Chris Worfolk's Blog


New Year’s Eve 2021

January 5th, 2022 | Life

Great to be partying again with these lovely people.

2021 in review

January 1st, 2022 | Life

We started the year in the depths of the pandemic and saw out the new year and welcomed in January with a Zoom-based NYE party. I accidentally set a marathon PB of 3:55:33 when I realised three hours in that I was ahead of my previous PB pace. The vaccination programme build some momentum as my gran received her first jab. I completed my IRONMAN Coach certification and restorative yoga certification. The Humanist Chaplaincy Network launched its new Level 1 qualification.

I tried trail running in February and finally finished my 3,670 km cycle along Route 66. I launched my person-centred counselling course. Tom Brady won his 7th Super Bowl, giving him more titles than any other team, let alone any other player.

It was a work-heavy month in March as I launched two new courses. The first being Metacognitive Therapy and the second being Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy. I also published my Running For Beginners book.

We got back to racing in April with the Yorkshire Duathlon (41:41 10k you say?!?) and the Wuthering Heights Wander trail race. I also completed some virtual challenges: running the Cabot Trail and cycling Iceland’s Ring Road. I also launched my Cognitive Behavioural Therapy course which is now one of my biggest sellers.

The start of May was a blur as I finished the 7in7 challenge (7 triathlons in 7 days). May also saw my first TT race and the first triathlon of the year in Tadcaster (fastest HPH run split you say?). I completed the English Channel virtual swim and Bogdan and I took on the Daffodils sportive. I finished the month by completing my third iron-distance race at the Evolve Truo. We partied for Eurovision and I launched my couples counselling course.

June was filled with sport, too. Jay and I took on the Evolve Sprint and we gathered as a club for World Triathlon Leeds which took place entirely in Roundhay Park. My mum, dad and sister also raced! I finished my level 3 in counselling and launched my life coaching course.

Venla “graduated” from daycare in July. I ran my first mile race at the Summer Mile, took on the White Rose Classic, completed my first adventure race and learnt to stand-up paddleboard. parkrun returned! I took 1:45 off my full distance triathlon time at Outlaw and launched my acceptance and commitment course. England reached the final of Euro 2020.

The long-awaited Tokyo Olympics took place in August and Team GB took the first ever mixed-team relay triathlon gold. Harriers also took five teams to the Evolve mixed team relay. But far more importantly, Katie & Simon’s long-awaited wedding took place, too! Toby organised the club’s first backyard ultra, I did the Evolve quarter and my third full distance triathlon in the year at Dalesman. I wasn’t the only one sporting: Venla completed her first junior parkrun. Chevin parkrun launched. The annual Finnish picnic returned and I launched my DBT course.

We took a family trip to Stonehenge in September so that I could take in another adventure race. Venla started school. I completed a few more virtual challenges including running the Camino de Santiago and swimming Mount Fuji. There was some canoeing at Leeds Dock and we broke the world record for most people doing a 5k in 24 hours. We raced at Ilkey Triathlon and Outlaw X where I went sub-6 at middle distance. I completed my longest ever swim (9k) at The Amphibian and launched my cognitive psychology course.

After an eighteen month wait I completed my 250th parkrun in October and finished cycling the Appalachian Trail virtual challenge. It was a family affair at Goole Triathlon and I completed my Leadership in Running Fitness with British Athletics. We celebrated Venla’s birthday at Yorkshire Wildlife Park and Dobbo’s stag do at Magic Rock. I teamed up with my friends Peter and Tracey to launch our interview skills course.

My dad was hot on my heels in November, completing his 250th parkrun. Luckily my new sub-20 PB should help me stay ahead. I also set a PB at the Hubble Bubble half marathon where I came third. We went climbing, F1 legend Frank Williams passed away and we launched our conducting interviews course. I completed my level 1 with Swim England.

Finally, in December, I saw The Offspring live at The Wardrobe. I came second at the Christmas Cracker 16k. That was it for running as I then fractured my ankle. I launched my Solution-Focused Brief Therapy.We wrapped up 2021 by celebrating with family and friends.

Apple Time Machine

December 29th, 2021 | Tech

Apple Time Machine is the built-in backup system for macOS. The problem is that it’s not very good. Having used it for ten years, it consistently fails to verify its own backups. So, the idea that you have this rich history of incremental backups is often not true as it fails and has to start again.

It also takes up a ridiculous amount of disk space. Given that Apple only ship their Macs with 512 GB of SSD, taking up most of that to run a backup is not ideal.

Maybe it could use a different disk. But then it goes confused about how much storage is available. It thinks there is less than 100 GB available:

But I actually had 4 TB available:

I hope Apple sort all of this out at some stage.

All of the PBs

December 22nd, 2021 | Sport

Despite the tragic end to my running this month, 2021 has been kind to me. I’ve smashed all of my PBs and I don’t think I could really ask for anything more.

Running

1 mile: 5:38 at the Summer Mile. I’ve never done a one-mile race before so it was a guaranteed PB.

5k: 19:38 at Woodhouse Moor parkrun. With parkrun closed for so long it was bound to happen when it restarted, and it did in August before achieving the dream of a sub-2 in November.

10k: 41:41 at the Yorkshire Duathlon. Not sure how accurate they measure in multisport but I’m taking it.

10 mile: 1:10:31 at the Christmas Cracker. It was a trail run (on the towpath) so again, might not be 100% accurate. And I haven’t run a 10-mile in four years so this was inevitable. But coming second was awesome.

Half marathon: 1:35:36 at Hubble Bubble. Another Grim Up North towpath run. I came third at this one.

Marathon: 3:55:33 at a self-supported replacement for the Sir Titus Trot. This was an accidental PB as I was chilling out and taking selfies early on (with the timer running) and only realised at 30k I was on a PB pace.

Triathlon

Sprint: 1:04:20 at Tadcaster Triathlon. What is a PB given the courses are so different? For example, Tadcaster uses a 14k bike course. But I did take the fastest run split for the club, so I was very happy with that. I also PBed on the Evolve sprint course.

Standard: 2:42:52 at World Triathlon Leeds. That swim is coming along nicely. I also PBed at the Evolve quarter course.

Middle: 5:46:47 at Outlaw X. Very pleased to get a sub-6. In fact, it had been so long since I Had run a half marathon (this was pre-Hubble Bubble) that I set a half marathon PB at the race as well.

Full: 12:50:05 at Outlaw. It’s difficult to compare full distance courses but the closest is probably my first, the Yorkshireman, which I beat by 1:45:07.

Happy holidays

December 21st, 2021 | Family & Parenting, Life

Whatever version of the solstice you are celebrating, we’re sending our love and wishing you a wonderful time. I hope you’ve found plenty of good stuff in 2021 and have an even better 2022.

We don’t take a holiday photo every year, but we did take one in 2016, just after Venla had arrived. Safe to say she looks a little different!

Ankle fracture

December 20th, 2021 | Health & Wellbeing, Life

Last week I was leading a club run when due to some combination of poor foot placement, a bit of gravel coming down from a curb and maybe just some plain old bad luck, I decked it. I went over on the ankle and it hurt a lot. Thankfully, Lucy was running in my group and was able to lead everyone back to The Edge.

I booked an appointment with my GP to get it checked out but when I asked for a telephone appointment, explaining I couldn’t walk, they said they were only doing face-to-face appointments (they’re going to freak out when they hear about COVID) and so I had to go to the walk-in. The irony was lost on them.

Next, I tried the minor injury unit at Middleton. However, they don’t allow you to drop in, you have to phone 111. Which I did. 111 booked me an appointment at the LGI A&E. I found this hilarious as pre-bookable emergencies was a Monster Raving Loony Party policy proposed in 2015. Although the LGI had some trouble finding the referral details, everything here was really good: almost no wait going through assessment, x-ray and minor injuries. They checked it out and referred me to the fracture clinic who phoned back the next day.

End result: it is fractured. It’s called an avulsion fracture which is where the ligament rips off a tiny piece of bone. I have to wear a walker boot for 4 weeks, and no running until 8 weeks post-injury at least. Not what I wanted given I had just start my training for Race to the Castle. But it’s happened so I just have to get on with life.

Solution-Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT) course

December 18th, 2021 | News

Traditional forms of psychotherapy involve talking a lot about problems and take a long time. This is expensive for the client and isn’t much fun because you have to talk about your weakest points. Of course, it may be worth it if you make gains. But there is an alternative.

Solution-Focused Brief Therapy says that by focusing on a client’s existing strengths and using those to build solutions, change can be achieved in only a handful of sessions. In my new course, we’ll explore all about SFBT: what it is, how it works and how to use it.

Preview the course on Udemy or watch the trailer below.

SEQ Level 1 Swimming Assistant

December 13th, 2021 | Life

I’ve been expanding my triathlon coaching knowledge by completing some of the individual discipline training programmes, including the Swim England Qualifications Level 1 teaching assistant.

Part of the practical was delivering swimming lessons as part of the Learn To Swim programme. Working with children is a very different experience from working with adults who, as triathletes or would-be triathletes, are typically strong swimmers. Definitely a fun challenge!

To Sell is Human

December 12th, 2021 | Books, Business & Marketing

To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others is a book by Dan Pink. In it, he argues that the old ABCs of sales (always be closing) have been replaced by a new, more authentic and honest approach to sales.

His case is essentially this: the old way of sales relied on information asymmetry. The salesperson knew more than the customer and could use that to their advantage. However, in the information age, the customer has often done a lot of research and in many cases knows more than the salesperson (such as competitor offerings) and therefore you cannot bullshit a customer anymore.

So, what do we do about it? Pink argues that we need to be empathetic towards our customers. Understand how we can help them and build a way to win together, rather than seeing sales as a zero-sum game where we have to get one over on the customer.

We should give them all in the information they need and not be afraid of doing so. He gives the example of CarMax, an American car superstore brand that provides computers for customers to research what their competitors are doing so they know that CarMax is offering the best deal.

Finally, be clear on what you are offering. Pink suggests an elevator pitch may be too long for the modern generation who are used to 140-character tweets. Pink suggests a number of successors to the elevator pitch including one-word pitches (when I say “search”…), questions and rhymes.

The Offspring at The Wardrobe

December 8th, 2021 | Music

The Offspring are touring to support their new album Let The Bad Times Roll. They did two stops in Leeds, one to play a big gig at Leeds Arena and another to do a more intimate acoustic site at The Wardrobe.

Ironically, despite it being an album launch, I don’t think they played any songs off their new album. It was all about the classics: The Kids Aren’t Alright, Self-Esteem, Why Don’t You Get A Job, Dirty Magic and a host of others. But perhaps the highlight was Noodles busting out Come Out And Play on the ukulele.

COVID compliance was good. The venue was checking COVID passports and face masks at the door, and most people kept their masks on if they weren’t actively drinking.