• Paul

it's all gone pear shaped!

I've not updated the blog for a while so I have summarised the events!

Day 21 to Day 26

Instead of the normal workout routines to improve movement and mobility I thought now would be a good time to start increasing the weights and routines to push myself a little harder.

On the 21st day I completed my longest ever cardio routine using the bike and running machine. I was really pleased and worked up a good sweat.

I was really chuffed with my ability to swiftly walk for just over 21 minutes without lunging to the left as much as I have done in the past. I hope this means the work I have been doing to improve my foot placement and strengthen my left leg is paying off. I completed the workout with a good long (for me) session on the bike. YAY

I have also been focusing on lifting heavier weights. On the 23rd day I even introduced a trunk rotation with weights on the cable station. It was surprisingly enjoyable. I found myself getting into the workout and started to increase and decrease the weights alternately for each set and doing more sets. I felt well pleased.

On the 26th Day it was the turn of the upper body, specifically the shoulders!!! I set up the shoulder press equipment and as soon as I started exercising, I knew something was wrong. The left shoulder was not quite right, but I persevered through the set… I should have stopped immediately! I rested and started again but had to stop. Not to be beaten I reduced the weight to the very lowest and carried on. My thought was “at least if I’m moving it with the least resistance, I am still doing some good” … OUCHIE is all I can say. It was painful once I got home.

Saying that I still managed to do all my other exercises.

The shoulder pain wasn’t the worse I have had but I knew I should not have pushed myself. I had a Physiokey treatment and it sorted itself out. I was very thankful for the Physiokey.

DAY 27

From here on in it all goes pear shaped.

I found that the combination of pushing myself with heavier weights, the weather changes playing havoc with the Fibro and the fatigue kicking in was all too much. It felt like I was between a rock and a hard place.

I was feeling lousy but also must work as well as other commitments that have taken up huge amounts of time, so something had to give and sadly it was the workouts!

Knowing I would render myself useless and unable to work if I went for my workouts, I had to make a judgement call and reluctantly decided I needed to take some time out to recoup and feel better.

The time out has enabled me to reflect and question if the 30-day movement-fitness challenge has been of benefit. My short answer is YES it has. I will explain more about that in my next blog update.

Having returned to the gym yesterday after a 4 day break and now sat writing this I am gutted I haven’t achieved 30 days of consecutive workouts, it’s like I have moved my own goal post’s so in essence I feel like I have cheated and not achieved what I set out to do.

I’ve added the missed days onto the countdown clock so have 4 days (including yesterday and today) left to do to complete the full 30 days.

Getting back to the gym yesterday was great. I had a lovely welcome from the team and a chat with the manager. He was supportive and understanding that I had to take a break.

The thing with Fibro is it can erupt at any time.

The symptoms can just flare up or the fatigue can kick in. Normally I can deal with this but because I set myself a goal to do 30 days of movement-exercise it magnified my frustration.

I’d like to say the gym sessions have not aggravated the symptoms or made the flare ups more regular, but I can’t.

The difference is, since the start of this journey I can put each flare up down to increasing my movement through going to the gym, it has an explanation whereas in the past they have just been because that’s what the condition is like.

Suddenly being incapacitated for however long during a flare up leaves me feeling vulnerable and very low. Now I can justify each flare up and the increased number of them, I don’t seem to mind them as much. While I was frustrated with the latest flare up, I could understand why it happened. Will I continue working out and pushing myself? YES!

The benefits are outweighing the negative and I hope in time the flare ups will settle down and become less frequent as I gain strength, stamina and agility.

This is a bit of an “aside note” but still has relevance. I was feeling quite low yesterday and going to the gym helped, it picked me up a little.

I realised the reason I was feeling low was because it was the anniversary of being diagnosed with Fibro and ME.

I vividly remember being in the consulting room with the Rheumatologist and repeatedly asking her to repeat what she had told me. I think she thought I was questioning her but in all honestly, I just couldn’t take it in (even though my GP had been treating me for these conditions before the formal diagnosis). The consultant then said she would get the senior consultant in to speak with me. He did further tests and confirmed the diagnosis.

I’m not sure what happened next. I was given a leaflet and obviously left as my next memory is being on top of a massive hill overlooking the whole of Portsmouth. Looking at the massive expanse of space made me feel very small. I can’t tell you what was going through my head, but my other half and I spent some time on the top of the hill and then got some food. I have no idea if we spoke and if we did what it was about.

That feeling of being small hit me again yesterday. It was strange, very strange.

Big hugs

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