Musings on exercise

2 03 2013

Please excuse a ‘personal’ blog for today. Trying to get back in the swing of this blogging malarky, properly inspired by some wonderful bloggers out there who do this madness every day.

I’ve been musing a lot about exercise this past week. Had a friend complain jokingly that I have been doing too much exercise lately, which started me thinking. Then YogaDude (more on this later) joked about doing exercise so that we can eat copius amounts of pancakes.

But why do we exercise? More specifically, why do *I* exercise?

I know on an intellectualy level that exercise is (generally)  good for you. Improving fitness and health, focusses the mind, helps with weight management etc etc. But this is boring right?! And that probably explains my somewhat flitty attitude to exercise. At the moment, no way would you catch me in a gym, pounding a treadmill to get precisely nowhere.

No, where I get off is in variety. This week is perfect. Had a new teacher in street dance Monday totally changed my view of what I have enjoyed about these classes. Cute and fun choreography abounded and although I didn’t quite get my sweat on like previous classes, great sense of achievement after nailing the routine. Contrast this with the last instructor who pandered to my secret, previously unknown love of all things Britney (but in serious moderation, and limitted strictly to his sessions) and made the class swear on the inside (in a good way) when he walked in drinking redbull one sesh. Adore the group feeling there too – all there to have a good time, and never mind when we look like raving loons with arms and legs getting in a total muddle!

Tuesday came my new love with yoga. And not just any yoga either. Superhardcore Ashtanga yoga. Yeah. Love getting sweaty and feeling like an idiot, faceplanting into the floor approx 4 times per session, and giggling insanely when this inevitable event occurs. Not sure this fits with the superserious attitude of most of the class, but come on – this sh*t is supposed to be for fun right?! And oh my does it make me feel amazing. Feel stronger, more powerful, more in control of myself and my body after just a few sessions. Worked sooo hard this week and my oh my have I felt it! Sleepy time at the end of sessions=me wrapped up with a blanket with cuddles from resident YogaCat and a chance to recall amazing meditations from my ninja days. Leave sessions with a massive grin on my face.

Managed to catch up with friends and family Wednesday and Thursday, although weird side effect of yoga I have noted is that my appetite drops for the day or 2 after each weekly session. Partly it seems that I get super thirsty and so fill up on water. I also get really fussy about what I’m putting into my body (think fruit, green tea, lean protein, pretty much zero bread/pasta/usual adored carbs). But mostly I’m just plain not hungry. Must be the twisting or something squeezing my insides!!!!

End the week with some more dancey fun and today went for a blissful run in the Spring sunshine, and you can see exactly what I mean about variety. On the to do list for the year is to get back into climbing once the other half is back in the country, learn to snowboard, and perhaps try to learn to surf (standing up not just body boarding).

Part of me really wants to get back into martial arts. Loved the energy and fun of both Ninpo and Aikido, although currently time is a major factor to consider.

So this is what I’m loving about excercise: fun, variety, socialising and improved wellbeing. Defintiely not any sense of an endpoint. No real goal in terms of fitness, endurance, weight loss, event trainging. End point is simply to have a good time and meet fab people.

And this seems to be working.



5 04 2012

OK, promised I’d post this awesome pep talk from recent boss.

As 1st year doctors, we get called all sorts. Now rather pompously called foundation year 1 doctors, previous generations were called (pre registration) house officers. This evolved into many iterations of naming… typically along the flattering lines of being called “houseplants”… I guess we brighten up the place but don’t actually achieve very much most of the time 😀

Recent boss commented on this fact, as we still refer to ourselves as house officers despite the rebrand. In his words;

“If it look like a housedog, smells like a housedog, and barks like a housedog…well… *shrugs*”


Moving on

5 04 2012

Another 4 months has flown by, and I’m onto the last job of my FY1 year.

Started work in August on a ridiculously busy medical job, where I felt I never left the hospital, and certainly never separated from it mentally. But I worked with some great people, noone in the hospital is ever as good a friend to you as “med reg”, especially when they’re your own. Even after I finished on medicine, those links were what saw me through much of job number 2. I learnt loads, had to make decisions, and am definitely a better doctor (if not person!) because of my experiences.

Fast forward to Christmas and started on surgery with a little bit of apprehension. Lets face it, I’m not exactly typical surgery fodder, rarely cope well with *ahem* aggressive personalities, and whilst theatre is often hilarious, I’ve never really been into being the one actually cutting people up. But seems I lucked out. Fab bosses, hilarious registrars, great SHOs, and a wonderful bunch of assorted others. Life got left a bit by the wayside somewhere along the way, and suspect I have quite a bit of making up to do with the boy in the coming months. When the job was good, it was incredible. When it was bad… well…. I’m just glad the people around me provided the compassion, support and/or giggles neccessary to get through.

So now I’m just starting psychiatry. I’ve always had a bit of a soft spot for the subject, even ran a book club for a while with a strong psychiatric focus to the books we chose, and was quite keen for an F1 job involving it. 2 days of induction was gruelling though, so looking forward to getting stuck in for real after a wonderfully work-free weekend!


Kindness at work

12 03 2012

I have been incredibly fortunate to come accross some of the kindest Drs, nurses, physios, OTs, social workers, dieticians during the past few years. But I’m still reeling in a good way (is there a word that means reeling in a good way?) from one experience a year ago. I was thanked by a consultant. Simply, specifically, honestly, proper-from-the-heart thanked. People in positions of power have this amazing ability to help those junior to them, something with teaching, sometimes with time, sometimes with effort, sometimes simply with kindess.

This same Dr lived his life this way. Shift work is vital to the way our NHS works, and he facilitated this in many ways. Thanking the night staff and arranging meetings to allow the night staff to leave on time formed an important part of the work ethic. He would always be understanding of the extreme pressure being up all night has on one’s mental state.

I see kindness at work every day now. Senior nurses taking junior doctors under their wings, consultants acknowledging their trainees’ good work, registrars making their house officers and SHOs feel that little bit more part of the team with the words of praise. I work with nurses who comfort us juniors on tough days, and giggle with us when things are good. Dieticians who go to incredible lengths to help me out, just because we asked. The *entire* radiology department for being so understanding when I pitch up with yet another superurgenthastobedonenow scan…and individuals in said department who will chase me down a corridor to tell me slots have become available!

If I can be half as kind in my work as these incredible individuals, I’ll be happy.

New year, new job

31 01 2012

So, started a new job at the tail end of the year, and found my feet at last…. and I’m *loving* it! Great bosses, fabbier contemporaries, and the middle grades just make coming to work hilarious. Add to that a great bunch of patients, and it’s a winning combination. Get my arse handed to me most days, but am enjoying trying to keep up. Coming up with the list of #rulesforsurgicalhouseofficers slowly but surely.

  1. The boss is always right
  2. As per 1. Even if they’re wrong. In fact, especially if they’re wrong.
  3. CALL FOR HELP. Early and often.
  4. Leave work. Eventually you’ll have to. You might as well get a good night’s rest before rinsing and repeating. On call is there for a reason.
  5. It’s ok to feel lonely and/or terrified in this job. And to admit to it. Even the occasional senior does (but only at 3am).
  6. Your team can be your lifeline. Look after them, they’re already looking after you. (And yes, pilfering sandwiches from a lunchtime meeting when the boss is stuck in clinic or theatre counts).
  7. Nurses are AMAZING. Tell them.
  8. KY jelly sachets. Always carry some in your work bag. Makes you look like a freak, but saves time on endless ward rounds.
  9. If they stop kicking your arse when you mess up, it means they’ve given up on you. Try to remember this.

…to be added to as the job continues.


Happy new year

4 01 2012

Haappy new year!

Thought I’d just have a little think back to the year just past. Here are my top 10 bits of 2011:

  1. Ghana – top mates, interesting medicine, and a whole lotta memories
  2. Running the half marathon with zilch training, the day after an all you can eat Chinese!!
  3. Centre Parcs. Never been before, but a whole lotta fun with great company!
  4. The amazing Uncaged Monkeys show the night I finished finals
  5. Lake District. Plenty of walking and gatecrashed a stag do… ooops!
  6. Barcelona…. strictly the end of the year before, but was wonderful…. Veggie tapas epicness!
  7. Skeptics in the pub, my monthly nerdfest
  8. National Trust. I am officially a member. How did that happen?
  9. Weekend get-aways. The UK is beautiful, city, country, doesn’t matter! Managed a long weekend in Majorca too!
  10. Magic shows: Derren Brown and Barry and Stuart

Here’s hoping 2012 is filled with as many laughs, new friends, and inspiration.. Would love to mention all those who have made the long days that little bit brighter, but I’d be here forever, and besides, I have a sneaking suspicion they know already! 😀


Royal Wedding Street Party

30 04 2011

So yesterday was a lovely day. The sun almost shone, and our street all came out to celebrate long into the evening. Sadly my camera ran out of batteries,but managed to sneak a couple of shots first!

Unfortunately it all meant I was far to excited to work for most of the day… Probably a good thing, I’m exhausted !