Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Optimising Training for Heart Transplant Blog: will it work?

Just been on a Social Media Training course today with work and have been taking lots of notes as to how to promote my Blog; not sure that was the intended outcome!

Key words are a big trick apparently and I need to say things like: heart transplant, organ donation, Papworth, Freeman, lovely Cardiologists, lovely donor family and other such things.  Sits back and waits for search engine to find me!     Less keen on other organ transplant key words like immunosuppressants, rejection, cardiac transplant vasculopathy...

Branding myself as a transplant recipient has not come easily as I don't think of myself in such narrow terms. Most of the people in my own community and previous jobs had little idea of my medical history until I decided to do my challenge.

"Keeping mum" has been a blessing - people don't make assumptions about your abilities or ask intrusive personal questions, but also a curse - people don't realise that sometimes you could do with a bit more support.   #lifelessons!

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My twenty twenty heart challenge is a mid life crisis, promotion of organ donation and fundraising gig all rolled into one. Please help me raise money for these two fantastic charities:

Papworth Hospital Charity please visit my justgiving page at http://www.justgiving.com/Angie4papworth 

The Freeman Heart and Lung Transplant Association, please visit my justgiving page at http://www.justgiving.com/Angie-Ridley

Click here to find out more about organ donation and join the register 
 #2020heart  challenge #lifegiven @angie_ridley

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Double Challenge Weekend - Road riding

Pete teaches me about cleats
Dressing the part was always going to be important for this challenge, so as soon as I went round to Bev's we "lycrad up" for the road, with me borrowing the proper gear.  Pulling the velcro straps tightly and an extra pair of socks kept the road shoes snugly on my feet, despite them being a couple of sizes too big.

Pete gave me some lessons in how to use cleats, a clip in pedal system that keeps your feet fastened to the pedal for more efficient cycling. Disengaging the cleats was the bit that proved trickiest, which I demonstrated beautifully with a sideways fall onto the road at my very first junction.  I kept my left foot free for the rest of the ride to avoid repeating this stopping technique.



We cycled along the Guided Bus Way to St Ives for a hot chocolate before our return journey, a round trip of about 14 miles.  Really love how much faster you can go on a road bike, although my cycling confidence is not that great so was braking on the fenland down "hill" stretches, much to Bev's amusement.

Took an extra tumble onto the busway track  on our return journey after  being spooked by a roadie shouting "left side" at me as he whizzed up behind me for an undertake.  Those lycras clearly fooled him as to my expertise ;-).

Exhausted at the end of our ride! Thrilled to have the opportunity to try road biking and  loved the experience. Thank you Bev!

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I'm doing this to help raise funds for these two fantastic charities and your support will make all the difference:

Please make a donation to the Papworth Hospital Charity by visiting my justgiving page at http://www.justgiving.com/Angie4papworth

Please make a donation to The Freeman Heart and Lung Transplant Association at my justgiving
page at http://www.justgiving.com/Angie-Ridley

Please do dig deep and make a donation, no matter how small, it all counts!

Click here to find out more about organ donation and join the register

#2020heartchallenge #lifegiven

Double Challenge Weekend - Hula Hooping

Adventures in hula hooping have involved weeks of enthusiastic but in the end futile girating with a small light weight plastic hoop, only for it to clatter to the ground each and every time after little more than a single spin. Good excercise but not the outcome I was hoping for.

Research of the school run mum and facebook friend variety indicated that as far as hooping goes, size really does matter. As a result of this advice, I bought myself a large (102 cm) red weighted (625g) hula hoop with instructional DVD.  True to my northern soul, the choice of a red hoop was dictated by price; it was 4p cheaper than the striped version!

The hoop arrived on Friday and was waiting for me in a gigantic cardboard package when I returned work.  Within moments of trying my new hoop, I was hooping successfully both ways and am addicted!!! Children equally thrilled with the large cardboard package.


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I'm doing this to help raise funds for these two fantastic charities and your support will make all the difference:

Please make a donation to the Papworth Hospital Charity by visiting my justgiving page at http://www.justgiving.com/Angie4papworth

Please make a donation to The Freeman Heart and Lung Transplant Association at my justgiving
page at http://www.justgiving.com/Angie-Ridley

Please do dig deep and make a donation, no matter how small, it all counts!

Click here to find out more about organ donation and join the register

#2020heartchallenge #lifegiven

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

All quiet on the blogging front...

Conscious that aside from a few tweets here and there, I've been a bit quiet on the blogging front for the last few weeks. Despite my virtual silence, planning and progress continue...

This weekend I'm hoping to do a wee bike ride with my friend Bev along the busway to St Ives on a propper grown up style racy road bike, complete with lycra, cleats (I had to google that) and a bit of a pro-cyclist attitude. 

Cycling isn't a new thing for me as learning to cycle was one of my first ambitions after my operation back in 1993 and one which my lovely Uncle Dave helped me to achieve. Since then however my cycles rides have all been on super chunky hybrid road / mountain bikes. I've certainly never dressed for the part, even when taking part in the British Transplant Games the year after my transplant, where I won a silver or bronze medal (I can not remember which) in a 5K cycle race, despite my bike not being exactly fit for purpose.
Still remember the bemused looks I received...

Looking forward to my cycle ride with Bev and the cake that we've planned for half time; wish more fundraising activities could involve cake!
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I'm doing this to help raise funds for these two fantastic charities and your support will make all the difference:

Please make a donation to the Papworth Hospital Charity by visiting my justgiving page at http://www.justgiving.com/Angie4papworth

Please make a donation to The Freeman Heart and Lung Transplant Association at my justgiving
page at http://www.justgiving.com/Angie-Ridley

Please do dig deep and make a donation, no matter how small, it all counts!

Click here to find out more about organ donation and join the register

#2020heartchallenge #lifegiven