In fact the pain began yesterday.
It’s now all about grim determination as regards reversing my declining hillwalking capacity and so the hard road to recovery has, or possibly has not, begun. I could be over dramatic and call it “the last throw of the dice” but in reality I have no idea whether or not that is in fact the case. One thing I do know is that, in my present state, managing long hill days is no longer viable therefore there is only one option left…exercise!
A horrible thought but in fairness I have left it as a last resort, the last chance saloon – but there are only so many clichés one would really want to use in any piece of writing so I’ll stop now before I sound like I’m trying to replace Stuart Cosgrove on “Off the Ball” (Radio Scotland lunchtime Saturdays – don’t miss it!)
Last night I contemplated the ceiling as I lay on my back, both knees at my neck. I wondered why I had left it two years to return to these back and hamstring stretches and to be honest, with both knees at my neck, it didn’t take me long to find an answer. It was bloody uncomfortable! Rigidity has substituted flexibility in the intervening period and as I twisted into the rotational exercises, trying to get my back to move was like attempting to pull open a solidly locked door. I suspect improvement may take some time.
Of far greater concern to me is my need to lose weight. I’m at my maximum at present and need to shed a minimum of 10kg. Given my penchant for a decent nosh up this is bad news indeed. On top of that J is determined to make me go to this circuit class she’s started to attend…and I’m fast running out of excuses. On the bright side I reckon my back exercises will cripple me before I’m forced to go. But it’s not all good news. J’s sister, The Cupcake Queen, has gym at her house so I’m not going to be allowed to escape my punishment that easily.
The Fatdog is also under scrutiny in terms of her hill fitness. A puzzling intermittent front shoulder problem has seen her occasionally slowing up dramatically on normal doggy walks and looking pathetic as if someone’s just taken away her box of Bonios. Thankfully this slowing up has never happened on a major walk but we took a trip to the vet to get her checked out.
The vet couldn’t find an obvious cause so step one is to take her off her steroids (for an ear infection). It seems that the steroids she’s on are not anabolic steroids which would build muscle bulk, but those which have the opposite effect and take away muscle bulk. The vet seems to think it’s a possibility that she may have lost some protection to nerves etc. by the loss of muscle. We didn’t like the long term use of steroids anyway, so were quite glad at this different approach. If her ears flare up again the vet reckoned there were lots of other ways of tackling the problem rather than by using steroids.
So…it looks like the Fatdog will have to go on a training programme as well!