Summer Woes & Winter Worry

What went wrong?

What went so wrong for me? This was the summer, the summer I was going to get back in to shape and really kick on with my running. After not getting too far with my running last winter I made a good start to the year, by April I was aiming to run the Wexford Half Marathon by the end of the month, I was in very good shape, it was going well, but things started to change. I was getting more and more tired, I wasn’t able to run as much, my distances were dropping every week during April, I was losing my body, the energy wasn’t there anymore, so what was going on…

Well, 6 months later I finally know the real reason, my post transplant vaccination schedule. It’s the reason why I couldn’t run the Wexford Half, it’s the reason why I had to cancel the Rock ‘n’ Roll Half, the Terenure 5 Mile, The Longwood 3/4 Marathon, and most disappointingly, the Dublin Marathon.

Taking part in the Dublin Marathon again was one of the things I thought most about while I was in hospital, I would dream of crossing the finish line and getting my medal, it’s one of the things that helped me keep my focus and determination while I was being treated, I wasn’t going to let cancer stop me achieving my goals. Although I won’t get to run Dublin this year, I have a nice plan for net year but I will just have to wait and see how things go. Running Dublin this year wasn’t an unrealistic goal, but once the vaccinations began I quickly watched my chances dissipate.

The vaccination schedule started on the 11th of April, and that’s around the exact time my running took a nose dive. It’s a 2 year vaccination schedule however during the first 6 months it was very top heavy and I was getting between 3 or 4 vaccinations each visit, I really didn’t realise how much of an effect it would have on my body. I realised that my body would take a hit for at least 1 or 2 weeks after each vaccination, so I wasn’t able to run for most of the summer as I just didn’t have the energy. Thankfully I was able to do some yoga which kept me happy, if I can’t get out running I will always look for an alternative that will still benefit me, and yoga really helped while I couldn’t run. My specialist explained to me that as my immune system hasn’t recovered yet, the vaccinations were having a harder, longer effect on me.

Now the 6 months of vaccinations are over, I’m so relieved, I have ran 3 times a week for the last 5 weeks and things are looking good again, however, winter is looming.

My Winter Worry

Come on then winter, let’s get this over with. Maybe spending the winter with my mask on and under a blanket would keep me protected?

I have the immune system of a 2 year old apparently. It’s not something I can do too much about really as time is the healer with this one, my body needs another year for my immune system to build back up after the transplant, so I just need to get through this winter and hopefully my body will have recovered sufficiently enough to keep me protected going forward. My specialist explained I might always be immuno-supressed forever, but once I get to about 2 years post transplant it should have recovered enough to give me a relatively decent amount of protection and resistance. 2 years is also her target for me, that if I make it to 2 years post transplant then my survival rate is very high, so it’s something positive to think about, especially considering I am already well on the way top that point now.

Until then, I am most likely going to pick up everything and anything that’s going around during the course of this winter, bugs, colds, the flu, whatever it is I’m open for business. There’s only so much I can do to avoid picking these things up so I’ll try my best, but one way or another I just can’t avoid being taken down at some point through the winter, either way, I’m hoping that if it happens, my body will have a little bit of fight to lessen the effect it has on me.

It is just 18 days until I return to work, I’m really looking forward to it, it will be the last step in getting my life back on track, it’s going to be a tough one for my body to work through but I’ll get there, it’ll just take time.

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Parkrun Ireland

My Parkrun Piece

As I discussed in a recent blog, the Parkrun has been a big factor in my recovery during the course of the last year for many different reasons, both physically and mentally. As a runner, and a volunteer, I thoroughly enjoy and look forward to taking part in it each week, it is something positive that helps put a smile on my face.

Click on the link below to read my piece:

http://blog.parkrun.com/ie/2018/10/03/the-long-road-to-recovery/

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The Rathfarnham 5k

It’s been a while!

It’s really been a while since my last race, the 7th of April to be exact, the summer didn’t go to plan unfortunately but today was the day I managed to complete 3 runs for the week for the 5th week in a row, the best consistency I have had in a long long time, and I did it in style.

Post Cancer PB

I left it very late to register but decided yesterday afternoon I would go for it, the Rathfarnham 5k this morning, and a beautiful morning it was, a great morning for a race. I was definitely nervous lining up as it’s been a while and I still can never quite tell how my body will react. Niamh as there to support me which kept me happy, off I went with my fingers crossed to sneak in under the 25 mins, and low and behold I managed to hold steady and finish with a good sprint at the end to come in with a time of 24:32, I definitely wasn’t expecting to do so well, or to have the energy to jump in the air crossing the finish line.

I loved today, the whole race experience, pinning on the number, the nerves, the race itself, the whole atmosphere, crossing the finish line, it’s really an enjoyable experience, especially getting a PB. Not to mention that I bumped in to loads of runners that I know from various clubs and got to have plenty of chats with them which was great.

I couldn’t be more chuffed with today, and I’m delighted to add this race to my results sheet as my 3rd post cancer race, and a PB for my troubles. I’m also delighted that I have now managed 3 runs a week for the last 5 weeks, it’s the consistency I have been waiting a long time for. I am one happy runner today 🙂

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My Happy Magazine Q&A Article

I’m Home

I’m home, home from Portugal, time to get back to a bit of normality, although I reckon I could have stayed in Portugal for at least another month. We had the most incredible time over there, and wow did we need it, it’s amazing what a bit of sunshine does for the body and the mind 🙂

Happy Magazine

As you would expect, I tend to get talking to many different people with an association to cancer, whether it’s someone who has gone through it themselves, or is currently going through it, or perhaps someone who knows of someone going through it. One of those people that I have come to know is the lovely Holly Kennedy, founder and writer of the online magazine called Happy Magazine, another cancer survivor with an inspiring story to tell. Holly’s site is one based on daily positivity for people going through or affected by cancer,  you can check out her site on the link below:

https://www.happymagazine.ie/

Holly asked me if I would be interested in doing a Q&A session for her magazine and I gladly obliged, so this week I’m posting the article, if you would like to have a read just click on the link below:

https://www.happymagazine.ie/2018/09/your-stories-chris-proby-on-never-giving-up.html

This day 5 weeks I’m returning to work for the first time since August 2015, so I’m certainly going to enjoy the next 5 weeks as best as I can. I’m currently working on an exciting project which I hope to have up and running before my return to work, so watch this space!

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