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Triathlon in aid of FMA UK

Image Robert Powell is going to undertake The Blenheim Triathlon on the 7th June in aid of fibromyalgia. Please support him by donating towards his mammoth challenge using JustGiving. 

I’m told that it’s often easier to deal with a medical condition once you can give it a name, once the diagnosis gives it an identity.  In our case, my wife’s diagnosis of Fibromyalgia brought mixed feelings.  It was certainly instructive to finally have an answer to all of the bizarre, and seemingly unconnected bouts of anxiety and panic, nose and stomach problems, and of course the ubiquitous muscular distress, but also not that much of a comfort given that neither of us ever heard of it, and the name itself (without the benefit of a public school Latin education) sounds pretty scary. 

Ironic then, when we discovered that our next-door neighbour suffers with it, and (indeed) that there is a whole group of suffers in our local town of Winsford.  So this got me thinking; if something which had a ‘name’ was unknown to us both, especially given my interest in things anatomical, and my wife being a nurse, and therefore awareness was presumably low, what was being done?

Well, as it turns out, as much as the dedicated folks within and without FMA UK can, but I couldn’t help but compare activity, progress, funding and support awareness and profile of my condition; diabetes, and therefore diabetes UK. 

It was also a worsening of my condition, as well as my wife’s, that led me to think more seriously about the health of both of us.  There’s a lot of good information on improving diabetes, but unfortunately FM seems (as so many more recently discovered conditions) to suffer from all kinds of ‘quack’ information on the net, unsubstantiated by any medical body.  Real, hard objective evidence obviously comes from research, and that needs funding. 

So the plan was obvious – improve my health with something likely to hurt almost as much as Mrs Powell’s legs on a good day, and in the process raise some cash to, in some small way, hopefully help find an answer to her, and others’ leg pain!  In doing so, I probably became quite a pain myself, although not in the leg! 

Image At the time I weighed something like 18.5 stone which, at 5’11 meant I was a similar proportion to an under-inflated space hopper (with similar looks).  My blood pressure wasn’t under-inflated however, being as high as my sugar levels and as such I enjoyed a regular ear-bashing from the nurse and doctors at the 6-monthly check-ups.  So the long haul began.

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