A diagnosis of Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) three years ago hasn’t stopped former Scotland international cricketer Alec Steele, 82, from keeping wicket at Dundee with the aid of an oxygen tank which is strapped to his back.
While cricket’s been central to his life, Alec is passionate about raising awareness of pulmonary fibrosis. Like many people, he’d never heard of the disease until he was diagnosed.
Alec is an inspiration to many but it hasn’t been easy for him. He says he found the first six months following his diagnosis extremely difficult, both on his body and spirit. His lung function was as low as 30% so moving around and getting upstairs was a struggle.
I said to myself, although I've been told it's a terminal illness I am going to do my level best to get myself back into playing cricket. I think the most important thing that came over me was to never, ever, give up.
Alec shares his 10 top tips that help him live well with PF
1. Have absolute confidence in your medical team and understand your illness.
2. Develop a positive but realistic attitude.
3. Work out what you can and can't do and what you want to do.
4. Do the things which give you pleasure.
5. Discard or let go of the non important things in your life.
6. Look for new interest in life.
7. Enjoy the good times and be philosophical and rest when things are not so good.
8. Give yourself a good pat on the back and celebrate when you have achieved something.
9. Be kind to yourself.
10. Plan or have something to look forward to.
For PF month this September, Alec is raising awareness and funds for our cause. Please show your support for our inspirational supporter Alec and donate whatever you can. Every penny raised will help us STOP pulmonary fibrosis in its tracks.