A physical education teacher who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) has been nominated for an award due to his dedication to work and paracycling despite his condition.
Colin Wallace, from Cults, who was diagnosed with MS in April of 2018, soon after his symptoms started earlier that year, has been nominated in the Inspiration category of Aberdeen’s Sports Awards.
“I was diagnosed in April 2018 after developing symptoms in December/January,” he said.
“These included numbness and tingling down my left side, particularly in my left hand.”
The 34-year-old hasn’t let it hold him back, though, as he continues to teach PE at Bridge of Don Academy and since being diagnosed has taken up paracycling.
Despite struggling with fatigue, as well as balance and coordination problems, he continues to push through thanks to the support of his wife and two children.
“Fatigue is the biggest issue I face through MS, along with some coordination and balance problems,” said Colin.
“I have to be very careful how much and what I do and it takes me a long time to recover from things – some of them simple things I would’ve easily been able to undertake prior to diagnosis.
“Working is okay, as the school have been incredibly supportive, both staff and pupils. Luckily, I am still able to teach most activities.
“I used to run a lot, but my MS restricts me doing this.
“I tried doing a charity 10K in May last year, soon after diagnosis. However, I fell over a few times and struggled to coordinate my legs so running is no longer an option for me.
“Luckily, cycling has no adverse effect on me and the training helps alleviate some of the symptoms of my MS, such as the leg spasms and tremors I have to deal with on a daily basis.
“Day to day, my wife has been incredibly supportive and helps so much at home and fitting in the training needed for cycling.
“She works full-time and helps look after the children while supporting me.”
Colin says his biggest achievement since his diagnosis is “coming in third place at the National Paracycling Road Race Championship in July”.
When asked how being nominated for the award made him feel, Colin said: “It’s amazing to be nominated for this award.
“I’ve been involved in sport in Aberdeen for 20 years and I never imagined I’d be nominated for the inspiration award.
“My aim since diagnosis has been to try to show the positives that come with the devastating news of a disability. Since then the kindness people have shown, the opportunities I’ve had through sport and cycling and now this nomination have really boosted me to know I am doing something right.”
The Sports Awards will be held at P&J Live on Thursday October 3.
To nominate an individual or club, visit aberdeenssportsawards.co.uk