2020, Review, Uncategorized, Walk All Over Cancer 10,000 Steps

Book Review: What Doesn’t Kill You By Rachel Haynes

Blurb: Rachel Haynes survived bowel cancer, not once, but twice. This is her story about facing treatment, the joy of remission, followed by the heartbreak of relapse and finally unexpectedly a cure. Rachel reflects on the messy psychological legacy of survival in all its raw highs and lows. And of her overwhelming urge to finally make sense of a life she never thought she would see. With taboo-breaking humour and honesty, she vividly describes her experience of cancer, the impact it has on her loved ones alongside a tender description of how life has brought her full circle back to love. It is a rallying call to wake up to what s important in life and to never give up hope. A quest to get to the answer of what to do when you have a second chance at life. Rachel Haynes faced a 7% chance of survival when she was diagnosed with advanced bowel cancer at the age of 45. All profits from the book will be donated to Bowel Cancer UK. What lies beneath survival is the realisation that the end of treatment is not the end of the story.

Review: Firstly, I want to apologise for how long it’s taken me to not only review but finish reading this book. It should have been a quick read but there is so much to this book that I’m glad I didn’t read it quickly.

Sadly I’ve seen first hand what cancer does to families and it’s not pretty in the slightest. I was there until the very end with my Nan I’m glad we could be there for her but it was one of the hardest most gut wrenching times of my life. I’ve lost a friend and another family member also as well as seeing colleagues lose love ones to this disease. For those of you new to my blog I worked for Cancer Research UK for 3 and a half years before opting for a change and wow some of the stories I’ve listened to over that time.

Rachel is a survivor! She explains her story with grace and the odd ounce of humour. It’s such a tough subject and I found myself often thinking back on my Nan and friends prognosis and I could relate to how her family members were feeling. This book is a frank and honest account from a survivor who battled this disease not once but twice. My Nan fought it the first time but she wasn’t as lucky as Rachel the second time.

I really liked the fact Rachel has clearly thought about what she wanted to say in this book. She delves into the nitty gritty and the after the cancer…a truly informative read on everything to do with cancer and also focusing on those around you. I can’t imagine how it was explaining to her kids but throughout she was extremely honest. I also liked that she took us right up to date with where she is now.

I also commend Rachel on wanting to share her story for good. There are so many forms of cancer and sadly Bowel Cancer is one of the worst. We shouldn’t shy away from being informed.

Uncategorized, Walk All Over Cancer 10,000 Steps

10,000 steps a day for Cancer Research UK

Back in May I was riffling through Facebook and up came an advert for Cancer Research Walk All Over Cancer with 10,000 steps. I sat reading through the ad and before I knew it I had signed myself up. From July 1st until July 31st I would walk at least 10,000 steps every single day, some days this is easy but other days this is not. Back when I signed up I thought in my head July it will be warm so I can get fitter and a tan at the same time, well that sure as hell hasn’t happened today but there is still time.

I challenged myself last year with the twist on the Dryathlon and I out done myself so I thought what the hell. I get to support a charity that means the world to me. (If you didn’t already know I now work full-time for Cancer Research UK, it is a much more demanding job than that of my previous job but I love the challenge of every single very different day). Plus I am helping myself stay fit, I have walked to and from work a fair bit on and off since I moved here but making sure I do it all month to rack up them steps will be a challenge indeed.

Day one

This morning I woke to my lovely alarm (sarcasm) at 7am and I wasn’t feeling great, I had a sore throat and a few aches and pains but on I went. As I was getting ready for work I could see the clouds were turning grey, but that wasn’t going to spoil day one. I had my phone fully charged ready to have Pacer GPS switched on and I grabbed my (winter coat) yup it is July 1st but you wouldn’t have guessed it by the weather and on I went. It was a little damp in the air but it wasn’t raining when I left my house but shortly after I left the coat was on. (Annoyingly as it wasn’t cold) so on I started with my walk, the rain started to come but it was quite light to start with and then it started to come down a lot harder and faster, funnily enough like fate there were no buses passing me. I just kept thinking you will not beat me, I will not cave and before I knew it I had made it to work, with a rather damp coat and soggy feet but I had already smashed almost 6,000 steps I was happy with my progress.

At Cancer Research where I work we are on two levels, so throughout the day I am up and down so by 3pm ish I had smashed my 10,000 steps but I kept my phone with me until I had reached home, as I wanted to mark the day from when I left home until when I returned home. What a day, we had grey skies and rain, sunshine, a rainstorm and then sunshine again. Thankfully my journey home was much brighter than my journey into work.

So that pretty much sums up day one if you would like to dig deep and sponsor me you can do so here! I appreciate anything and everything that you can spare…I should also be taking part in two Race For Life’s so watch this space.

until next time 🙂