The Ramblings of a Cyclopath

Welcome!

Thank you for visiting Challenging Times, The Ramblings of a Cyclopath.

Blogging seemed a good way to publicise a charity cycle from Vietnam to Cambodia with a group of friends who became affectionately known as The Cyclopaths. Still chronicling my cycle training and challenges, four years on, this blog now also offers insights into my experience of living with Young Onset Parkinson’s Disease. By doing so, I hope to promote an understanding and provide an easy opening to a conversation about the trials, tribulations and the occasional triumphs of living with Parkinson’s.

Blog Posts

New Year, New Start

I’ve been pretty damned good at following a comprehensive exercise programme since diagnosis nearly seven years ago. The suggestion and indeed the emerging evidence that I may be rewarded with a slower disease progression is a pretty good motivator. Despite…

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Outpatient DisAppointment

The challenge at a previous outpatient appointment was being asked to rate how I was feeling on a scale of 1 – 10. The challenge for my most recent appointment was to quantify what percentage of the time I was…

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Body Language

Being cold and having Parkinson’s is not a harmonious relationship. A couple of degrees below comfortably warm and my body reacts as though I was in the Antarctic. It displays a shivering that is completely out of my control. It…

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Deja Vu

I’ve been here before (Don’t Blame It On Me) and I should have known better……. My recently purchased MacBook Air was a treat to myself. As can rightly be expected of expensive Apple products, I assumed it would work faultlessly.…

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A Walk in the Park

Parkinson’s – My Uninvited Companion Its a beautiful morning and I’m walking in the park enjoying the autumn sunshine and the stunning colours that this time of year brings. I stop and chat with people who over the past few…

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Low Power Mode

When my mobile phone was new, a 100% battery charge would fairly reliably last two, sometimes three days. After a few years of regular use, I’m lucky if a full battery charge keeps my phone functioning reliably until lunchtime. Regularly…

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BBC Breakfast

When asked if I was interested in taking part in a short film about living with Parkinson’s, to be shown on BBC Breakfast television, I didn’t hesitate to say ‘yes’. Perhaps unexpected for someone who is very self conscious of…

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A New ‘Normal’

I’ve recently realised that my efforts to appear ‘normal’ are not reserved for symptoms of Parkinson’s. Last week, BBC Breakfast were due to come and film a brief scene of our ‘normal’ suppertime at home to give some context to…

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Help!

Fine movements have been becoming more problematic of late. You would notice this if you observed me putting a jacket on or taking it off or trying to do up buttons or a zip. You would also notice this when…

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Unpredictable (III)

Another weather forecast of 1-2% chance of rain every hour over the next 12 hours. Another solo cycle ride. Another soaking. 1-2% Chance of Precipitation So, if I went out 100 times during similar forecasts, it should not rain on…

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Unpredictable (II)

Having written about the unpredictable nature of Parkinson’s only yesterday (Unpredictable I), it was reassuring today to be reminded that there are many other things in life that are unpredictable too. My Motivation I was determined to get up and…

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Unpredictable (I)

Last week, my boxing was as good as it ever has been since I started training four years ago. My personal trainer noticed immediately. I responded quickly to instructions and was full of energy, my movements were fluid and fast…

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A Link Between The ‘Shrinks’

I recently read an interesting blog by Miriam Bram, a fellow Ambassador for the 6th World Parkinson Congress to be held in Barcelona in July 2023. The title, Shame & Stigma of Living with Parkinson’s caught me off guard. Until…

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Time to Get Up

Back in the Day 6am Alarm Snooze Alarm Jump out of bed and into shower Shampoo and condition hair Brush teeth Blow-dry hair Make up Jewellery on Favourite dress on 6.30am ready to face the day Time to Get Up…

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Sparkling!

During the current heatwave, many of us are feeling uncomfortably hot much of the time and that’s certainly my experience over the last few days. Being of a certain age, like many other women, I also have the joys of…

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I Can’t Wait…

I am driving down to Exeter today to pick one of my sons up from his student accommodation to bring him and his belongings home for the summer. It’s forecast to be a scorching day, one of the hottest this…

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It’s Back!

I’ve finally found my exercise mojo! Having lost it somewhere during the mid winter long lockdown, it’s been elusive over the past few months but it’s finally back. It has taken a few friends, a good helping of sunshine, some…

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The ‘Shrinks’

I remember reading Ronald Dahl’s story about The Twits, a hideous couple who catch the ‘Dreaded Shrinks’ which causes their bodies to gradually shrink until there is nothing left of them except a pile of old clothes and a pair…

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