Sunday, 17 August 2014 22:05

Here comes the Summer

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Here comes the Summer

So, where were we? Ah Yes, I remember, which I am surprised about after the bang to my head. I now realise, some 10 weeks later, how lucky I actually am

. A week or two after the accident I was sent for several X-Rays on my back, neck and shoulders, there was a worry that I might have done something nasty and my physio didn’t want to start doing any deep work until I had been thoroughly checked out. My GP agreed and I was zapped full of radiation the next day. Fortunately, there was nothing untoward, apart from a spot of arthritis at the top of my neck!! I was somewhat alarmed about this but was quickly re- assured that this was perfectly normal for a man of my age. I must be getting old!!

So, having been at last cleared of any broken bits I proceeded at full speed to the physio who incidentally also informed me that arthritis is common in sporty people, don’t feel so bad now. Over the next few weeks I was zapped with ultra sound and lasers, prodded and probed, pulled and stretched, stuck full of pins and given a mountain of exercises to do with stretchy bands, weights and a massive pilates ball, all of which I have tried to do religiously, even though I look stupid balancing on top of a massive green ball.

They were clearly working though, and much to my delight I was cleared for gentle exercise on my bike rollers. These are an indoor rolling road basically that the bike sits on top. I had already had the bike checked over for any cracks as it has a carbon frame and, let’s face it, I don’t want to have any more mishaps!

Two weeks later, and several sessions on the rollers with my nice fresh legs I was deemed fixed enough for some gentle jogging, with the specific instructions not to overdo it and if I feel any pain to stop immediately. Yeeeeaah, things were beginning to move along nicely although I knew I still had a long way to go. My aim through all this re-hab was to get myself fit enough to take place in Ironman Mallorca which is due to take place at the end of September. I was a long way away from that yet but at least it gave me a goal to keep me going.

I started off with some nice gentle runs and although my shoulder hurt a bit I felt OK and increased the distance that I was running upto about 8 or so miles fairly quickly. It was around this time that I realised something else was going on. Trudi had been saying for a couple of weeks that I had been forgetting things that she had told me only the day before, obviously I couldn’t remember so mainly put it to one side. It was then that I realised that I was also getting sentences up in muddled words (see what I did there) and struggling to remember some words all together, I seemed to be in a dark place, maybe expecting too much of myself. I was also still having headaches every day, and no, it wasn’t due to beer!

Looking back now I realise that my brain was a bit scrambled up, well, more than normal anyway, and was quickly reassured that I would be OK. My GP reminded me of what a wonderful piece of kit the human body is, and I must say I have to agree. It is amazing what you can achieve if you push it hard enough. I digress, I was also reminded of the fact that I had had a massive impact at 40+ mph and could expect a 6 month haul to get back to normal. Wowzer, that put a dent in my Ironman plans. I think the very fact that I realised what was happening pointed to the fact that I was recovering in the head department and fortunately, as it happens I was.

I was starting to increase the mileage on both the bike and running, but was still not allowed to go swimming. I wasn’t really surprised about the latter; I still didn’t have a full range of movement in my shoulders and was getting frustrated at the lack of progress. My physio was great though and was genuinely surprised at how far I had come in 8 weeks, saying that most people with my injuries would still be doing nothing never mind wanting to do an Ironman in 10 weeks

. A few weeks later and I was cleared for “10 minutes of swimming, do not go hammering along for an hour” I think she said this as I had rocked up on Monday morning and sheepishly proclaimed that I had run a steady trail marathon the day before, whoops, after all, my legs are fine! So after a bit of paddling in the pool I was in Coniston a week later and went for 20 mins, it felt great to be back in the water although I did have a few aches the next day.

This week I managed 1.5 miles and was chuffed to bits. Ironman training continues afoot and I feel that I am really making progress now. I still hurt, my left shoulder is mainly muscle damage and aches in the night and first thing in the morning, my right is damaged around the AC joint and lets me know if I do too much, my neck gives me a bit of gip occasionally but is so much better and the really good news is that I haven’t had a headache for a couple of weeks and am back to my normal grumpy self.

Things are looking good, Ironman Mallorca is now 6 weeks away and I feel confident that I will be there to compete it, the times may not be brilliant but who cares, a few weeks ago it was still a dream.

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