Saturday, 30 August 2014

This time next week…

I’ve just read my previous blog posts for the last three years of Glenmore 24 and I’m really really looking forward to running it again.  I feel I’m still heading into unknown territory regards my running and recovery, but all that I’ve done since the end of the surgery, chemo and radiotherapy has boosted my confidence of what I’m capable of, the West Highland Way Race was so special and I felt it was… naw, I can’t say the word ‘cause it doesn’t feel right to say it loud so I’ll spell it, e.a.s.y!  Completing the WHW was my goal, time irrelevant, so maybe because I kept the pace within the early cut-offs meant I wasn’t so wasted at the end, and the euphoria knowing I was going to do it kept my head clear and my legs fuelled.  I’m not into over analysis but this boost this has given me confidence to aim high, my pace is still slow compared to what it was pre-treatment but my goal is 100 miles minimum! 

A wee update on the medical side, my mouth is still very sensitive to a lot of foods, it is fifteen months since my treatment finished and I had hoped that I’d be managing to eat more by now, there is improvement though, I can manage a bag of Wotsits with a pint, they kinda dissolve.  The one big plus is I have recently had three visits to St. Johns Hospital, Livingston, some x-rays, and impressions have been taken, and they are working on dentures for the meantime but since the bones in my top jaw have not been affected by the treatment, there is a possibility of implants in the future, my bottom jaw is a different story, the bone is damaged from the radiotherapy and when I saw the x-ray I thought there are enough pins in it to resemble the Forth Bridge!  But loads of folk manage with dentures so I’m sure I will too. I’m coming to terms with the minor details of having two thirds of my tongue removed, like I’ll never ever be able to lick my lips, or eat an ice cream cone, there is not enough tongue left to stick out, not something you think about until it’s something you can’t do, but if I don’t have a napkin, I’ll have a sleeve! Go on, next time you’re having a meal try eating without tidying up the wee bits of food that touch your lips with your tongue and you’ll get my drift.  Anyway, it still beat the alternative, cancer is a bastard, and so is the treatment but hopefully I’ll be able to live a healthy life for a good few years yet.

Looking at the time, it is now approaching 11.00pm, next week I will have been running for nearly eleven hours, hopefully the weather will be kind to us, I’ll be picking up my iPod soon with my playlist of cheesy tunes and foot stompers, I only use music in the wee hours of a 24 hour races, never any other races, ear-phones are anti-social but I’ll only have them in one ear, the camaraderie at Glenmore is second to none, between the music and the blether I’ll have a good night, come the morning I may crash and burn and have to walk for more than I intend but I’m going for it, I have no doubt in my ability to push on when in discomfort and when Ada blows the horn at 12 noon on Sunday, I’ll be lying on the grass and my guts will be on the outside, no matter the distance it will have been the best I can do.

Last year I filled my decanter with another gift, the stopper hasn’t moved since, but I hope I’ll do it justice,  I will fill a hip flask with this fine malt and I’m hoping the endorphins coursing round my body on Sunday night will enable me to share a wee malt in celebration.

If you want to read my previous reports, here you go.