Slice of Chaotic Life

The daily life of a celibate middle-aged man.

Archive for May, 2012

Lowering my standard pulse

Posted by Itlandm on May 30, 2012

I have watched carefully, and I definitely get winded at a lower pulse than before. That is not a good sign, or at least not in itself. The context is kind of puzzling.

Literally overnight, it seems to me, my pulse went down 5-10 beats per minute about a week ago. So it is low even compared to what I was used to, which was pretty low. But this time it is not my resting pulse. It is my working pulse. But the thing is, I still get winded at the same speed and distance as before, even though my pulse is lower at that point. Actually, I seem to get winded slightly easier than before.

This makes a kind of sense, for the oxygen saturation in the blood depends on the function of both lungs and heart. The faster and deeper I breathe, the more oxygen there is in my lungs; and the more blood that flows through the lungs, the more of that oxygen is brought to the body and eventually the brain stem that regulates both the pulse and the breathing. If my lungs work as before, my heart is as strong as before, but beats more slowly, then less blood is going through the lungs and a little less oxygen is carried around. The difference is quite small, since the pulse is less than 10 BPM slower (like 130 instead of 140, for example). But I seem to get winded quicker when jogging and breathe deeper when walking fast.

In contrast to this, I seem to be able to go faster further before my legs get heavy. Early in the month, just after I had learned that I could jog without falling over dead at once, I could jog on the bridges during my first half-hour round (the bridges are from 10-15 minutes from start) but not on my second round (where the bridges are 40-45 minutes from start, obviously). By then my feet were too heavy for jogging. Now, there is no noticeable difference between the first and second round. Of course, I can still only jog short stretches if I don’t want to trigger my asthma, but I can now do this more often for longer. I don’t think that is related to the lower pulse though. It seems to have happened more gradually, and is really what you would expect. If people do something almost every day, their body will adapt to it, within reason. And this exercise is very much within reason.

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Short work trip

Posted by Itlandm on May 29, 2012

When I remembered that I was going on a mobile software course today, it was already late for a good night’s sleep. As can be expected for a viewpoint character, this triggered my asylum-seeking neighbors to holler more and further into the small hours than they have done lately. That alone could not keep me awake after five months of getting used to them, so they somehow set off some kind of alarm. Probably nothing important, but it sounded vaguely similar to my fire alarm. Took me some time to get back to sleep after that. Around 5 in the morning there was loud talking upstairs again. I hope they sleep when I’m at work, or their health will suffer. Anyway, they are not always this loud, only when I don’t have a chance to go to sleep early or get up late. That’s a small price I pay for being a viewpoint character and have the visible world throw unlikely coincidences at me to make my life story interesting.

Despite the lack of sleep (but with more delta brainwave entrainment than in a long time), I managed to stay awake during the whole course, only yawning occasionally. So that’s good. It probably helps that it was a topic I am really interested in, and which should help me do a better job helping our customers.

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Oh no! I forgot!

Posted by Itlandm on May 28, 2012

I think I am supposed to be in Grimstad tomorrow morning for a course. I knew it was this week but I did not consider that it might be the day after a holy day. (Monday is Second Day of Pentecost, which is the equivalent of a Sunday here.) For the first time in a year or so, I don’t even have my work computer with me at home this weekend. That should have made me suspicious all on its own, but I had a really good reason: I was taking the new laptop back on Friday, and even my subconscious can’t destroy a computer power supply – or can it?

No matter. I’ve set the alarm to crazy early in the morning. Let’s see if I can actually make it.

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Slowing down further

Posted by Itlandm on May 28, 2012

Today I could not get my pulse up to normal exercise levels. It remained around 110 except when I was jogging on recently had been, but jogging was hard. My legs were tired, perhaps from yesterday, or perhaps because of the low pulse, I am not sure. I jogged as much as I could, until I was close to getting winded (I don’t want to trigger an asthma attack). Jogging was unpleasant, my legs feeling heavy. But my pulse stayed lower than it used to, and soon went back down to around 110 again. Toward the end of the hour-long walk it was up to 115 though.

Either my superpowers are manifesting more for each day, or I am sick somehow. The headache tonight argues for the second. My stress level of 2% argues for the first. (As measured by Azumio StressCheck). That’s pretty much as close to Nirvana you can come without dying, I guess.

This weird thought has been coming and going for a couple days now. That somehow the esoteric stuff may be spilling over into my bodily life. I have no idea whether this is a good thing or a bad thing. Probably it is just another coincidence.

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Slowing down

Posted by Itlandm on May 27, 2012

As I strapped on my wrist watch today, it showed 55 beats per minute. Standing up. That’s what used to be my resting pulse. Back then I was worried because it was lower than usual. Since then, everyone has told me that this is wonderful. I guess it still is. But my heart is beating slower and slower – not just by the year anymore, but seemingly by the week or day. Well, it sped up to near normal levels after that, but I am not sure if that was because of the shock of seeing it so low, or whether that first measurement was wrong somehow.

I walked for an hour, and the heart rate was back to normal. But no more. There is no increase after 40 minutes anymore. A little later I walked another hour. Still no increase. My legs get tired eventually, especially since I jog short stretches when my pulse falls to 115 or below.  But my body seems to have changed in some way again.

Everyone is so happy for me, but I am worried and don’t understand what’s happening to my body. I sound like a woman who is pregnant for the first time. Well, a point of empathy gained, for the duration.

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New laptop

Posted by Itlandm on May 25, 2012

With the Black Beast rebooting randomly and the reserve being a Windows Vista machine that has a challenge playing Sims 2, it seemed a good time to get a laptop again. The old ones are broken or outdated, although I am sure children in Africa would be thankful for the newest of them. Well, some children in Africa. Not all parts of Africa, I suspect.

Anyway, Asus N56V.  It is pretty good, although it doesn’t have a SSD but an old, slow hard disk. Having 6 GB of RAM helps, though. This is particularly nice for Sims 3, which needs a lot of RAM to run large neighborhoods. It can use the hard disk (or SSD) as “paged memory” or “virtual memory”, and with SSD the speed of this is actually acceptable. But there is a weak link when saving games, where it only uses physical memory. When I have played a neighborhood long enough (longer the smaller it is), the game runs into this limit and crashes with an Error 12 instead of saving. Saving frequently seems to help for a while, but after a couple more days the neighborhood is lost forever. You can still export your favorite families from the game and import them in another neighborhood, and they will keep their stuff, but all their friends and history will be lost. So, more RAM is good. Probably, unless there is something else to mess things up.

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Computer troubles

Posted by Itlandm on May 24, 2012

So the quad-core is in trouble again. It suddenly reboots every few minutes when I play a game, even a browser game. (In fact, browser games in Firefox seem to explode it faster than Sims 3, which lasted a quarter of an hour.) It takes much longer to blow it up with reading and writing in Opera or massive copying of files, and it seems to not restart at all when left with just the Folding@home client (using 25% of the processor, on my machine.)

The symptoms are quite similar to before the power supply melted down last time. This one should be a little stronger, though, and the temperature monitor does not indicate a problem. Still, it seems too much of a coincidence that this problem shows up shortly after the temperatures approach tropical. (It was around 30 degrees C in the room – that’s 8 degrees below a fever, for you anti-metrics. ^_^)

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Sluggish summer

Posted by Itlandm on May 23, 2012

The sudden summer heat has made me slow down. The disturbing part is that I don’t notice this myself. When I am out walking (and jogging short stretches), I feel like I keep my usual speed. But Runkeeper is not fooled. Every 5 minutes it informs me of my distance and speed, and both are a little less than they used to be before the heat wave.

I like to think it is the heat, at least. After my gut flora grew back to somewhere in the 80-90% range of normal, I have gained two pounds in a week and a half, or so. The good news is that I am no longer quite as hungry. At least this answers the question of how athletes can avoid starving to death.


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Summer, suddenly

Posted by Itlandm on May 22, 2012

Until yesterday, it seems to me, the temperature was “pretty mild for March”. Today: “Just right for July.” This will take some getting used to.

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On the road again

Posted by Itlandm on May 17, 2012

After three days with minimal exercise – basically only the walking that is part of my commute, about half an hour a day – I was getting rested and restless at the same time. I was aware that my glycogen reserves were almost certainly full and any carbs above the basic needs would just be floating around as blood sugar until it could get converted into fat or burned off. So in the afternoon, I took a rather long walk again. Well, an hour and a half is pretty decent, I think – I burned some 800 calories even though I jogged very little.

As expected, my pulse stayed fairly low. It was not anywhere near record low even when I started, but it held up great. And after an hour and a half, I was less tired than I usually am after one hour. I am pretty sure the glycogen is involved in the low pulse, not sure about the tiredness.

Of course, as soon as I came home, I drank a couple glasses of Pepsi. ^_^ All the sugar you eat right after exercise is stored in your muscles, or that is the impression I get.

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