Wednesday, 03 January 2018 00:26

64 days until my bits are frozen off!! (blog #24)

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Hi Everyone, a happy New Year to you all.

Breathe and smile, today was the monthly blood results day and they have gone back to the joint best ever of 0.11, always great to hear (for me anyway!) and means that I have another month.  I was thinking about an analogy for how I feel in life, I guess it’s a bit like if I was a footballer whose team is 3-0 down and are in the 93rd minute .Yes the game is probably lost but I don’t know how many more minutes the ref will give us, I was only expecting 2 and have had 3 already, the ref could blow the whistle at any time but I will keep on trying my hardest because even losing 3-1 will be better than 3-0 as the buzz of getting that goal will make me feel good at the time and hopefully encourage the team to keep trying in the next match as they may win that one even if I am no longer in the team. Hope that makes sense?

Kevin Webber has 64 days before his bits may be frozen!

The next bit of good news is that I am back training full on for the last month. It is mainly fast walking as that is what the Yukon 6633 ultra is, a long fast walk of 350 miles in the cold, I am sure that others may be able to run some of it but that’s not my plan, I just want to start and do my best.

It has been a busy month with loads going on notwithstanding year end festivities. I was honoured to represent Prostate Cancer UK at the annual National Football League lunch at The House of Lords just before Xmas, as a football fan it was so reassuring to hear the passion and desire to make the game as good as it can be by all for players, supporters and owners alike.

So its now two months before I go to the Arctic, the race and preparation has become all consuming. Firstly there is the training, average 6 hours a day (increasing to 10+)for 6 days a week. I was pretty happy that it is going to be cold and uncomfortable but then I attended a training weekend in the Brecon run by Likeys outdoor adventure store . I arrived feeling cautious but hopeful and left absolutely petrified and so unprepared. Unlike all the other races I have done before where the biggest reason for drop outs are blisters this one is frostbite, frostbite and then frostbite (you get where I am coming from). They discussed frostbite in places where no man wants frostbite plus thighs, chest, nose and chin. Then went on to chafing where a picture passed around looked more like a clowns massive painted lips rather than a place where the sun should never shine!

I have taken the decision to try (I say try as chemotherapy still has had a negative effect) to grow a beard as that may help keep my face a bit warmer so if you see me looking scraggy, apologies but rest assured it will be going as soon as I get back as I don’t want a beard in the Sahara! That said, they then told of face masks freezing to peoples faces when its -50c and when pulled off having the same effect as someone waxing their legs , ouch!

If that was not enough they finished me off by making us aware of aggressive moose, watching arctic foxes, bears coming out of hibernation and polar bears venturing further south , somehow I don’t think I will be sleeping easy any night in my sleeping bag in the snow on my own every night!

I have now bought most of my kit (having taken out a small mortgage!) and my sledge arrives next week so looking forward to have a play with that however to give me a better chance of finishing, I have decided I need to lose a bit of weight so being 93kilos at the year end want to be 85kilos by the time I go (this will also help in the Sahara a month later) so I have given up alcohol, gone pretty much vegan and given up any refined sugar, lucky I like fruit, veg and nuts!

Thank you to so many of you who have already supported my fundraising aims, all the money goes to Prostate Cancer UK as I have paid all my costs for every event with a bit of help from Likeys
https://www.likeys.com/

for the 6633 Arctic ultra (thank you Martin and Stuart). If you would like to and are able to help stop prostate cancer being a killer by supporting me please visit
https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/kevin-webber6

thank you.

As those of you will know who I have bored over the last couple of years with my blogs, I am a reluctant PR person for Prostate Cancer UK however I feel that I can never turn down an opportunity to raise awareness for them so following a recent meeting, the Sunday Mirror have amazingly agreed to give me a weekly column to write about my story each week so those who take that paper will have to suffer me weekly (sorry), that starts this Sunday 7th Jan with a double length article to set the scene. I am also trying to get on mainstream TV before I go to the arctic as I hope there is an inspiring story to tell about chasing dreams, never giving up and raising awareness for my favourite charity. That leads me nicely onto today as I have spent the day with a good friend of mine Nick Butter. I met Nick on the Marathon Des Sables in 2016 as we were in the same tent. Nick is a far better runner than I and he set out many adventure running plans that he had for the next 20 years (he is also much younger than me!). I made a serious but throwaway comment about not waiting for a rubbish diagnosis to chase his dreams and that (unbeknown to me) stuck with him. So here we are 20 months on and he has given up his (very good and very well paid) job and departs on Saturday to run 196 marathons, that is one in every one of the 196 countries in the world (yes including North Korea, Yemen, Iraq, Afghanistan and even the USA!). This feat has never been done before, a world first. Not only that but he is aiming to raise £250,000 for Prostate Cancer UK in the process, all because of that conversation in a tent in the Sahara in April 2016. Have a look if you have the time and see how you can follow him,

https://www.nickbutter.com/runningtheworld196

I am so humbled about what he is doing to effectively help my kids never have to worry about this disease. I do hope that I can inspire more people just like Nick and many colleagues and friends already to do things sooner rather than later in their life and if possible also raise funds for charity.

Part of today were various filmed interviews with Sky and ITV, whilst I am only a bit part player in the story, Nick wanted to include me so if you live in the West Country then on Thursday during the 6-00 news programme I may have a cameo in Nicks big story if you get a chance to watch.

The above further leads onto my own film making/media profile where my friend Richard has been working hard at getting a website, new facebook page, song (I am not singing you will be pleased to know), video and documentary progressed, hopefully it will all be ready for February.

So that’s it for another month, as ever I must mention RBS my employer for being so supportive and my wife Sarah, both of whom have enabled me to keep my sanity and positivity in which would otherwise have been a spiral of negativity and depression in my life.

This time I will leave you with a poem that an amazing mindfulness and sports massage guy, Steve Harding, shared with me recently, written in 1914 by Fernando Pessoa, if ever you are worried about what may happen in your life read this and hopefully you will change your focus to the now, I know I have:-

Beyond the bend in the road
There may be a well, and there may be a castle,
And there may be just more road.
I don’t know and don’t ask.
As long as I’m on the road that’s before the bend
I look only at the road before the bend,
Because the road before the bend is all I can see.
It would do me no good to look anywhere else
Or at what I can’t see.
Let’s pay attention only to where we are.
There’s only enough beauty in being here and not somewhere else.
If there are people beyond the bend in the road,
Let them worry about what’s beyond the bend in the road.
That, for them, is the road.
If we’re to arrive there, when we arrive there we’ll know.
For now we know only that we’re not there.
Here there’s just the road before the bend, and before the bend
There’s the road without any bend.


Thanks for reading, smile lots today please and feel free to share any of this email with anyone who may find it interesting (if such a person exists ha ha).


Kev


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