Latest posts by Big_G

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Shades Marathon Training

Posted: Today at 15:50

Emmy, the process as I understand is that from a legal point of view a "cause of death" is needed, and because the doctors don't know what went wrong they can't provide that, hence the need for a postmortem (this was totally out of my hands, and ordered by the coroner's office).  If after the postmortem they can see a cause of death I will then be able to register the death and proceed with things.  

If they still can't determine a cause of death after the postmortem and need to do more analysis on samples, I believe they then issue an "interim death certificate" and I will then be able to proceed with the funeral arrangements, even though they haven't completed their analysis.  In this instance, I won't have to register the death and the coroner will launch an investigation and deal with it that way, which apparently isn't uncommon.  This is how it's been explained to me anyway, so I am hopeful that one way or another I will be able set a date for the funeral soon.

In terms of the results of the postmortem, I am expecting a phone call from the coroner tomorrow AM which will just explain the above and if I can register the death myself or if they will issue an "interim death certificate".  I have a meeting with the doctor next Tuesday to go over the report in layman's terms for me.  I have been warned that even after all this there is a chance the results may still be inconclusive.

Everyone has been very apologetic as usually a postmortem is done 1 or 2 days after the death, so this has dragged on a lot really.

Shades Marathon Training

Posted: Today at 15:07

Emmy, I still have to be careful due to this achilles so I only did 4 miles at 10min/miles on the flat.  I haven't yet gone further than 4 miles even though I'm itching to, but I need to take it steady.  I am hoping that by next week I'll be up to 5 or 6ish and if I am I will go along to the club for their social session. 

Around lunchtime when the postmortem was going on I just tried to sit quietly and think about Claire but I realised I couldn't sit still so instead found myself looking at photos and other things.  It dawned on me that I have got very little video of her especially with her talking and that began to bother me.  Claire didn't mind having her photo taken but didn't really like having her video taken for some reason - I'm not sure why to be honest.

I was going through her phone to see if there was anything on there and she had quite a few of her bump moving, but even on those she wasn't talking. I then turned her phone off and called it, but she didn't have a recorded message but it was an O2 automated one.  Not sure why this bothered me, but it did!  Anyway,  I've asked a few close friends/family on Facebook if they have anything with her talking but I suspect they haven't.  I do have a few small snippets, so that will have to do I think and I've backed them up all over the place just in case. 

Then, I washed and dried all the bedclothes and put the duvet cover back on.  There were many times that I came in to "help" Claire do that chore.  By "help" I mean take the duvet cover off of her and wrap her up in it, with her laughing.  This memory made me smile again

Shades Marathon Training

Posted: Today at 09:18

Shades/Emmy - I think strictly speaking milk/dairy isn't allowed in paleo as it wasn't consumed in the "caveman" times.  However I do still drink it on its own or in hot drinks.  

To be honest, the main thing I concentrated on first was reducing the bread down to the minimum and then looked at reducing rice and pasta.  I found reducing the bread relatively easy, although I thought I'd struggle as I realised I had some bread in about 75% of meals.  I did find getting rid of sweetened yogurts very hard.  Reducing the pasta and rice was okay, but meant more thought in meals, particularly as Claire still continued with her usual diet through the pregnancy and I cooked the majority of meals.  So I'm not a "full on" paleo person by any means and a lot of this goes out the window when I eat out!

I did see the clinical psychologist yesterday and it was okay, but to be totally honest I didn't get a huge amount out of it.  He confirmed that I shouldn't be trying to force anything and did say to take it one day at a time, so that was one thing I got out of it as I wasn't sure about that.  Also, putting some kind of structure/routine in place when I feel ready, but I have been doing that anyway.

He did say something that I hadn't really thought of specifically before and that is that Claire will currently be taking up a huge amount of "space" in my head, more so than when she was alive even.  I did know that I was thinking of her a lot, but hadn't thought about it in that way in terms of comparing it to when she was alive.  I was in there about an hour and we've left it open for me to contact him again if I want (i.e., we haven't set another appointment at the moment).  I'll see what I feel like after the postmortem and the funeral.

It's a pretty tough day today with the postmortem happening at lunch time.  I'm having a blitz on the house in terms of tidying/washing/cleaning and may have a go at the garden a bit as well (I'm typing this about the garden, but I expect this won't happen!), and then a short run.  I'm seeing a couple of friends this evening, and then I'm really hoping today or tomorrow I can get a date for the funeral agreed. Fingers crossed.

Shades Marathon Training

Posted: Today at 08:10

Post got cut off:

- Nuts – especially macadamias, walnuts and almonds but specifically excluding the non-nuts, peanuts and cashews which are high in carbohydrates.
- Fruits – only those which have a lower carbohydrate content like berries and apples.
- Water, tea and coffee (all unsweetened)!

(I should add that I have also not gone organic/free range, but this is mainly due to price).

Shades Marathon Training

Posted: Today at 08:09

Shades, dairy is allowed in paleo.  The things that are cut out are sugars and carbs.  Below is a copy and paste from  Like I mentioned, I personally am not following this to the letter by any means so count myself as "semi paleo", but do generally feel better for it.  For me, I do find it interesting that I have fairly easily maintained my weight even when I was doing little exercise.  In the past when I haven't exercised I very easily put weight on, which is exactly the predicament that Noakes describes.

Also, please note that there are people who strongly oppose this so maybe read up a bit about it if you're interested if you want a "balanced" view.  I say "balanced", but a lot of the comments from people on the Internet are far from balanced and at the end of the day what Noakes was saying rang true with me so I decided to give it a go. 

Very roughly, my meals are now:

Breakfast:  eggs, avocado and tomatoes, sometimes with bacon for a treat.  This is all fried in butter (apart from the avocado) and not oil.  This used to be cereal and/or toast.

Lunch: salad of tomatoes, cucumber, cheese, nuts, sweetcorn.  This used to be sandwiches, crisps and yogurt.

Evening meal: Chicken, sweet potatoes and veg, for example, although I do still eat white potatoes as well which strictly speaking should be removed.  This used to be mainly pasta and rice based meals, with more often than not some kind of bread on the side.  

Snacks: fruit, and this has always been the case although I've mixed it up a bit.  I still eat bananas too, which strictly speaking should be reduced.  I've always had plenty of water and never drank coke anyway.

From that website I mentioned:

Foods that Tim Noakes has removed from his diet

- Sugar (Must be completely removed from your diet) 
- All sugary drinks including cola drinks and sweetened fruit juices Bread
- Rice
- Pasta
- Potatoes
- Porridge
- Breakfast cereals
- Some high energy fruits like bananas
- All confectionary – cakes and sweets
- Desserts containing sugar and carbohydrates
- Artificial sweetners and products containing these products (like “diet” colas)
- Vegetable oils containing high concentrations of omega 6 fatty acids

He also warns everyone to be very wary of so-called “low-fat” “healthy” options, yoghurt especially, since these are laden with sugar and so are less healthy than are the full fat options.


Tim Noakes restricts his food choices to the following food and beverage groups: 

- Eggs – from free range hens
- Fish – an excellent source of omega 3 fatty acids
- Meat – not processed and preferably from sources that are organically raised eating grass. This group includes biltong, preferably game or ostrich.
- Dairy Produce – milk, cheese and yoghurt – all full cream and from organically fed cows.
- Vegetables – mainly leafy, low carbohydrate sources like lettuce but also including broccoli, tomatoes, mushrooms, onions, avocado and many others. The choice is based on their nutrient value and their low carbohydrate content.
- Nuts – especially macadamias, walnuts a

Shades Marathon Training

Posted: Yesterday at 11:01

Emmy, the two Tim Noakes interviews are among my favourites on MarathonTALK.  I know the approach has its doubters (putting it mildly) but it rings true with me somehow.  Where it stemmed from with me was that gels just taste artificial to me, and I got to thinking there must be more natural ways to fuel.  Then I started on paleo, but did it gradually.  This approach is different to what Noakes suggests as he recommends going for it all in one go, but I found doing it in stages was easier and I could get rid of certain foods over a longer period.  I'm not 100% paleo and never will be, and do have lapses every now and again but overall I feel I eat far healthier now than I did 12 months ago.  Eating out is very hard on a paleo diet, and I enjoy eating out....!

When Noakes talks about carbs being an addiction on a par with cigarettes, hard drugs and alcohol I can see what he is getting at.  He describes how people who are addicted to carbs just constantly seek them out, and that summed me up perfectly.  I used to basically demolish sandwiches, cereals, pasta dishes, whatever.  Claire would often only have just started her meal and I'd have finished mine.  At the time I didn't consider myself addicted to carbs, but maybe I was and it is Noakes that put that thought in my mind.  Don't know.

SK, the last two nights I have stayed at my house.  It hasn't been too bad, although mornings are the toughest.  At the moment I have basically got 1 or 2 things that I am doing each day (listed on my trusted Excel spreadsheet, naturally!) and those things are keeping me going at the moment.

I keep going back to this speech that is being read out on my behalf at there funeral, and tweaking it.  I'm wary of making it worse but I think it's about right now so will leave it for a day or two and come back to it later in the week.  I'll give it a final read through (with my hands firmly away from the keyboard to avoid further tweaking!!) and if I'm happy send it to my brother in law as he'll be reading it out.

Regarding work, I have been given a contact for an office building in nearby Chelston in Torquay so I am going to see if I can "hot desk" there (basically come and go as I need, but not have an "official" desk there).  That would suit me as it's only 4 miles from my house. I have this morning emailed the contact so I'll see what he says.  As it happens, his team use the software that I am involved with and I have also been told that there are a couple of runners in the building too.

Shades Marathon Training

Posted: 29/09/2014 at 21:06

Iain - well done on the weight loss.  That's really good.  I am on a "semi caveman diet" myself and what I noticed is that I maintained my weight even though I am doing a lot less exercise than I was.  I binned cereal, bread and pasta but kept potatoes.  If you're interested check out the two Tim Noakes interviews on MarathonTALK and the below YouTube link is a bit about it as well.  I find him quite engaging and as an author he has basically said that the section in his book (The Lore Of Running) about diet should be disregarded as he now thinks he was wrong, which I think is brave bearing in mind he's a professional.

One of my long term aims is to do a marathon with no gels.  I was over reliant on them, but my last 3 half marathons (which included 2 PBs) I've done with no gels and that was a bit change for me.  I know a marathon is a different kettle of fish, but I think it's possible for me.

Shades Marathon Training

Posted: 29/09/2014 at 14:52

Shades, DD reckons he's shifted a few pounds and that is what has helped.  He wasn't particularly fat anyway was he, but he's been doing the "caveman diet" and he said that has helped and he feels healthier as well.

Shades Marathon Training

Posted: 29/09/2014 at 12:33

Meeting my Dad and his partner for a bite to eat this lunchtime, which will be nice.

A quick bit of info about the Barsntaple Half and Marathon.  Our chairman has pointed out that there were 188 people who finished the marathon compared to 182 who finished the Half....

Shades Marathon Training

Posted: 29/09/2014 at 11:28

Emmy, not sure about the running yet, although I'll persevere with the walking.  I have been getting into cycling recently but somehow that doesn't appeal at the moment.  I think because you have to have your wits about you on the roads when cycling, whereby running I tend to kind of zone out a bit.

I did do a fair bit of walking about yesterday by myself (17 miles), which was probably foolish but I just felt I wanted to do it and didn't really think about it.  I walked from my Dad's in Brixham to my house which is 12.5 miles, and then I walked in and out of town to see the Trotters in the evening which is 2.5 miles each way.

Yes, I'm definitely going into tomorrow with an open mind.  I do hope he can help somehow.  I am worried that I am not really processing it all and that "something" will hit me in a few weeks/months.  This morning for example I have been phoning people up relating to Claire's car, which has some finance left on it.  I want to keep the car and sell mine, and there's "stuff" that needs to be done for that to happen and I was just worried about penalties once Claire's bank account is frozen.  I was going through all this in a matter of fact way to the person on the phone, and it's only when I put the phone down that it really registered the conversation I just had.  Basically, I was calling someone up to put Claire's car into my name so that I can settle the outstanding finance as she can no longer do it as she's not here.  It's surreal.

Then, I transferred a load of photos to my photo library on my Mac, only this time the album I created was for Jay.  The act of transferring pictures I've done many times, but the content is different this time as it has Jay in them and also Claire holding him and it only hit me after I transferred them to my Mac.  I am struggling to get my head around it all and it's small things like this that are doing my head in at the moment.

You see, I don't know if I should be actively trying to think about things to get it all out in the open, or if I should lock things a way to deal with later, or if I should just take it as it comes.  The "take it as it comes" approach seems the best, but then I do worry about the future.  It's all very strange.

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