Stanners Bounces Back from Long Covid

Ahead of his All-Ireland Wall-Ball Semi-final this weekend St. Martins Clubman David Stanners shares his story on the effects of Long Covid. 

It was December 2021, Christmas holidays when I first started to notice the extra beat in my heart at the time I didn’t have a clue what was going on with me. I had Christmas dinner with my in-laws and the palpitations i was having that day were horrendous I couldn’t speak they were that intense I just wanted to be on my own until this passed. I didn’t have Covid yet so couldn’t link it to that.

I got Covid on January 7th, I was bed ridden for 5 days with this unbelievable pressure inside my head it felt like my head was going to explode sometimes. Once the illness had passed I was straight out for a run the count four-wall championships  were starting soon. All this time the palpitations were still there still strong in my chest yet still didn’t link it to Covid because I had the extra beat in my heart before I had Covid. It wasn’t till over a year after that the doctors told me I had a Covid infection over the Christmas holidays before I actually got Covid.

David Stanners
David Stanners

It was around spring when Sheirleen’s nagging got too much and I went to my GP. I told him my symptoms he done some tests and wrote me a emergency letter and told me to head straight to Wexford General Hospital this was a Friday, I went on the following Monday. I hate hospitals I’d do anything to avoid them, but I had to go I wanted to know what was wrong with me why was I getting this extra beat all of a sudden?

Even though I wasn’t 100% well I never gave up playing handball only me and Sheirleen knew of my condition I even played in a county Masters A doubles final with a 24 hour ECG monitor clipped onto my shorts. I felt I played well that day in fairness, it was a great game to be involved in. After many visits to hospital over the course of 15 months or so 3 or 4 ECG tests and a stress test, I really enjoyed the stress test, I wanted to see how far I could run on a treadmill which got faster after every few minutes, the nurses were getting very concerned as I got up to 16 minutes, I just saw it as another test me versus me.

15 months is a long time not knowing what is wrong with you, there was lots of uncertainty, long Covid was effecting my performance on the court for sure because after I had an attack of the extra beat, I could have it for 5-7 days which left my body drained once it passed, so it was difficult to prepare properly for a match or a tournament.

Thankfully all that is behind me now, long Covid has passed I don’t get the extra heart beat anymore, I’m free from it and enjoying my handball and play every match/tournament like it’s my last. I truly believe that looking after my body and fitness has helped me recover from this awful illness.

Your health is your wealth look after it.