Friday, 18 May 2012

My first encounter with the 'beautiful people'

I've only just come round after feeling on the worst side of rotten for practically a month.  Thanks for your kind words and concern, I really appreciated it!

I decided to start over my C25k training because I thought I may as well start somewhere, even if I was worried I wasn't physically ready.  I had originally started it when we were on a mini-break (haha, I think that's the first time I've used this phrase!) on the Normandy coast in April.  I managed only 2 runs before I got ill.  I was so annoyed and disappointed but I'm pleased my motivation managed to stick through the Michelin virus (so called as I was puffy!)

I am incredibly lucky to live very near a river/canal system and have often watched the joggers and bikes going past as I cross various bridges over the river.  Monday was to be the day that I joined them.

It takes about 7 minutes to walk to the canal from my house, just enough time to do the brisk walk warm up that the programme suggests.  The programme tells you when to walk and run and encourages you to keep going (ie, only 30 seconds left of jogging....)

I reached the steps down to the river path and was asked to start jogging in my earphones.  I nearly bumped into two ladies who were running up the stairs and I was going down them!  opps.  I turned right and started to jog.  I had not considered that I was now 'on show' and that there were so many joggers to cross!

It dawned on me that I had no idea of running etiquette!  Do you say hello to everyone that you meet coming the other way, or ignore them and pretend to fiddle with your ipod or scratch your nose?  I decided to smile and nod or say a bonjour - I had my ipod on anyway so I thought a smile would do the job.

The last time I jogged, I got enormous stitches and had to stop.  I've really researched stitches and tried to follow advice (don't drink or eat before you go out, breathe deeply, breathe as your left leg hits the floor) but nothing seemed to help it, except stopping.  This time, I took the only other advice I hadn't tried, which was to go REALLY slowly.  I can't say it helped greatly, but the stitch was more bearable and I only had to stop twice.  I am still really annoyed with myself because the last time I training for a 5k race, I don't remember getting stitches at all.  I mean, I'm not even breathing heavily or tired out and I get a fat stitch after 30 seconds jogging and have to stop.  I've been told that I gets better with time so I'm not giving up, but it is really really really annoying, especially as I'm so motivated to get fit!

So, low and behold, my stitch comes back and now with an audience of the 'beautiful people' as I like to call them.  aggghhhh.  I try to keep going and not grimace too much.  I stop when I have to (but after someone has just passed me!)  I realise I'm being ridiculous.  Yes, I am very intimidated by the joggers that almost sprint past me.  Yes, they are thin and I can see their shoulder muscles, and boy, they are even nicely tanned, but I can do better than this.

There are also a couple of joggers that look like me. Hey, even the beautiful people must have looked like me at one point, before they got fit and confident.  I think about all the people that have got fit and blog about it, who have inspired me, and feel instantly better.  Yes, I'm actually quite proud of myself. No, very proud.  I'm brushing shoulders with other people that are on their own personal journey.  Wherever it may take them, however long ago they started, they're on it, and I'm starting out on my own path.  The path is only 8 minutes of 1 minute runs with walking breaks in between, but with perseverance and good health (enough already stitches!) and a pinch of luck, the distance I can run will increase quickly.

I turn around half way through and admire the view, which is, in my opinion, stunning.  I'll try to take my camera out on a run in the near future and put some photos put here.  I feel blessed to live here, it really is special and I haven't started exploring the river paths properly yet.  I know they go on for miles and miles.  haha, ok, I think I'll do it on bike, not jogging! 

Once I get back onto the road, I feel less 'on show'.  Cars go by in a flash and don't notice that I only run for 30 seconds before I have to stop for my dam stitch.

I get back home, stretch out my sore hips and feel very content and full of energy!  My ipod nike + gizmo tells me I've covered 4,2km in 35 min 32s.  Walking and running, but covered all the same.


Sunday, 6 May 2012

La La La.... I'm not listening

These last few days have been a never ending ill-fest and although I felt much better on Friday, I seem to have gone back down hill since then (co-indices with the end of one of the treatments).

This weekend was designated the weekend where we would install the interior doors that we got in the UK last weekend and our house now looks like a war zone. 

Due to the weather, J's had to have the 'workshop' in the house.  I have just been called for a second opinion and our 3rd bedroom looks like a hamster cage, and a disgusting one at that.  I did my duty, turned around and left the scene with a very heavy heart.  Living in a house renovation is really getting to me, not helped by the fact I feel rather terrible health-wise, it seems ten times worse today.

I can't imagine a time where your socks, or anything come to think of it, do not go white within 3 seconds of touching a surface.  I use the three second rule - if something has touched a surface for longer than 3 seconds, it will be unwearable.  I have totally given up on cleaning at the moment meaning the eventual job will be awful when I finally feel up to doing it. 

This weekend I've had to climb over the back of the sofa to access it as the sofa has been pushed into the corner for door workshop space No 2.   I'm doing my best to ignore the mess, the sound of tools and am desperately trying not to think about how stressful this all is.  I just want to be well and not be living in a renovation project, just for one day, please......

I have totally lost my appetite since being ill so I've not been doing much cooking and I feel bad for J who has been working for 2 days solidly on installing 3 doors. I just don't have the energy.  He's been good about it but I'm sure he's looking forward to eating in a resto tomorrow lunch time at work!

Today is one of those days I wish I had a fairy godmother, or someone nearby who could come and give me a hand.  Everything is just too much.  I miss my Mum today.

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

MIA: Ramblings from my UK and French sick bed

Apparently it was my birthday on Sunday.  I didn't really notice from my bed.

I started feeling ill on Wednesday (after a week of muscle tenderness that I put down to doing too much exercise too soon, but who knows now!) and took Thursday off work to try and sleep off the fever, shivers and aching bones.  I felt okish on Friday, and with the long weekend in the UK looming, I decided to go to work and plough through the day up to my eyeballs on paracetamol taking the edge off it.

We had planned to go to the UK last weekend for 3 reasons:  One, it was my bday and it's always nice to see my parents for that.  Two, it was a long weekend in France due to the bank holiday on May 1st, Three: We'd been researching interior doors and decided to buy a couple in the UK, and the doors were delivered last week to my parents house, so we decided to hire a van to collect them.  I will talk about Doorgate in a future post.

Anyway, the UK is going through the wettest drought in history.  In some places there are hosepipe bans whilst at the same time, we are experiencing the most rainfall in April/May ever.  There are flood barriers in place and rivers are ready to burst their banks.  The problem is that the reservoirs are dry from a very dry two previous winters meaning the constant heavy rain at the moment isn't doing much.

It rained the whole weekend, and I mean, poured down.  It took me back to being a child in my bed, with the duvet pulled up around me, listening to the rain on the roof and windows.....

By Sunday, my actually birthday, I was feeling terrible and I must say, really really sorry for myself.  I had a fever, my neck was swollen, I had a swollen face too and numb lips! With all the other usual symptoms, blocked nose, sore throat etc, I also had the feeling I was hosting an Olympic swimming event in my head.  I was on maximum paracetamol and ibuprofen daily amounts and was planning on sitting it out.

I also felt rather unloved if I'm honest concerning my birthday.  I love Facebook, but it has made people REALLY lazy, and I'm guilty of this too I suppose.  No one knew I was in the UK, but yet, I had only 2 text messages and no one called me to say hello! J also didn't help, only a peck on the cheek as my bday wish!  I guess the sight of me didn't inspire much! I didn't have the energy to get on the computer so only read the FB messages today.  'I hope you had a good day etc etc....haha!  errr, no, in fact I didn't!  I tried my best when I was at home.  After all, I was blessed to be with my parents (who always know how to look after you the best when you're sick!) and J.  The main people in my life, the only people in my life really.  Moving to another country sorts out your friends real and proper!  and it's saddening to realise they've all forgotten you when it comes to events like birthdays.

Mum sent me to our local Dr the morning we were leaving to go back to France and after an eternal wait, I was prodded and given this :

Needless to say, the 7 hour journey back to France was not the most pleasant.  I shed tears as our van drove out of my parents street.  I just didn't want/need the journey and I certainly did not want to go back to work the day after.  J told me that it was the quietest journey ever.  I hardly spoke, we just held hands as J drove us back.  We got back at 10pm and I promptly went to bed

This morning, I mustered the energy to get up, dressed and out to work. One look at me and my boss sent me home.  Let's face it, I'm not a pretty sight or much use right now.

I decided to go to the Drs and ask for the holy grail of the sick note.  My Dr is on holiday, and I almost cried when I read this on the door.  Plan B, find another Dr in town.  I managed after much walking about (why is it always like energy, need medication, feel terrible, must walk in the rain a loooong way.  oh yea, it's raining in France too) and when he saw the medication I was given in the UK, he said, and I quote ' you're joking ' followed by ' there lust have been a mistake at the pharmacy' followed by 'I knew things were bad in the UK, but this?' followed by a five minute Q&A session about the UK health system.  It appears that the antibiotics I was given in the UK are suitable for a child of 12kg and not what I should have got at all, in fact, according to the French Dr, it would be more likely to make me immune to antibiotics and not cure my infections at all.

So, after being prodded and examined, I got this:

Spot the difference, much?!  I am not at all condemning the UK health system, which I think is marvellous on the whole, but I would just like to point out the differences!  The French Dr changed my antibiotic treatment immediately and gave me things to take for my symptoms.  You all know that they like giving out boxes of stuff in France and I know there is a lot of wastage in the health system, sometimes I agree that it is unnecessary, but I can't help wondering why there was a big difference in the treatment.  Is is cultural (although I think French people on the whole are more concerned about 'overdosing' on medication than in the UK, where people will happily take paracetamol etc etc for nothing at all), or maybe because in Wales prescriptions are free, they don't give you much?  In France I'll get reimbursed 70% by the government and 30% by my private health cover or mutuelle.  I don't really think it is much more expensive, we just pay for the services differently.  I honestly don't want to say that France is better, but it's flagrant there is a huge difference in treatment and I do wonder why the UK doctor gave me something for children?!

After all that action that I wasn't expecting, I was also written a sick note that signed me off until Monday, hopefully I can start feeling normal again.  I am still puffy and numb (hey my wrinkles aren't showing as much right?!) and the swimming pool in still in my head along with the other symptoms that we all love to hate when you've got a virus or something or other.  I'm also still incredibly sleepy and I NEVER nap in the day normally.

It's taken all day to write this post, so I'll just say 'à bientôt'.  On the plus side, if I don't fall asleep during the episodes, I can catch up on season 8 of Greys Anatomy!  I wish Dr Avery was my Dr! 

I hope you're feeling better than I am, I will soon be back with you!  Happy Birthday to all us Taureans, please have a drink for me if you're celebrating! 

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