Hello Stranger

What happened to this year? Seriously what happened?  Here’s a quick recap of what happened to me and the family over the last 3 months or so.

My birthday

Faithful hound died

Kidney infection from HELL!!

Puppy mayhem

Mystery pain under my right rib

Lost my voice for 2 weeks

FINALLY getting back into running!!

Yes, that much. It’s taken me a while to get to grips with what’s happened so far this year.  My birthday wasn’t that much, I’m older, I survived another year (44 years young!!) but over that weekend my mad nutter of a poodle was ill.

What happened to the nutty poodle? He lost all sense of balance and wasn’t able to stand up.  The initial thought was that he’d eaten something odd or he had an ear infection.  In and out of the vets over the weekend but he never recovered. Sob!!

Hector – a bouncing ball of white fluff that just didn’t stand still for long, constantly on the go. He loved his cuddles, he trusted me to clip his coat, a harmless whirlwind of bouncing fluff. It took a few years to figure out what he loved more than THE BALL.  He loved running with me on his harness, exploring and keeping me safe from harm.  I truly adored him for that.  Sob!  Here’s Hector at his best enjoying a lovely sunny day after getting his big fluffy coat removed.  Like I said, he was a mad nutter of a poodle.  I’ll miss you mate.  I still miss you.

This is Hector, just clipped, being a nutter!

During all of this I somehow managed to get a bad kidney infection. Three rounds of antibiotics later I beat the infection!!  Starting to think that 2016 is a very bad year!! My running is practically non-existent at the moment.

After a couple weeks of watching our remaining hound Willow the greyhound go off her food and every time we’re out for a walk she tries to drag us over to every big white fluffy dog I start looking into getting a puppy. I do my research and talk to breeders and eventually I talk to one lady who asks me “what do you really want?”  Well, I’d love another dog who loves running as much as Hector did, a hound who will protect me if needed, a hound who loves cuddles as much as Hector did, a partner in crime for my kids and a best buddy for Willow our greyhound – who might plot death and destruction to the new arrival!! I’m then asked what Hectors personality was like and have I owned any other dogs.  Well, a border collie, a standard poodle with a few screws missing and a greyhound.  What was my favourite?  The border collie.  Why don’t you get a border collie?  You know what they’re like.  Me – stumped!!  A month later I travel to Plymouth (yes Plymouth!!) and pick up Penny the coiled spring (collie x springer).

After a rocky first day home Penny has helped all of us smile again. She’s cheeky but very eager to please.  She’s was a constant mess machine but that’s getting better each day!  As for Willow plotting her destruction – Willow the small furry animal destroyer has turned into the soppiest thing ever and lets Penny get away with almost anything!! All the things Hector was not allowed to do, Penny gets it all!

Here’s both of them together

Still, through all of this, I’ve not managed to run more than 3 miles for a couple months now. The frustrating pain under my right rib felt like it was getting worse and with various visits to the doctors they book a scan and blood tests for me.  The blood tests are clear and the scan comes back clear.  Well, thankfully it’s nothing going wrong inside but it hurts!! An appointment with my physio and he identifies my stomach muscle (abdominus rectus) might be to blame.  I’m given various exercises and stretches and after months of pain I’m back to running again!

I then develop a cough and lose my voice for 2 weeks!! Do I give up?  NO!!!!

I’m back to running – FINALLY!!!! I’ve completely lost all the speed but the stamina is there. I’ve put on weight – I jiggle in places that are just not funny anymore!! Well, sometimes it’s funny!

I’m using my bicycle on a new – stupidly tough!! – turbo trainer as much as I can.

I got myself a cheap treadmill (dreadmill) to finally work up to running UPHILL!

I’ve plotted a tough multi-terrain route of 10 miles to train on as much as I can with a plan to get under 2 hours for that route.

It’s been a tough few months but I’m back. Plotting, planning, RUNNING!!

Keep on running


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