Sunday, February 22, 2009

Licking My Wounds

Instead of celebrating, I am licking my wounds after deciding to drop out of the HUTH. I waited until 8:45 a.m. this morning to make the call, and it was a hard call in so many ways, but my body just was not recovered enough to do it. And yes, there were tears of shame and frustration involved in much of my morning.

I went to the gym at the time of my team's wave in the event, but had to stop running after just a mile. I have some work in front of me to recover my endurance after that flu. This is the first time that I have had a serious stomach flu since I had my large intestine removed a few years ago, and I just didn't expect the toll it would take on my body. Yes, I have known since the surgery that dehydration is a more complex and serious issue for me than for someone with a large intestine water removal from food is one of its major functions, but I guess I did not realize that it would also mean that it would take so long for me to recover.

I spoke with my surgeon's office last week and they advised that I focus on eating foods with a higher sodium content in order to retain as much fluid as possible, and I certainly did that. As a matter of fact, large quantities of hot and sour soup have played a major role in my diet for the past three days that I have been able to keep food down again. And I have gained back almost 5 of the 9 pounds that I lost during the flu days, but I guess it was not enough to make me feel strong again.

This is the first event that I have signed up for that I have not done (well, one was canceled, but that is not in my control). And I have been dealing with major feelings of failure because I feel like a quitter. I am not going to let that derail me, though, and am just going to pick up where I left off and look towards my next event: The Shamrock Shuffle 8K on March 29th. But I am going to mourn this all over again as I talk with my team tomorrow and face the failure all over again.

I guess there's always next year.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Scary Sick

Today is Day 3 of some kind of horrible illness that has invaded my body. If you have issues with potty talk, please go on your way and have a great day without reading any further.

It started on Monday. I didn't really think much of the diarrhea until the intense stomach cramping started in the afternoon. Since I no longer have a large intestine, diarrhea can be somewhat normal for me. But once the cramping began, I realized that I had been having diarrhea all morning and started putting two and two together: I was sick.

Cue Tuesday. I was so dizzy that there was no way I could make it to work. I managed to get the child to all-day care (school was closed), and then spent the rest of the day in bed. I was still suffering from the same issue as Monday, and could barely eat because I felt so nauseous.

This morning I tried to get myself in the shower to get dressed and in to work. I was so light-headed and weak that I could not even stand in the shower long enough to get it all going and had to sit down. I was also down over EIGHT POUNDS since Monday morning, which is crazy scary because it is all from dehydration. I have never had this happen before.

I am still having diarrhea for the third day in a row, and now my daughter has it, too, so we are both home for the day. I really do not know how I am going to care for her today because I cannot stand up for more than a minute or so without feeling faint.

This has made me appreciate my health so much. It is bringing back my memories of the years with Ulcerative Colitis where I had internal bleeding on a daily basis and had trouble climbing the stairs in my own home. I cannot WAIT to get my strength back and hit the gym again... it's a shame that it took this illness to drive that home again.

Sunday, February 15, 2009


It's amazing what happens when my mind starts playing games. In this case, amazing does not refer to a good turn of events, though. Exactly one week from today (because my wave begins at 10:45 a.m.), I will be climbing the John Hancock building here in Chicago for the long-awaited Hustle Up the Hancock event. As the days have ticked away, that reality has been scaring the shit out of me.

My exercising has slacked (I haven't worked out since Thursday night), my eating has worsened (I am not even going to discuss the Mexican dinner, cannoli cake, and Godiva chocolate feast last night), and I have become very unsure of myself. I know that everyone tells me that I can do it, but my body does not seem to agree.

There are some big things at play here in my mind, and I think they are all getting mixed up in this event and thus causing it to take on a meaning bigger than it should. I need to focus on it as an hour of my life, and not a measure of myself. I need to find the fun it and not live in my fear. But I only have a week to figure all of this out. Wish me luck.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Day of Rest

The good news is that I was able to complete three sets of 12 floors of stairs at lunch yesterday... woo-hoo! And I didn't spend the rest of the day with sore lungs... double woo-hoo! The great news is that I took a Day of Rest from intentional exercise today... YIPPEE!!!

But I have to be honest: It was 50 degrees in Chicago today, and I was seriously thinking of getting outside for a run. But my legs had other ideas, so I stuck to the Day of Rest and just ran a lot of errands and made some fun social visits to get out of the house and enjoy the beautiful weather. Spring cannot come soon enough for me, and it is going to be hard to watch the temperatures plummet back down into the 20s next weekend as currently predicted.

Tomorrow it is back to the gym for a very short run and then the Stairmill. I have committed to do the stairs at work on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday of next week, and am aiming to complete four sets of 12 floors of stairs on Friday. The Hustle Up the Hancock is two weeks from tomorrow (Sunday the 22nd), and I am going to taper my workouts before the event and will do my last one on Thursday the 19th so that my legs can feel capable of tackling the beast.

Now I am off to tuck my daughter in bed, and am going to tuck myself in, too, for some reading. I slept for 10 hours last night, and may just try that again tonight. That would be the perfect ending to my Day of Rest!

Thursday, February 5, 2009


I am sore and tired. I think I am over-training trying to get ready for the Hustle Up the Hancock. It's not that I am doing crazy amounts of exercise each day, but the intensity is much greater than what I am used to doing. I have gone to bed several EVENINGS with very sore lungs from my LUNCHTIME stair climbing session, and my calves feel like overly tight guitar strings right now.

But here's the thing: I feel like a wimp. The people I am training with at work are in such better shape than I am, and they want to do the stairs every day, and it just does not seem to be affecting them as much as it is affecting me. Call me stupid (and I know I am), but I am just too proud to back off. Especially since I am training with the man of my dreams, and he keeps encouraging me to go farther (yes, he is engaged and totally unavailable, but I am still very under the influence of his charms).

I took today off from stair climbing, but then went to the gym and ran 2 miles. This felt like a break to me! The good news is that my mile pace has certainly improved since I added Jillian and the stair climbing, so that makes me happy. :-)

Okay, enough of the pity party. Tomorrow I am scheduled to do three sets of 12 floors, so wish me luck!