Monday, 24 November 2008

Twenty-Eight Days Later....

My husband has arisen between 5.30 and 6.30 am for 28 consecutive days to go running for an hour. I've taken a gentler approach for the last few days, preferring a shorter (and less early) 30-45 minute jog on our little treadmill. In the comfort of the spare room, window wide open, music blasting out to all who happens to walk past, I'm as happy as Larry. Who IS Larry, does anybody know?

Test results from ECG and blood tests: I'm happy to report being normal.. I know, I know, it's a matter of opinion. Well the old ticker is normal, so are cholesterol, glucose levels, liver, kidneys, um.. maybe something else I've forgotten but anyway, whatever it is, it's normal- yeehaa! Blood pressure was even normal on Friday but it's a bit high again today. The nurse advised me to buy a BP machine to keep a frequent check on it.

Right, enough of me and my hypertension and on to the more important business of carers. What do carers do? Well, this silent army of people give much to society and are valued at around £87 billion a year. Without them the NHS would collapse! Many carers face financial hardships and isolation as a result of giving their lives to care for ill, frail or disabled loved ones. Carers UK is an organisation working to improve the lives of carers. They provide a voice for the 6 million people who provide unpaid care and they campaign for changes that will make a difference to carers' lives.

In his 35 years of working for the NHS, Trevor had some involvement with Carers UK. In fact, we were invited by the Chief Executive, Imelda Redmond, to attend a ceremony at the House of Commons, to celebrate the launch of the 'Carers Equal Opportunites' Act in October 2005. Back then we pledged our help to Imelda and are grateful for the opportunity to run for Carers UK in the London Marathon.

Hywel Francis, MP, and Imelda Redmond, Chief Executive of Carers UK
October 2005

I met Guy Fawkes at Parliament. Unfortunately I got too close and set off the security alarms!

This was taken in the Strangers Bar at the House of Commons
October 2005

Trevor leaving Parliament

Saturday, 15 November 2008

Specs Reunited

Trevor and I were up at 6.30 this morning to go for a 3-mile run and those petunias sprang to mind again - see post below. We ran uphill to the local "One Stop" store and I did wonder why we were putting ourselves through this discomfort when we could have been snuggled up in our warm bed. However, as we raced home, downhill, with the smell of grass surging through our nostrils, I remembered why.... because it was exhilarating! Even the local horses nodded their heads in agreement.

We have just completed the first week's training from the marathon plan - so far, so good.

During an eye-test a couple of weeks ago, the optician advised me to get my blood pressure checked because my eyeballs indicated that it may be too high. After a visit to the local GP surgery and confirmation that it IS too high, I borrowed a BP machine and have checked it twice a day for the past week and a half, and it's repeatedly above normal. Yesterday I went for blood tests and on Tuesday I'm booked in for an ECG (electrocardiogram) test to measure the electrical activity of the heart.

Golly, I only went for the eye-test because I'd lost my glasses.... I wasn't expecting all this!

On a happy note, the diet is going well. I have lost 12 lbs (in 10 weeks) and Trevor has lost the same amount, in just 2 weeks!

I was reunited with my lost glasses last week. I don't really need them because I've bought 2 new pairs but it was a joyous occasion to see my familiar frames again - I've missed them.

Monday, 3 November 2008

The Start

Fans of The Hitch-hikers Guide to the Galaxy will be familiar with the immortal words, "Oh no, not again". They were the words that went through the mind of a bowl of petunias as it fell to the ground. I could empathise with those petunias because "oh no, not again" were exactly my thoughts when the alarm went off at 6.30am yesterday, SUNDAY, for the 5th consecutive morning, to go running.

Week One of our 24-week marathon training officially starts next Monday, 10th November, but Trevor thinks it would be really good to do some pre-training running. Yes O Wise One, it's a great idea but at 6.30 on a Sunday? What would Jesus do? Mmm, he'd probably just get on with it with quiet determination.

I have a feeling "oh no, not again" will come to my mind often in the next 6 months though :-)