A bit of a nuisance to discover that I am now suffering from medial epicondylitis or epicondylopathy. I must admit I was quite shocked and worried because these sound frightening. “I’m sorry to tell you you have medial epicondylitis or epicondylopathy,” says the grim-faced GP. “How long have I got?” “As long as it takes you to get to the freezer and wrap your elbow with a bag of frozen peas?” “Not chemo or radiotherapy, then?” “No, it’s only tennis elbow.” “Only? It’s killing me.”
So, that’s me, then. Tennis elbow and I haven’t played tennis in over 30 years. But I have played golf and this wretched condition is also known as ‘golfer’s elbow’. Given that I am in the middle of some golf lessons to try and resurrect my mid life crisis (there are far worse things to do during such a crisis), this is not helpful.
My elbow was really hurting yesterday, so there was only one thing for it: I went to the local driving range to hit some balls. Given the pain I was in, the best thing to do would have been to rest the offending body part so I shouldn’t have gone at all. But, a few paracetamols later, there I am, clubs in hand at said driving range queueing up to get some balls. I’d decided to buy 50 balls to mishit to all sides of the driving range, but by the time I reached the front of the line a little voice inside my head said “100 balls, please.”
In truth, the paracetamols don’t even touch the pain, so I suppose I should have eased up, hit a few chip shots and left it at that. But I am every bit as immature and stupid as I was way back when and obviously I’d brought my driver with me. So I went for it, relearning the skills my long-suffering coach had taught me, and I was hitting balls straighter and harder than ever. I could feel my elbow wasn’t feeling great, but I figured any exercise was better than none. It was only when I got in the car to drive home and had to engage the gear stick that I knew this had not been the wisest thing to have done!
Today, it’s even worse, and it was a struggle to load the washing machine, never mind cutting the grass which is my next chore. But they have to be done. I cannot keep wearing my underpants inside out in order to get maximum use out of them over two days. (Just kidding.)
I’m going to play a round (ooh er) next week and I have another lesson and both are going ahead. My elbow is absolutely killing me but if I don’t do something about my current levels of health and fitness, they will probably literally kill me for real.
There is little to be said about growing old, apart from the fact it’s better than the alternative.