Some Stuff About Me ......

I live in Harrogate, North Yorkshire with my wonderful wife and soul-mate Helen. I have two incredible sons - Evan and Matthew - who are occasionally show up at home, usually when they're hungry or need money. The three of them are the best thing that ever happened to me and I love them all. I spent over 24 years in the Royal Navy, but since I packed it all in and got a proper job my life has gone from strength to strength and I've never looked back. I am a die-hard soul music fan, but my heart truly belongs in the fells of Northern England, it's what I was made for. Please read about my adventures and experiences ....

Tuesday 2 November 2021

Away With The Fairies

Just recently I've been seeing a guy who specialises in traditional Chinese acupuncture and reiki, my initial rationale was the hope that his treatment could help my chronic tib posterior tendonitis, a condition I've had for well over 18 months and something I'm heartily sick of. I have to say I've found it a very therapeutic experience, even if my tendonitis isn't especially improved ! I've had positive, uplifting results from TCM (traditional Chinese medicine) in the past and while the sceptical side of me sometimes questions if it has any real scientific basis, the more pragmatic side of me accepts it for what it is and the calming, peace-inducing effect it has on me, who cares if it's psychosomatic or otherwise? I leave this guy's sessions feeling infinitely better than when I go in and I think that's all that matters. Also, it's good to offload your troubles on such a wise counsel and I guess the carthartic effect is as important as anything else. Out of the four times I've seen him, he's managed to KO me 4 out of 4, reiki is a strange, strange thing. I slept like the dead last night, that's not a usual situation hereabouts

Helen was on a bit of a tight schedule today, so I dragged her out for a run up in Nidderdale (she's absolutely crap in the mornings, a proper nightmare) and it was worth the effort, it was a bright and beautiful day with the Dale looking resplendent in its Autumnal colours. We ran from Dacre out to Glasshouses and then up through Guisecliffe woods to the trig point at High Crag, before dropping back down, past the gin distillery (really) and Dacre. In the afternoon she bobbed off to see some clients while I undertook a rare and miserable shopping trip to Aldi, then back home to make a large pan of spag bog sauce, there's enough for a couple of days and I might use the leftovers to make a little GF lasagne tomorrow.

I did want to go running with NLFR tonight (it's on the Chevin) but I guess I should give it a miss, I'll go swimming tomorrow morning instead then run in the afternoon. I might even get the turbo all set up, as my Zwift subscription has just started up after a summer hiatus.

Monday 1 November 2021

A New Diagnosis

 We went to see the new James Bond movie last night, on the wholeI thought it was pretty good. It lost some of its intrigue and archetypal flavour towards the end, but generally wasn't too bad.  The purist in me would like to point that the missiles fired by HMS Dragon were surface-to-air and categorically didn't have multiple warheads, but hey, I guess a bit of artistic licence is acceptable :-)  We actually left the house at 5.00pm to go and see it, in doing so we managed to avoid the hoardes of Trick or Treaters that descend on our neighbourhood, it really is bloody outrageous what goes on.  A large percentage of the American population in Harrogate are known to live in the vicinity, so parents want their little darlings to have the maximum bang for their buck and ship in by the hundred.  You literally couldn't flipping park.  Grumpy, moi? Yes of course.

Gym session this morning followed by an 11.00 appointment at the doctor's.  I haven't been feeling too great these past few months, there has been a slow and insidious increase in the amount of pain and discomfort I've been getting from my inflammatory arthritis and eventually I went to my GP for advice rather than the hospital/rheumatologist, chiefly because I'm on annual reviews at the hospital and I suspect they'd just shove me back on methotrexate if I bumped up there, certainly the last time I sought their advice they weren't very constructive with their advice.  My own GP, however, is a lovely woman who also suffers from a form of seronegative IA and understands exactly what is going on.  The tests have come back largely negative but with a heightened rheumatoid factor, this in itself isn't enough for huge concern but she does think that my symptoms are much more akin to psoriatic arthritis (PsA) than RA.  She's actually not the first to say that, one of the staff nurses at hospital said much the same and I'm glad to have a firmer diagnosis.  I should point out here that you don't have to have psoriasis to have PsA although a lot of sufferers do - I don't.  We had a decent discussion and she's right that if you've lived with an IA condition for a while you tend to take the pain as a normal part of life, certainly that's been the case for me and I've stopped moaning quite so much about it as I used to ....... these past six months have been hard though and I am fed up with waking up in the morning feeling like I've been trampled on by a herd of elephants, it also makes running that much more of a chore and I have been in danger of falling out of love with it.  Our lap round the Tour of Pendle on Saturday reminded me of how much angst such things can cause, the last time I did that race - think it was the back end of 2017 - I was in horrible, screaming agony and my hip joints felt like they were lined with spikes ..... I had to have a moment at the end of the race and I do believe tears were trickling down my cheeks, not from emotion but just the effort and focus of trying to keep going, I guess it was relief it was over.  Oddly enough that race was the one occasion when another person from the fell running community has said anything unkind about my condition, the person in question has commented several times about my wife being a more capable runner than me - something I'm absolutely happy about - but clearly he felt that I was malingering and letting our gender down by allowing myself to finish well behind her.  I gently tried to let him know that it was a miracle I finished at all, but I doubt he took it on board;  c'est la vie eh?  I think he's got more problems than me if he thinks that way.  Anyhow, to finish this off I had a quick shot of depo-medrol in the bum at the doctor's, bless her for doing that .... it's a corticosteroid and with luck will calm things down and give me a bit of respite.  I really need it.