I'm writing an autobiography and want to map out the steps and writing process.  I am going to include things I think might add depth and realistic help to my book.  Not only will it be my story but it will have quoted articles that might help someone along the way.  For example, I've included an article I found written by Joshua Duvauchelle about Reasons for Poor Stamina.  Every one of these "reasons" I have experienced in my past.  My thought is.​What if I could have remedied these "reasons"?  Would it have made a difference in my life?  Would I have side stepped contracting MS? ​I'm not sure but someone else might benefit from this article so I'm going to include things like this in this section of my site.  Thanks for visiting and I hope our journey is informative and helpful.


      The smell of chlorine filled the air. The dingy yellow tiled cement deck was wet from all the swimmers getting in and out of the pool. It was slippery so we had to walk with a waddle and flat-footed to keep our balance. Our synchronized team had blue and gold vertical pinstriped one-piece swimsuits which made us look ridiculous when we scurried from one end of the deck to the other. Most of the synchronized swimmers on our team had a muscular or curvy build. Stripes did not flatter our figure. Even though I was quite slender this style of swimsuit resembled a 1950’s straight skirt cut and scoop neck.  I'm in the back row standing, 3rd from the left.


Difficult to make a serious competitive presence in the late 70’s.  Speed swim and dive suits were much better designed but the matching swim cap was a thin flimsy solid yellow rubber cap that was much too small to tolerate my thick, long hair. Instead, I wore a white extra large cap that kept my hair neatly tucked away and never budged when I swam or performed dives. There was only one official that made me wear the yellow rubber when our team competed. I despised him, he was unwilling to hear my circumstance regarding my hair. I wore the yellow rubber during the swim meet. It slipped off my head after swimming two lengths of a 25 length race. I gasped my way through a torturous race and lost. I was furious.

     I joined the high school’s swim team in my sophomore year and started diving in my junior year. Learning and mastering new stunts brought personal accomplishment to my otherwise mundane life. The dive team was a meager competitor at best but the swim team competed events with honor. Diving practice took time away from swimming laps, however, and I was losing my edge so I had to drop out of some events. My stamina slipped and I also gained some weight as my ravenous appetite continued and my metabolism did not. Maybe weight gain contributed to the struggle I had to keep my balance. It became increasingly difficult to maintain a straight walk off the end of the diving board. Every time it was my turn to go up for another dive, I mounted the diving board with uncertainty. I’d grab the polls and begin my assent waiting for the familiar dizziness to invade my head but hoping it wouldn’t arrive. I noticed the bottom of my left foot had pins and prickles sensations and I couldn't really feel the step underneath this foot. I had performed many dives in this sequential manner. I conquered the difficulties my body experienced and then I had to conquer the dive itself. One of the last dives I performed, I was too close to the board and felt my hair hit the diving board as I spun around to complete the dive. This single incident marked a definite change in the attention I would give the increasing presence of MS symptoms in my body.

     Although Multiple Sclerosis or MS wouldn’t actually be diagnosed for two more years, its symptoms started announcing themselves with regular frequency following this incident. An inward Pike position freestyle dive was one of my favorites. I thought it would be safe to do this dive because you had a place your feet securely at the end of the board and start from a motionless position. Arms at my side my focus was on complete balance and remaining still until the moment I bent my knees and the board bent underneath my weight and I sprang into action. Taking a deep breath I did just that but something went wrong my left leg didn't bend quite right. My head missed the board on my way down but I continued to circle and landed flat on my back. The air was sucked out of my lungs like a vacuum and I lay on top of the water in a dead man's float position gasping for breath. It took several seconds for me to gain composure and breathe in a rhythmic pattern. The rest of the swim team hardly noticed that I was struggling in the water. I felt abandoned and alone for several minutes. After I regained my composure I swam to the edge of the pool and hung my arm on the ledge to rest. I remember looking around. The team was talking amongst themselves and nobody had noticed what happened. When I discussed the incident with my diving coach, she said, “That often happens when you miss a dive.”

     I live two blocks from high school yet in the time it took me to walk home, my long, brown hair was frozen solid. I could hear the frozen locks clink when they hit each other with my natural sway as I walked. I frequently forgot a hat so I spent an hour thawing my hair after I returned home from dive practice.



Reasons for Having Poor Stamina by Joshua Duvauchelle, Demand Media

Joshua Duvauchelle is a certified personal trainer and health journalist, relationships expert and gardening specialist. His articles and advice have appeared in dozens of magazines, including exercise workouts in Shape, relationship guides for Alive and lifestyle tips for Lifehacker. In his spare time, he enjoys yoga and urban patio gardening.

     Stamina is important for everyone from athletes to office workers; it helps you to get through your day's activities without experiencing fatigue and exhaustion. There are several major reasons you may be experiencing poor stamina; identifying these possible factors in your lifestyle can help you address any problems and experience renewed vigor and energy — no coffee required! Dehydration Dehydration is a direct cause of fatigue and poor stamina. It's especially critical for athletes who may lose a lot of water through perspiration, and office personnel who may limit their daily intake of liquids to diuretics such as coffee. The effects of dehydration are immediate, kicking in once you lose just 1 percent of your body weight in liquids. Dehydration creates poor stamina in numerous ways. For example, it reduces your body's ability to stay cool, and increased body temperature leads to increased heart rate and faster depletion of glycogen, which your body needs for energy. Poor Nutrition Food forms the basic foundation of any healthy lifestyle, and if you're not eating right your body will likely tell you in the form of fatigue, very low exhaustion thresholds and an overall feeling of sluggishness. For example, an unbalanced diet that's low in iron has a direct link to poor stamina. Aim for a balanced, healthy food intake and especially pay attention to carbohydrate and protein intake. For optimal energy, especially for physically active individuals, carbohydrates should comprise approximately 65 percent of the daily caloric intake. Meanwhile, most active individuals need 0.5 grams of protein per pound of body weight per day, although bodybuilders and similar high-intensity athletes may need more protein for optimal stamina. Poor Sleep Sleep gives the body time to recharge and replenish its physical and mental energy reserves, and poor stamina and low energy levels are often a sign of not getting enough sleep. For athletes and similar active individuals, it's also during the rest phase that muscles repair, lactic acid — a primary factor in muscle fatigue and soreness — gets processed and released, and muscles regain their energy stores. Most adults need 7.5 to 8.5 hours of sleep every 24 hours for optimal stamina and health. Stress The modern world is full of nonstop stimuli and stresses, ranging from work demands to the needs of family. And stress has a direct impact on stamina and energy levels. One reason for this is that constant stress causes the body's levels of cortisol to rise, which in turn reduces the body's ability to metabolize carbohydrates and fats, and that can result in fatigue and exhaustion during physical activity. Chronic stress also exhausts the body's adrenal system, which also plays a part in stamina. Methods for reducing stress include deep breathing, exercise such as cardio or yoga, and creating boundaries. For example, try to avoid taking work home from your office, and disconnect yourself from your laptop or smart phone several hours before your bedtime.

I twittered and googled Joshua to ask him about this article and its relevance to my book.  All of these steps or (lack of) could lead to the development of MS.  I would like to include information like this in my book.  It would be nice to discuss this with Joshua, he seems like a nice guy.


Terrible minds Blog Chuck Wendig



Chuck Wendig is a novelist, screenwriter, and game designer. This is his blog. He talks a lot about writing. And food. And pop culture. And his kid. He uses lots of naughty language. NSFW. Probably NSFL. Be advised.
Even though Chuck uses nasty language, his blog is spot on for this article, he gives great writing advice.