Jane Potter's Story

Date: Tue 7th May 2019

When did you first notice you had Raynaud's?

I regularly play football and during 2011, I noticed that my hands, nose, chin and feet were turning white and blue and were very painful. I saw the doctor in May 2011, had a number of blood tests and the results came back with a positive result for Raynaud's and Systemic Scleroderma.

How did the condition affect your life?

My hands, feet and face become so cold quite easily and it feels that they don't belong to me, it is very painful. I should stay out of the sun, wrap up and avoid any cold/wet environments

How was your sport affected by your condition?

I still continue to participate in football and running however I need to be mindful and plan for my condition e.g. having a snood, gloves and handwarmers, extra socks and feet warmers and gels in my boots/running shoes. I play through the pain.

When diagnosed what changes did you make to your lifestyle?

My specialist advised me to avoid outside sports and getting cold and wet – but I was not going to give up the sport I love and have adjusted by wearing more layers and using warming aids and painkillers. I get changed very quickly out of my sports gear into dry warm clothing.

What exercise do you partake in now and how does it help your condition?

I play football, go to the gym and run – the more I do the better I feel, it stretches me and exercise is good for mental stimulation – it is my way of not letting this be detrimental to what I love to do.

What top tips would you give to others with Raynaud's who love sport?

Stick at it and find ways to keep warm, prepare for the conditions and have a change clothes and get a hot drink and get warm asap afterwards.

Would you recommend others who experience Raynaud's to participate in sport to help manage their condition?

Absolutely it helps with circulation which reduces the pain, don't give in.

What is your next biggest sporting challenge?

In 2019 my aim is to run a half marathon and walk the Inca trail.

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We rely on the generosity of our community to continue to support people with scleroderma and Raynaud's.

If you're looking for another inspiring story, read how Sylvia managed to keep running after her diagnosis here: Sylvia's Story of Using Diet and Exercise to Thrive with Scleroderma