Sunday’s Panic Attack…

I experienced one of my infamous panic attacks driving back home from the city on Sunday night.

After spending the day in the city, I met my partner who was also spending time in the city attending a workshop near the water to have a quick walk before driving home. As it was late afternoon, the wind began to pick up and I could feel myself begin to feel a shortness of breath.When I got in the car, I had some Ventolin but it didn’t seem to be easing the feelings I was having. We decided to head home and stopped to buy some water along the way. I have taken to carrying Gabatrol, a natural remedy, with me when I’m out and about as it generally works in about 10-15 mins to calm me down. As I can’t swallow tablets, I generally mix one with some water but as I had a bottle, I thought I would add two.

As I exited the Freeway to start the incline up the hill, I began to feel faint. In fact, it felt like my throat was constricting and my first thought in my panic was that I had too much Gaba. Completely irrational, mind you as you can safely take up to 8 a day but it was just my panic setting in. Once before when I had two instead of one, I felt sleepy and had a panic attack because I thought I was going to die, again very irrational.

I immediately called my partner and tried to explain what was happening while I was trying to calm myself down and control my breathing. She directed me to turn off at the next small town, so we could get out of the car and walk around.

Of course, within a minute of stopping the car and walking around, I was completely fine and after about 10 minutes we continued our drive home.

Panic attacks are scary, I hate them, I don’t understand why I keep having them. I understand that I’m being irrational and I need to calm down but at the moment I just can’t seem to prevent them happening.

I would love to hear how people deal with their panic attacks…


So How’s The Exercise Regime Going?

Well to be frank, it’s not…

Not really a great start to my grand plan of beginning to get fit.  I have had a couple of days of higher number of steps than my standard but that’s only because of things that I’ve need to do and not because of any conscious effort to get fit.

Last Thursday I needed to visit the library at the Society of Australian Genealogists as well as attend a lecture held at their other building so I walked the distance between the two, which was approximately a 15 minute walk.  On Sunday, my son marched for his school from Martin Place to the Opera House so again it was a day of a little more walking than necessary.

The weather seemed to clear up a little today, but I had a busy morning with work than a meeting so didn’t manage to get out.  I’m very good at making excuses, aren’t I? If it is not raining tomorrow, I’ll get out there and walk.  I’m hoping for the month of April to increase my walking to at least 5,000 steps a day, still only half of what the healthy average is so that will be my goal.

I would love to hear your views on ways to keep myself motivated to at least achieve that small goal…

The Only Way Is Up…

Well so the song goes…  And it’s definitely true for me.

Looking at my base figures, it’s quite a daunting experience but I have a couple of years to get myself at peak fitness.

Yesterday, I told you my starting weight was 58.4kgs. This morning, I jumped on the scales and was still at the same weight.  I fluctuate between 58.4 and 58.8.  To most people this probably seems like a perfectly healthy weight but for me, it’s not.  To put it into context I’m just on 151 centimetres tall and 16 years ago when my son was born, at full term I weighed 51.7kgs.  So to be nearly 7 kgs heavier than that is an issue for me.  Granted I was probably underweight prior to falling pregnant, to get back to 50kgs would make me feel a lot better about myself.

On my phone, I look at the Activity app and under ‘Steps’ I see my average for the month of March is just on 1,900 steps.  With a recommended 10,000 steps for the average Australian, I am embarrassingly below average. I’m assuming to complete my goal, I’m going to have to not only walk the average, but smash through it.  A daunting task but good to know where I’m starting from.

Living in the Blue Mountains, there are a lot of walks I can go on and I will eventually work my way up to bushwalking.  For now, I’m going to focus on walking most days.  I travel down to Sydney 3-4 times a week but the days I don’t, I will vow to go for a walk once a day, if not twice. It might not seem a lot, but I have to start somewhere and if I make promises of grandeur, I know I will burn out. You have to remember, even though I am very busy, I generally have a very stagnant lifestyle as is noticed by my step average.


Read about what was the inspiration behind my brand new blog.

Welcome to my brand new blog, Walking Through Fear.

It so happened yesterday, a day different to any other day, I suddenly got it into my head I would like to walk the Kokoda Track. Me… I’ve never been fit in my life and at the moment, I’m at my most embarrassingly heaviest at 58.4kgs with no sign of seeing the scales going south. In fact, I have stayed at this weight since I first began stepping on the dreaded scales at the beginning of the year.

Sure, I have made a half-arsed attempt to walk three times a week, admittedly only once in the past fortnight because we’ve had torrential rain. I’ve also noticed my anxiety has come back with a vengeance and I now take Ventolin for Asthma, something I probably always had but was never treated and has probably been exacerbated by my weight gain and overall stagnant lifestyle.

So as usual I digress but a lightbulb went off in my head and I thought I would like to walk Kokoda. Obviously, it would mean a massive change to my lifestyle and exercise regime to train for such an arduous trek but it came to me that it was something I really wanted to do and so today I began to read up on what it involves to walk the trek. The first thing is probably getting my weight back down to a comfortable area and then starting a training regime that will intensify as I get closer. But as I read the various travel sites about Kokoda, I came across a tour to walk the Sandakan Death March and all of a sudden, I realised that in fact I wanted to do this trek as well.

Why, you might ask?

Well, it actually starts a long time ago. When I was about 8 or 9, driving in the back seat of my Grandparents car, on the long road trip (back then 6-7 hours) to South West Rocks, listening to my Nana tell stories of her youth. One of her favourite stories to tell, and one of the most poignant was the one about her brother, Colin, a Prisoner of War who was captured by the Japanese during World War II. During coming weeks, I’ll talk more about him but for the point of this post I’ll keep going with the thoughts around Sandakan.

No, Colin didn’t go on the Death March but he did work on the Thai-Burma railway and I feel to honour his memory, I would like to do this walk. I now am a Professional Genealogist and one of the stories that I want to write is about Colin, his experiences during the war and what he endured upon his return. For a man I never knew, he is close to my heart. His story is the first I remember my Nana telling me and first ignited my passion for History and Genealogy,

So now, I have a different goal to what started as a calling yesterday. In 2019, I will walk the Sandakan Death March and then follow it up in 2020, while I’m at peak fitness (and something I’ve never been in my life!) I will walk Kokoda. If all goes according to plan, I would like to walk both during the Anzac Day celebrations and then follow it up in 2021 with a visit to the Western Front and commemorate my very much misunderstood Great Grandfather, William Latham.  All these stories, I will share with you through this blog as well as keep you up to date with the preparation, both physically and mentally.  As well it will keep me accountable to achieving my goals.  As I said, I’m at my absolute lowest physical condition I’ve ever been in my life so I will need to embark on a fitness regime and all other things that go along with achieving the goals of a lifetime as well as conquering my fears.

But now it’s off to finish my second glass of wine and hop into bed to watch catch up television…  the story of my relaxation, right there folks!