Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Back to the future- Ironman and NHS

I have signed up to do another Ironman after a 3 year gap. A lot has happened in this time. I have become ever more engaged with the NHS and have become committed to trying to sustain and maintain the principles of this national institution. I have learnt more about leadership as a member of The Nye Bevan Leadership Programme and I have reflected widely on why I do the things I do. I put on weight, and everyone said how well I looked! I have watched my children developing into adults and amaze me with their knowledge skills and abilities. I have tried to convince myself I am comfortable with who and what I am. However even at 47 I still feel the need to challenge myself to be better than I am and to achieve "goals" that may or may not be valid.

So back to training which definitely gets harder to do as the years go by, or perhaps more accurately harder to recover from. Hard sessions leave me immobile and need 48 hrs recovery. All running seems to carry the risk of injury. But I have a few tricks and tools to help.

Firstly a dog as a running partner! Sometimes good company sometimes he runs of, mostly he ensures I get plenty of breaks on my runs with him. Secondly ten plus years of training helps me get a good idea of what has worked for me in the past. Next is a desire to look more carefully at my diet to see what potential benefits it can have on my general wellbeing by focussing on "better" diet. Above all is now a recognition that I do these things because I enjoy them, and want to do them.... although that can be hard to remember when you climb out of bed in the cold and dark for an early morning bike ride.

Alongside my training I want to develop knowledge about what needs to be done to sustain the NHS. We all need to understand what a great thing it is and how limited and limiting the alternatives we'd be. So to quote Nye Bevan

 " The collective principle asserts that... no society can legitimately call itself civilised if a sick person is denied medical aid because of lack of means. "
—Aneurin Bevan, In Place of Fear

The quality of our society will be much greatly diminished  if we fail to sustain this principle and allowed the NHS to fall into an irreversible decline.

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