Face down, eyes up

At the weekend I met someone who I connected with in a way which made me fairly certain that either a) I want to sleep with them or b) I’m going to sleep with them. I am aware that the latter makes me sound like I’m thinking illegal thoughts, but it’s a concept I’m still getting my head round, and I realise I could be confusing the two through a haze of lust and my overactive imagination.

I’m generally quite bad at judging how things are going to work out with another person where sex is concerned, and the first time I was exposed to such a level of certainty was when B was sleeping with a mutual friend who had told him that she knew she was going to sleep with him the first night they met. I couldn’t relate to that at all, but after the weekend’s encounter I seem to have a better appreciation for it and I spent most of Sunday thinking about this and having a couple of afternoon powernaps lulling myself to sleep with the aid of some filthy daydreams.

The next few months shall be interesting.


Add comment June 25, 2009 rooroo

Save the ex-embryo

Since I stopped working at El Clinico Aborto some time ago, I put the issue of abortion to the back of my mind and became quite meh about the subject. When I was doing my GP placement, I occasionally saw pregnant patients and discussed their antenatal care. All the pregnancies I saw had been wanted, so it was a far cry from having to discuss abortion options.

A few days ago during the neonatal ward round, while I was peering down at the tiny babies born too soon, my mind wandered back to the subject of late-term abortion and where my personal ‘cut-off’ would be for performing them. Surgical late-term abortion is pretty unpleasant as a procedure and there are not many people willing to do them. Obstetrics, seeing new parents holding their babies and palpating heavily pregnant abdomens helped me to push it all to the back of my mind. Dr Tiller’s death has been quite the wake up call.

I never feared for my personal safety or my life when I worked there. I sometimes looked over my shoulder to see if anyone was following me, but generally my walk to the station was filled with thoughts like what I was going to have for supper and playing with the shuffle on my ipod.

I am not the sort of person who would continue working in a place if it meant I had to wear a bulletproof vest to work. Nor I am the sort who would continue working if I had been previously shot. Dr Tiller helped people when no one else would. What really gets me is that there are large numbers of people (publicly and privately) who are rejoicing at the news of his death. I wonder if they would go to work under similar circumstances.

Add comment June 1, 2009 rooroo

Momentary lapse

It’s that awful time again; exams have taken over my life and once again the third space is the library. The sun coming in through the basement windows has been torture. Back soon.

Add comment April 4, 2009 rooroo

The aftermath

Well, I never expected a breakfast TV show to break into new frontiers when it comes to resistance training and the enormous benefits that comes with. The British media are currently worshipping at the alter of Tracy ‘No woman should ever lift more than 3lbs!’ Anderson and obviously a trainer likes to use their clients as an advertisement – cue a shot of Gwenyth and Madonna (by the way, this is the same Madonna that many people refer to in the sentence, “But I can’t lift more than a pencil, I’ll end up looking like Madonna!”)

“Teeny arms! Teeny arms!” Tracy yelped a couple of times. Not only do people want toned arms it seems, but also cachexia.

The resistance in the exercises came in the form of air. Quite a few flicking motions, my personal favourite came in the form where you take the position as if you’ve got a very fat person standing behind you, and you have to bring your arms back and flick your wrists as if you’re trying to slap their arse. Don’t take my word for it, watch and learn.

Then of course Lorraine and some random fashionista guy commented on the feature, and made the very important point that you obviously don’t want to become too muscular just nice and toned. Whatever the hell that means. I’m surprised Lorraine didn’t say, “Too muscular like Madonna,” but that would be mean-spirited (not to mention confusing) given who her personal trainer is.

Joke of it is, does anyone really think Michelle Obama got arms like that from uber high reps and no kind of weight on the end? I’ll bet she can bench press her husband, and I’d happily pay to see that.

Add comment March 23, 2009 rooroo

“If this is too difficult, use pencils for resistance. Or air!”

On Lorraine Kelly’s show, they’re about to show a person how they can tone up their arms and banish bingo wings a la Michelle Obama. I’m not optimistic, watch this space.

1 comment March 23, 2009 rooroo

It can’t only be Monday

Incorporating barbell squats and deadlifts back into my workout has sent my appetite soaring. It’s not helped by the fact that I’m approaching my pre-menstrual state where carbohydrates to me = what butter is to James Martin. I thought it would be a good opportunity to venture into a copy of Gourmet Nutrition desserts I was sent. I’m liking the idea of chocolate ricotta, 32g of protein, nom nom.


A medic friend of mine informed me that women shouldn’t do full push ups, and should be on their knees instead. Reason? It causes the uterus to stretch. That is not a joke. This person is definitely training to be a doctor.

Things that don’t cause the uterus to stretch: push ups

Things that do: babies


A friend of mine recommended a sex shop run by and for women. She also mentioned that they offer you a cup of tea when you visit. I’m intrigued – what kind of tea are we talking about?

3 comments March 16, 2009 rooroo


Today I witnessed a registrar tear strips off a colleague of mine. Scratching the surface, he wanted to do some surgery which was done by another, and was pissed about it. Colleague was in the wrong place at the wrong time. I often feel like medical students are easy targets. It’s not like we’re in the same place for very long, so it doesn’t matter if we complain and placements are short enough to think it’s fine to just grin and bear it. We all have bad days now and then, but it’s hard to be at the brunt of someone else’s mood when you already feel like you’re in the way and would like to feel a little more useful.

I wish I had been braver and said something. I’m not sure what or what the hell it would have achieved, but I hold my own more at the gym. Perhaps that’s because I feel like the gym is my territory and I have a lot of confidence about it. I still feel like an outsider in medicine. Not so much in obstetrics, but certainly general medicine and surgery.

There’s no safety word in the hospital. I wish there was.

Add comment March 11, 2009 rooroo

The black whole

Recently, my mood has taken a bit of a battering, to the extent that I am weeping at adverts and have to hold back tears during Saturday Kitchen. My mum is going through the same thing, except that she’s menopausal and after peeing on numerous sticks, I can confirm that I have no hormonal excuse.

I’m hearing, “Go and see your doctor,” from all directions. I don’t actively encourage self-diagnosis among medics, but I can say with some confidence that I am not depressed. Playing the devil’s advocate, even if I was mildly depressed, it’s not something I feel is going to be helped with a 7 minute consultation (despite the fact that I find little chats therapeutic). I’m aware that whatever I’m going through is self-limiting so I guess it’s just a matter of riding it out through the mist.

As of tomorrow, my 7 day studying week is back, oh joy. I’m not sure how that’s going to effect what’s going on above. The concept of March is going to be abstract as intensive working like this kills any memory of well, everything. Not a bad month considering seasonal produce isn’t at its most inspiring.


The hoarder in me bought a bottle of sparking rose which apparently has subtle hues of strawberry in it, to be enjoyed with strawberry type desserts. I know strawberries aren’t in season right now, but I purchased it in anticipation.

Maybe I do need to see a doctor.

Add comment March 1, 2009 rooroo

Resistance, ur doing it… already

Scenario I’ve seen before many times. Woman goes to the student gym. She brings a couple of bags with her, containing items such as: gym kit, heavy textbooks, maybe a laptop, stationary, purse, ipod, phone, bag of make up, toiletries, towel et al. This bag could potentially weigh 10+kgs. She goes into the gym, does her routine on the cardio equiptment (as that’s the only way to lose weight – looking good is the only motivation) and then she goes onto her ‘toning’ exercises. She goes and picks up a pair of 1kg dumbbells, and starts doing tricep kickbacks and bicep curls.

After finishing up with her 1kg exercises, she goes back to the changing room, gets ready and hauls her 10+kg bag over her shoulder.

One thing that interests me is that there seems to be very little connection with resistance training and the functional training that many women do on a day to day basis without even realising. A relative of mine has beautifully defined arms, evolved after years of chasing around and picking up active toddlers and children. Despite this, after hearing about the lifting that I do, she warned me against getting, ‘too bulky’ from lifting heavy weights. There seems to be a stop-gap between a bridge that needs a bit of a fix. Maybe that could be one of the answers to get more people, especially women, engaged in the benefits of doing some weight training, regardless of the form that weight comes in.

Or it could be a disaster, and the poor unassuming toddler gets put on a restrictive diet and taken for baby liposuction, in the wake of being the biggest threat behind bulking up.

Recommended reading: Gubernatrix: The Toning Problem

Stumptuous: Things you should not lift

Add comment February 25, 2009 rooroo

Twisted gym pleasures

The feeling that you’re about to throw up.

The last time I vomited happened in the spring of 1991 (it was that memorable and traumatic) and ever since then I have a huge fear about seeing the contents of digestion in my lap. Bulgarian split squats in a superset with push ups left me with feeling that it was going to happen. The feeling disappeared as soon as I started stretching and I felt wonderful.

Producing more sweat than anyone else in the room

Rahh! Forget glowing, worship the perspiration, kiss my biceps, I am He-Man, see the sweat drip down my forehead! The guys looked on in admiration (NB: this may not have happened) and two yoga girls looked down their noses at me (NB: this definitely happened 😦  )

The inability to walk down steps due to leg shakiness

Nuff said.

Add comment February 24, 2009 rooroo

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