I’ve been injecting Avonex every week now for about six years. Time flies when you’re having fun, right? Normally, I tolerate the side-effects really well. Some people are affected really badly by headaches, fatigue and flu-like symptoms; some of them so badly that they prefer to stop taking the drug altogether rather than put up with the side-effects every week. I’m lucky: as long as I remember to take a couple of paracetamol and some ibuprofen before starting and inject just before I go to bed, I usually get away pretty lightly. I don’t get away scott free, mind. I sometimes wake up the next morning with general sense of fatigue, as though I’m being gently pushed back into the mattress, and I find it harder than normal to get up, and sometimes I feel as though my brain is a little slower than normal for the first few hours of the day…. But basically, I’m fine and it’s something I’m prepared to put up with to keep taking a drug that may be reducing the number and severity of my relapses. So far, so good, anyway.
As my marathon training peaks, I’ve obviously been really pushing myself physically. On the whole, my body has tolerated this well. I do get tired as a result of all the running I’m doing, but it’s usually good old-fashioned muscle pain and not the entirely more weasley MS fatigue. I ran to work yesterday. It’s around 3.6 miles there and back, and because I’m accumulating miles rather than trying to set any speed records, I generally use this as a fairly easy way of racking up miles in a time-efficient way. Yesterday though, my run home was a real slog from start to finish and I was physically exhausted. I had a massage and a fairly relaxing evening, but I also needed to do my weekly injection.
When I woke up this morning, I felt terrible. I don’t know if this was because my body was simply exhausted or if it was anything to do with the injection (or a combination of both), but I felt fatigued, heavy-muscled, head-achey and generally like crap. I know it sounds counter-intuitive, but for me at least, getting up and doing some exercise is often the first step to feeling a little bit better, and my cycle to work this morning definitely helped. As did the 6 cup cafetiere of coffee that I drank….. I have to tell you though, I’m not really looking forward to the 11 mile run I’m supposed to be doing this evening.
Actually, that’s a lie. I **am** looking forward to it because I absolutely loathe feeling as though I have physical limits or that my condition might be able to dictate what I can and can’t do. Fuck you, MS. I am going out for a 11 mile run tonight and I’m not going to let you stop me.