One year off

One year off

having read Irish John's excellent account of his inaugural run a year ago and his consistent progress since, I remembered that June 1st 2016 was an auspicious day for me too, but for quite the opposite reasons.

I was the fittest I have ever been in my life and then woke up to find the doctors had plugged me in to every machine on Earth and pulled the plug on my doing any kind of exercise. No running. No lifting. No nothing.

I am not entirely sure if I am proud or ashamed to report that my first question was "when can I start training again?" It's probably a good thing they didnt answer me directly as I think the truth would have finished me off at that time.

However. there is a happy ending to this tale: now a year on and I am back out there, pumping iron and pounding pavements, with the blessing of my cardiologist. It is a tremendously long road to get back to anywhere near the fitness I had before, and I a finding it much harder work and more frustrating than first time round :( I think when you are starting firness from scratch it is all exciting because every new time, distance weight achieved is a new PB, whereas coming back each new notch is still woefully below where you think you should be) but I appreciate every minute and every ache much more than I did before.

Fitness is for life, and its a marathon (hopefully an ultra), not a sprint. I read so many posts where people have twisted an ankle or got a cold and are despondent because they will lose a week of progress. I chuckle because I remember being exactly like that. I recall mummifying myself in KT tape and zombifying myself on painkillers to do races on injured knees. After a year on the bench I rely have learned the value of patience and looking at the long game. Consistency and persistence are the keys to success in training, but equally in recovery.


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15 Replies

  • What happened that caused you to sent to hospital after being so fit?

  • Ah well said Rig. You got back on it though. No retiring to slippers and a comfy chair, and sedentary old age 💪✔️🏋️🏃😀

  • Welcome home Rig xxx

  • Welcome back Rig. You were always an inspiration, and your battle back to top fitness (and I have no doubt you will get back to where you were and surpass it; you've got that tenacity and dedication) is a shining example for the rest of us.

  • Welcome back, buddy. Onwards and upwards.

  • Life would be so boring if it was all same, same 😴 and the test of a man (or woman) is when things get tough and how we cope. It sounds as if you've coped brilliantly.

    It's great to have you back again Rig. And I love the fact you've got a PB in anaemia 😂

  • Very well done. The strength and determination that you have shown (as well as the humour) speaks volumes about character. Good luck for the next year of getting stronger, fitter and faster👍👏

  • It says it all ...and it is so good to have you, wonderfully honest, plain-spoken and completely inspirational, back with us x


    I am even now, still a tad afraid of you :)

  • You have clearly come so far.... not just in terms of recovery but in the mental approach to what your goals are etc which you can't put a vaulted on. Good to have a reset too in terms of ability and milestones so that you can really celebrate each new achievement you make, and you really should celebrate that 😎

  • Crickey Rigs was that a year ago...scary times. Applaud you and respect you for coming back from your troubles.

    P.s Am drinking so much water now because you told me to...and no cramp😉

    Any more on that youtube / blog you were thinking of setting up? Not sure if you were joking about running while filming with a selfie stick..😄x

  • WARRIOR !!!

    Good to have you back Rig and I know its been a year ...... I have been counting the days :-D :-D :-D

    We love ya, Man ! :-) xxx

  • The great Rig was struck down a year ago - but we KNEW he would be back. When I first came on this forum you were leaping through fires, carrying incredibly heavy, strange-shaped weights, doing squats 30x a day and just being the fittest person I had ever come across. Then you posted the story of what you were like before you started running - and it was absolutely incredible. Whenever I'm flagging I still think of you wrapped around a tree gasping after that first run. Truly an inspiration!

  • "Every setback paves the way for a great comeback" - welcome back! 🙂

  • It's so good to have you back again, Rig. It must have been such a tough year for you but you have come through it with tenacity, determination and courage under fire. Much respect to you x

  • Says it all, Rig. Fitness is for life, and it's the mark of the man that you sucked it up and then set out to regain the strength you'd lost. Hope this year is kinder to your health.

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