Thursday, 18 September 2014


If you follow me on Twitter, you will see I have been poorly the last week. After waking up one morning with a dry cough and a sniffle, it quickly escalated into a lot of pain and illness which resulted in flu. Brilliant.

Last week started off pretty good though! I returned back to normal training through my running club. Going back to see all my friends and fellow runners was fantastic! The feeling of normality in my training schedule gave me hope that my injury is long behind me now. I managed to attend the social run on Tuesday and also track on Thursday, both of which I haven't been to since early June.
I was a little nervous diving into a heavy HIIT session with fellow club members at the track. When I also arrived, I had a bit of a dry cough but thought this might be due to pollution from my cycle ride there. Once we got started with the drills, it had disappeared and so thought no more.

After drills of high knees, heel flicks, skipping and strides the session was set. 4x 1200m at 5-10k pace followed by 4x 400m hard. I set off with a club friend who went off ahead of me but my aim was to try and stay within 10m of her. We'd of normally run close together before my injury anyway so keeping her in close sight was good going in my eyes. After 2x 1200m, I was seriously flagging. Sweating bucket loads and huffing and puffing, I carried on a strong as possible but was running more towards 10K pace than 5K. I also had the 4x 400m in the back of my mind too so needed to keep fuel in the tank for them.

Our coach had been sneaky as when the 400m came round, the rest periods decreased. 90secs, 45secs, 30secs, 15secs. Wowee were these hard! I actually managed to speed up for these and really pick my feet up which felt brilliant! I was however glad to see the back of them afterwards. My core felt tight, legs like jelly but my mind reassured as I didn't feel like I had lost to much speed in my absence. Cycling home wasn't too bad either but I was out like a light once my head hit my pillow that night.

Friday however, was a very different day. Waking up for work, I felt all bunged up and heady like I was getting a cold. The dry cough also returned. 'Sods law!' I thought. Now I've got my fitness back I get a bloody cold! Still though, I went to work but by lunchtime I felt so awful I came back home to rest. Snoozing on the sofa all afternoon, I felt myself getting worse and worse. By nighttime, all sorts of symptoms had started, which I won't go into deal about but it involved sick buckets and many toilet trips.

By Saturday I had a high temperature and my joints, muscles and skin were sore to touch. I was in so much pain (especially my legs) I hadn't slept a wink the night before and cold flannels were my go-to in a bid to cool me down. I rang NHS Direct who booked me into a clinic a few miles away to see a GP. Even getting there via taxi seemed like so much effort. I was shaking due to pain and dehydration and felt so sick! I also looked like DEATH!

The doctor diagnosed flu and declared me contiagious (my fiancé who kindly came to the clinic with me shuffled his chair back at this point). She stocked me up on dehydration sachets which you add to water and told me to sleep, sleep and sleep more. I couldn't actually wait to get home back to my bed to practically quarantine myself.
(my flu flighting friends)

By Monday, I still felt awful so stayed at home. The aching has subsided but the headiness and sweats (sorry) hadn't. I did manage to sleep that night so opted to try work out on the Tuesday. Getting there was awful. I took the bus and I felt like all my senses were on high alert. When I get a cold, I have this thing where cigarette smoke stinks. I mean, I know it does anyway but I mean it smells so bad you can taste it in your throat and it lingers there. Anyway, this man got on the bus and sat next to me. I knew instantly he had just smoked a cigarette. The smell was SO bad (sorry to this man. When I'm flu free it honestly wouldn't bother me) it made me gag. When I got to work I felt so rough I made a Lemsip in the hope to clear my sinuses and rid the smell.

By around 10.30am, things did not feel right. I felt boiling hot, I could feel the sweat on my forehead and before I knew it, I was rushing to the loo retching. Luckily I avoided being sick but the dizziness was there and I honestly felt really upset at how I felt. My boss sent me home to which I spent the next 48 hours nauseous, weak, hot and snotty. What's worse was that I was too scared to take a Lemsip in case it made me sick so I was avoiding all medication and relying on my trusty Vic to clear my sinuses.

By Wednesday afternoon, I had 80% recovered. After a long soak in the bath, I felt awakened so much so that I even pulled the blinds up to let natural light in (before this dark rooms were my solace). I did however have a nasty cough but after everything I had been through, I was happy to settle for this. All this illness has well and truly wiped me and out and I hate to say it, but training went out of the window. Walking up stairs tired me out! Once the flu is 100% gone, I am going to start off lightly (hopefully at the weekend) but heading out on a jog. I'll try my best to make it 6-8 miles but I will not even be looking at the pace. It is a shame really as I was enjoying getting back into training hard but I do fear diving back in if I am not fully recovered.

Another thing I am also going to do is book in for a flu jab. Never do I want to feel like this again! The NHS here in the UK does offer it to patients who are at risk of flu (e.g. elderly, asthmatic) but you can also purchase the inoculation for a small fee if you don't quality for it automatically. I would highly recommend it to anyone, especially those who are very outdoorsy or live in large cities. The more people around you, the easier it is to pick it up. With the flu jab, you can be reassured that all you can contract is a cold. That's something I can definitely settle for. Find out more information on the NHS's flu vaccination HERE.

Here's to a productive update next time. One involving exercise.  

Lipstick Runner.

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