In 2015 I was a fit 52 year old who had just started to feel his age. I had cycled with toeclips since 1975 and have been a member of three clubs on and off since then. I have two kids, 14 and 10 at the time, and tended to cycle solo some nights and at 7:00 a.m. on the Clubs Saturday morning Sparrowfarts (getting up at the fart of a sparrow).
My job had changed slightly in 2014; I was spending a little more time away from the family at work (too many Beefeater restaurant meals and fried breakfasts) and did not have enough staff and resource to cover work demands. I was struggling to keep up and having to work long stressful hours. I have always liked a pint of real ale, a glass of red or a malt, and was overdoing it a little in self-medication.
Towards the autumn in 2015, I started to notice I was losing speed on solo runs and struggling to keep up on hilly group rides. I put this down to cycling less and eating and drinking more.
This blog explains how I discovered my Atrial Fibrillation (AF) and the journey I took through treatment. The blog was started in September 2016, so earlier dated entries are based on dairy events and cycling logs. I was given access to my medical records on September 26 that year, so all references to test results earlier than this were amended.
Before (and after) diagnosis, I struggled to find relevant information on AF; I started this blog in the hope that it could help other newly diagnosed athletes. I have also found this blog useful to look back on myself. Sometimes I have mis-remembered my situation and this blog has allowed me to look back on an an accurate record.
It is now more than three years old and I have realised that there are a lot of pages for someone new to wade through, so below are some of the key sections.
April 2015 First time I felt affected
July 2016 Cardiologist
October 2016 Cardioversion and look back on Garmin heart traces
November 2016 Treatment Plan; flecainide and ablation
January 2017 Alternative treatment plan; hybrid ablation
April 2017 Epicardial ablation in detail
July 2017 Three month review and thoughts on amiodarone
October 2017 Catheter ablation
November 2017 Six week review and off drugs
April 2018 Some wobbly heartbeats
May 2018 More wobbly heartbeats and six (seven) monthly review
June 2018 Frightening ECG
September 2018 Back to club riding and normal HR
November 2018 Six monthly review
April 2019 Second anniversary
November 2019 Informal report on clinical trial from research nurse