Running……

Last Sunday I went for a run!  So what! I may hear you say.

Well I can’t do it very well that’s what!

It was my first run for about 5 years, and I use the word ‘run’ in the loosest form possible. I tend to use the word….lollop.  For that is indeed what I do, I lollop along like a big old lollopy lollop thing, flappy, flabby and short of breath… but I really enjoy doing it.  Ok enjoy may not be the word that comes to mind when I’m doing it but afterwards, the sense of achievement I get is really affirming.

I’d been promising myself this run since the New Year and on Sunday last I woke up and really felt it.  ‘Yep today is the day that I’m going to try to run.’  Maybe it was because I had the house to myself and no witnesses to my ‘gearing up’ for the run, maybe it was because the sun was shining and all looked quiet outside – again not many witnesses to see me lollop by.

I am not a natural runner, I don’t really know if I can run as I was stopped from doing PE at the age of 9years old and the last running I did was a 100m sprint in which, I believe I came 3rd. But after an unfortunate incident with a PE teacher at middle school I was stopped from doing any kind of PE or sport (apart from swimming) at school.  So running doesn’t come naturally or easily to me, but yet it is something I have always admired in others, something I loved doing as a child, running about, feeling the world rush by.  When I say this was my first run in 5 years, my running before that was er.. ..herm… no more than a 2 and half minutes lollop on the Downs in about a mile long circuit that was mostly walked with about three 2minute bursts of lolloping inbetween.

I feel so incredibly vulnerable when running.  I hate the idea that people are watching me struggle, watching me be utterly rubbish as they sail past in a steady jog not breaking a sweat.   I am not fast or strong in my lolloping, my breathing is heavy and laboured and goes against my dancer instinct of being light and airy and making everything look easy (it’s taken me till recently to realise that a lot of the time when I dance I actually hold my breath through certain sequences until I reach a stage where I can pause for breath – this is NOT good either!).  My senses are very much dulled as I am solely concentrating on putting one foot in front of the other and getting enough air into my lungs.  This sounds crazy, but I feel that if someone was to jump out at me/attack me/point and laugh at me I would not have the strength nor the breath to fight back, run away, or realise what was happening (which I realise is a complete contradiction of feeling that people are watching me, but hey that’s how I feel).

So not a runner then.

So Sunday.  I did my stretches and stepped out into the morning, I ran up the path to the top of my road, realising halfway through that it was a slight inclination…. I reached the end and had to stop. I thought I was going to die, I was struggling for breath and my body felt like it had been put through a spin cycle on the washing machine… I had lolloped about 10meters…. I think.  I started to walk waiting till my breath had evened out and I felt my legs weren’t going to give way.  I probably walked over half of my circuit (that definitely wasn’t a mile now that I have moved and am no longer near the downs) interspersing it with jogs that got shorter and shorter in duration.

I ended my lollop with the run down the road I had run up and entering my house convinced I’d given my self a coronary!  My face was bright red, my legs all but giving away, gulping lungfulls of air, I was sure I was going to puke and all I could do was just lay on the floor not moving until my pulse had stopped jumping about, my breathing had steadied and I could stand up with out leaning on something.  So I stretched my body out and sat down.  Thinking I would quite like a nap now.

About 15 minutes later I felt AMAZING!!!! Like all my senses just honed in, into something sharp and clear, yep I want to keep running! (I actually felt the same sensation later that evening after I’d burnt myself on the oven cooking for friends – which is an interesting observation for someone who is interested in other states of mind).

So, I’m not great, but it was after a fashion an enjoyable experience and its FREE!!!! No gym membership, no fancy equipment to learn how to use, no strings attached.

I plan to run this weekend coming, but only if its not raining….

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Medication (….is what you need……)

I take medication, twice a day, for the rest of my life, probably.  I don’t like taking it, it’s like a big fat reminder every morning and evening that I’m a bit of a miggy and my health isn’t so good anymore.  But it’s a needs must and I have to lump it.  I hate the idea of putting synthetic crap into my body, hate it. I’m sure it isn’t good in the long run for my body, heart or kidneys, but at the moment benefits outweigh the side effects so I take them.

I think I’ve mentioned in a previous blog that I take diuretics – water tablets.  I take two different kinds in the morning and a lower dose of one of the morning ones in the evening.  The main effect of water tablets is they rid your body of excess water.  When the heart isn’t functioning as well as it could be, it finds it harder and harder to push the blood around the body, organs begin to get starved of vital oxygen and become incompetent at their job, excess fluid in the body then builds up and the results are swollen feet and ankles, bloated stomachs and faces .  Anyway, so the water tablets get rid of this excess water, and so the meds I take make me pee!  Yep, pissing like a race horse has become a hobby!   Within the first hour of taking them I have to be near a loo, if I go on a long journey they don’t get taken until I reach the destination – experience has it known that being stuck in a traffic jam on the M4 when you are desperate for the loo is not particularly pleasant and very painful! 

I can’t determine how each day will pan out, sometimes I’m nipping to the loo and back every 20 minutes, sometimes whole afternoons can go by and I’ve not needed to go.  I guess it could be about how much sodium I’ve had in my diet that day, maybe…

So that’s a new thing I’ve had to learn, taking tablets and being responsible for not running out.  Something I’m not too good at.  I’m learning that an early warning sign that I am stressed is that I forget to take them and then I usually remember at a very inappropriate time where toilet access isn’t great and I’m in the middle of something important and resent being interrupted by my bladder every 20 minutes.  I have resorted to setting reminders on my phone to take them. 

It has also brought up the issue of control for me.  You see, though I administer them to myself every day, the Doctor has over all control of actually prescribing them to me.  I found this out this week.

I use a system where I am given a date by the pharmacy and go in and pick the meds up they’re all ready for me and so I don’t have to think about repeat prescriptions or getting the prescription into the chemist it’s all done for me.  So far so good.  Except this week I went to pick them up to be told that one of the prescribed medicines that I take were being ‘withheld’ because ‘apparently you should have enough of them already’ and that this was to stop me ‘stockpiling’ drugs….. Hang on… I joined this surgery a few months ago, the plan was agreed and I had equal amounts of all drugs that I needed prescribed from day one of joining this particular surgery…. how on earth does a Doctor, who I probably haven’t even met get to the conclusion that I’m stockpiling drugs to melt them into crack, to turn into some Breaking Bad character and sell them on to little children or something!!!! 

I had one tablet of that particular brand left… believe me if the Doctor thinks I can go without them that’s great, I’d happily come off them, but without any consultation….?? I did try to come off them myself, a while ago when I ran out and couldn’t get to a chemist, and being the stubborn mare I can be, I thought a few days off them would be ok… oh no, my legs swelled up and I felt bloated and slow, not good. Lesson learned.

The Pharmacist, was very sorry but could not give me prescribed meds without a prescription and suggested that I go back to the Dr to ask why he decided to stop administering the medication that I need.

I couldn’t get a next day appointment, and I had only one tablet left, so I had to just go to the surgery at a specific time and wait, and wait, and wait, and wait, almost positive that I was going to get ill, being surrounded by people, coughing and colding into their hands, scarves, and tissues!  

Over an hour I had to wait amongst the really sick people who probably really needed to see a doctor……  When I finally met the Doctor I was told, that no the medication should not have been stopped that according their records there was no way I was stockpiling my meds…..

An hour of my day.  A good few minutes of a doctor’s time that could have been used elsewhere, where it was needed, it makes me mildly annoyed, but do you know the most resentful thing about this whole medication thing….

The cost.  I have to pay for each item at full cost on that prescription.  That’s three items in all at £7.85 each that’s £23.55 every other month (they won’t give me more than two months supply of everything, you know, just in case I melt them down for crack…yada yada yada….)

It was only a couple of months ago that I found out that I could get the bill reduced as two of the meds on the list were just different strengths of the same medication, so I only needed to pay for two things.  I’d been paying for all three for years before some kind soul told me that one.  I know I am not alone here, transplant patients, asthma sufferers, colitis sufferers, those with Crohn’s Disease, the list is endless we all pay out for the medication that for some, keeps us alive

I know I’m having a good old moan here, and really £20 every other month isn’t that bad, but I (cue violins) was born with this condition that is going to get worse as I get older, the level of meds will probably go up, there is a bit of ‘well I didn’t ask for this, so why do I have to pay’ going on, but when I have my rational head screwed back on in a few days I’ll look at this post and be the first to tell me to QUIT MOANING!!