All those and more...
Here they come, puffing up the side of a Berkshire hill, Long Run, Binocular and 34 other hardy-looking sorts, much slower than the zippy little rats that have entertained us this summer but tough enough to do two or three miles in the mud every month between now and March.
Inexorably, the wheel of sporting fortune turns, and in the space of 10 months it has done so for England.
The dual-code Wales international Gareth Thomas has retired from all forms of rugby with immediate effect.
Kelly Sotherton is taking up the heptathlon again in an attempt to compete at the 2012 Olympics.
Roger Federer is like Neil Young's Hurricane.
Jason Robinson is one of a handful of rugby players looked upon with reverence and respect across both the Rugby League and Rugby Union communities.
With the Rugby League World Cup looming on the horizon, preparation for the England side gets underway in earnest on Friday when they take on the Exiles at the Halliwell Jones Stadium in Warrington.