Ian’s Biography- For Triathlon Challenge
I am a 51 year old with 3 fantastic Grandchildren Ben, Ethan and little Gracie (with 2014 bringing along the fourth), four lovely children Kelly, Zoe, Simon and Fern and my beautiful wife Jayne who has been my partner, best friend and soul mate for over 30 years.
My intention is to complete 7 sprint triathlons in 7 days from 10to 16 May 2014. Each day I will be completing
3KM on the rowing machine
20KM on the bike
5KM on the running machine.
The reasons for completing this challenge and raising as much money as possible for my two chosen charities comes through personal experiences and events that have been major factors in my life.
The first charity I have chosen to support is ‘Help for Hero’s’. My association with ‘Help the Heroes’ comes from a five year period that I spent in the Royal Navy, part of which was time I spent in the Falklands at the aftermath of the war in the ‘South Atlantic’. My time in the Navy was ‘cut short’ when I seriously damaged my right knee which meant being hospitalised in Port Stanley. It was two days after I was admitted into hospital that it was tragically burnt down in a terrible accident killing a number of local people. Fortunately, I and other members of the armed forces were in a new wing built of brick, we all managed to get out without any serious consequences. This and the next two weeks waiting to be flown home for treatment, however, did take its toll on my already damaged knee, and despite two major operations it was deemed I was not fit for continuation of active service and was medically discharged.
This ‘set back’ was short lived as at home I had two children who were a major part of my life and I gained a new position with Prudential Assurance enabling me to be at home. Along with this I also had a spell at Trent Polytechnic studying an Economics Degree and whilst studying I linked into an excellent Knees Specialist, who Operated once more on my knee and got me into a position where I could at last take part in another ‘love of my life’ again playing sport. The next few years were fantastic, my family grew with now four children at home, the Job was progressing well and I was back playing Rugby, Cricket and Golf once again.
This brings me onto my second chosen charity ‘Life Blood’ and reasons for choosing to support it. The serenity of my life changed in the July of 2006 just before my 44 Birthday when ‘totally out of the blue’ I was diagnosed with the first of what Doctors believe has been three Pulmonary Embolisms on my lungs. Although there is a family history of DVTs there is no history of the type of condition that has developed with my blood and the many specialists that I have encountered are still flabbergasted about what it is and what causes it. In short ‘I can clot at any thickness/ thinness of my blood and normal blood thinning medications do not stop my blood from clotting and there is no obvious cause. I have had a filter fitted into my ribcage in order to stop the break off of the clots that form travelling up into my Lungs or Heart. For the first five years I was also prescribed a drug called Clexane, this is a drug that needs to be injected into the stomach or top of your thigh. For the first 6 months, I was doing this once a day, then following further problems twice daily. As you can imagine injecting quite a sizable syringe twice a day into your stomach does take its toll and I found that my life, my health, my work and more importantly my family life suffered and even very simple tasks became extremely difficult to deal with.
In May 2012 my life changed again, this time on a positive note. A new drug had just been licenced by NICE, which effectively had the same properties as the Clexane however, this drug was orally taken. Despite the fact that it was licenced initially just for short term use, it was agreed that I could ‘trail it’ to see if it would be a potential replacement for the Clexane on a long term basis. Within a Month of taking this new drug my whole life improved to the extent that I even had the energy to get back to the Gym to try to get my fitness back. 18 months later I am in a position where I can look at tackling this challenge, as a trail I have completed 7 sprint triathlons in 10 days back in October 2013 as well as 7 10k runs over a 7 day period at the end of November 2013.
Hopefully this biography indicates how important this challenge is too me both in terms of the support I can give back to charities like Life Blood and Help the Heroes as well as for my own personal achievement which at a stage two years ago was just to try to get through the day.