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Operation Abba - The Reunion (Just #believe)
"Are you limited by your Challenges" or "are you challenging your limits"

I Live with a Neuromuscular / Spinal Condition and plan to 'Challenging My Limits' by undertaken a Swim, Bike and Run (well jog, well shuffle) at Ironman Kalmar in 2016.

In doing so trying to raise a few pounds for the Brain & Spine Foundation.

Tell Me I Can't

DragonRunnerby DragonRunnerMar 24th 2014
So the journey, (if that what you wish to call it) of negative comments by Health Professionals continues. The latest which was supposed to help me resolve some gait issues has actually done the reverse. It does not help getting told that "the only sport I should be doing is one involves me sitting down". My comment of "so riding my bike is OK then" did not go down well. Also apparently swimming is out of the question due to the amount overpronation I have it would not be safe to walk on a wet surface and the regular pushing of the wall will put both my ankle and knee under increased pressure.

As normal orthotics would not suit or even a AFO (J brace) I will need to have made to measure boots, in a form of reassurance I was I could have one of my boots made to look like trainers, but that is a few months off yet for us to get to this stage. It is not often I let anything get to me, however I left the appointment feeling the most depressed ever. Initially I started to write a list of my training / racing kit that I could sell off. There was all sort of thing going through my mind of what direction my live would be taking.

At this point I have a question for any Healthcare Professionals, does someone who try's to look after themselves, push their body to the limits - actually make your job easier or harder than someone who is a couch potato, does not help themselves. Perhaps I am a bit biased on this but I know which one I would prefer. Sure it must be time for all Healthcare Professionals to give exercise advice that keeps people active. You do not have to be into sport to see the benefits surely?

In contrast the support given to me by the Celtic Tri family and friends was / is the completed opposite, and quite overwhelming - a simply thank you to all. So where has this left me, again simply - with quite a few finish lines to cross. I am not planning to drop out of any more events. In fact I have how added a ParaTriathlon to my season, which will be my first. It would be good to have an official classification but as the Llanelli event has a Open category I will start there until classification (a few months ago I was not even excepting the fact that this applied to me). It will be interesting to see how my condition will actually be classed as - is it a "Neuromuscular Condition" or "Spinal Cord Injury", I think the main point is the lower leg impairment I have will be what is considered the most and not the name of what I live with. Anyway both fit the diagnosis received to date.

This whole situation over the last few weeks however has left a bigger mark on me than I had realised. Not only have I been avoiding running, I have actually become scared of going for a run. Just for me even to admit to this is a massive step. Over the last few days / weeks there have been a lot of sole searching to establish the reasons that I feel this way. So this is what I have come with, the biggest is the recent fall, even with no obvious injury I will now admit it has affected my confidence. Another is the getting used to the decrease leg strength and the again the fear of a combination of them, were with a fall due to legs giving way and not having the ability to get back to my car. As the majority of my training is completed on my own, the lack of suitable training partners does not help here.

That's enough of a rant about my health as I have other items to write about. The next again is a little bit of a rant. I realise that there are major political issues going on that are connect the the host country of the Winter Paralympics. However this is no reason for the major UK media on the whole to ignore the successes of the GB Team in Sochi, with some not even a mentioning in their respective news programs the success. Also why is there no sign of the Golden Post Boxes which honoured the successful Summer Olympians / Paralympians.

So for me this is not about starting from the beginning but starting with a different view point. There is what I am going to have to accept that for many visually (and I will wait for the comments here) there does not appear to be anything wrong with me, I feel it is easier for many when they can see something is wrong. I am now so use to the pain and feeling a cramp not only in my legs but arm as well, this is a daily fact I have to get on with.

Last weekend could not have been a better time to get myself back on track with what I wish to do, and ignore what be the wrong word - but prove people wrong not all people who have medical condition do so by suffering the condition, some, probably more than is realise "live with" their condition. So the biannual "Sport Relief" is taking part around the UK. So a double goal for me, to start with the 5k Swimathon which I completed in still a good time so a happy start. Next up is the "mile" and if anyone including myself had said that for me to complete a mile would be a challenge, specially after what was achieved in Kalmar would be misinform, well with the way I have been over the last few week a mile is a challenge, which again was completed. Watch some of the Sport Relief footage on TV there were many inspirational stories which have been log in my memory bank to call upon over the next few week whilst getting myself ready for the season ahead.

Sitting writing this blog, have a coffee and looking out the window of one of the many coffee shops I spend time in, the weather is once again not inviting but I have to get on with this. Its going to be a long severn weeks and I am sure there will be hurdles to overcome, I would not have it any other way, in fact without my life would be boring. So say hello, if you see me on the floor make sure I have stopped my watch so it does not turn into a calendar.

As always thank you for your support.

Next stop for me is the Llanelli Paratriathlon / Llanelli Sprint Triathlon
by guest: Donna @donna_de, Mar 31st 2014 11:12
Hi Michael: I definitely think that sometimes doctors tell us not to do things to cover their own backsides and avoid potential liability! After being told last year to "stop immediately" I found I needed to build my own way back, in a way that I thought was not hurting me. Unfortunately no one can tell you what will or won't hurt. The trial and error of it all is REALLY REALLY tiring. But I feel so much better for an active life. Keep at it, and like you said, you have tons of supporters.
 
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