Slice of Chaotic Life

The daily life of a celibate middle-aged man.

Archive for September, 2012

Mixed signals

Posted by Itlandm on September 21, 2012

I came home from work with a slight headache, a slightly sore throat, and feeling vaguely lightheaded (although that could be because it is Friday…) After fending off a wild hunger pang, I put on the pulse watch to verify that my pulse was in sick mode (20 beats or so above normal), as I felt like. It was not. It was perfectly normal. And so I put on my running shoes and went walking and jogging for close to an hour. Well, walking mostly. It felt kind of strange to jog with a headache. But when I did, my pulse rose at the normal pace, and when I went back to walking, the pulse fell back very quickly. Not like the previous week, where the pulse stayed up for a much longer time. For the first 40 minutes or so, it fell back below 115, although it stopped a little higher for the last stretch. This is normal too.

So basically the headache and sore throat seems to not make any impression on the rest of my body. That feels kind of weird. Well, it is Friday night and I would rather not go on a long trip anyway, so a small hour shall be enough.

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Posted by Itlandm on September 15, 2012

My health has not improved much over the week. Today I was only able to do two half-hour rounds of fast walking – once again my pulse went skyward as soon as I started walking.

While worrying over this, I realized that I now am bothered by only exercising an hour a day. In my case, that’s just what the doctor ordered. In general, health authorities recommend half an hour of exercise a day, five days a week. And less than a year ago I read about how, if everyone would walk 15 minutes a day, society could save billions in health expenses.

Because I have had exercise asthma since I was a toddler, I have spent the past 45 years or so thinking of myself as weak, frail and sickly. Then when the cardiologist finds out that I instead have borderline superpowers, I almost immediately start taking them for granted. And so I go “oh poor me, I only exercised an hour today”. Yeah, that is what people love to hear. The health equivalent of “the economy is tough for us all, I could only buy one new yacht this year”. ^_^

Of course, the sudden change in my body is still suspicious. But it just means that right now I am on an ordinary human level. That is probably not (in itself) a sign of impending doom.

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Unimpressive day

Posted by Itlandm on September 13, 2012

Walked and jogged (just a little, mostly walked) for an hour today. The first time I began to jog, my pulse quickly rose from 104 to 133. It accelerated much faster than normal. It stayed higher than usual for the level of activity, but I felt fine otherwise, so I took a second round of my half-hour circuit. Yesterday the same happened but I also felt that my lungs could not breathe as deeply as usual, as if I had a pneumonia or a weak asthma attack, but I felt nothing like that today. Then again I did not try jogging more than just sporadically.

At the furthest point during my second round my heart started beating over 140 even though I was not jogging. Stopping did not slow it, but entering a more meditative brain state did. Or perhaps it was just coincidence. Anyway, it went back to 120, which is acceptable for a brisk walk. More than I am used to, but still. I stopped after these two rounds. My legs felt stiff and tired and even my upper body is a bit stiff. So, not the day.

Tuesday I was sick (digestion) and Monday was raining, so these two days were the first since Sunday, when I had two 90-minute jogs (one in the morning and one after sunset) and burned some 1200 calories according to my pulse watch. (Well, 1500, but I have to subtract 300 for basic metabolism.) Today was 600, so 500 extra. I felt fine on Sunday, even after the second trip, so I doubt that has much to do with how I feel now four days later.

I won’t say “this day is fired” as some of my American friends say. My life consists entirely of days, and all of them are precious and beloved. But a great performance review it won’t get.


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Posted by Itlandm on September 8, 2012

It is 1 PM. I spent an hour walking (with a little jogging) to kindle my inner fire, as it were: To heat my body from within. The theory is, as I mentioned yesterday, that heat seems to be the one thing that can hold my darkening (fat poisoning) at bay. So far, so good: I sure got warm. The question now is: Do I have to keep doing this for the rest of the day, or is it enough to do it once to cut off the attack while it is building up? I guess we are going to find out today. 10 chocolate pieces is definitely above my normal threshold.

2 PM. It is around 24 hours since the chocolates. I am a bit sore and stiff, but I did consider doing another hour of light to moderate exercise. That would definitely burn away more than the chocolates, if I haven’t done that already. But I am not sure that is what counts.

4 PM: Had dinner and a nap. So far, so good!

5:30 PM: Took a half-hour walk/jog. Was thinking of another hour, but I was sweating after half an hour, and my knee was hurting a little before I even started. Hopefully this should be enough. If 90 minutes of light to moderate exercise is enough to counter an extra handful of chocolate, I may start eating more chocolate. It is totally worth it. ^_^



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Fat poisoning tomorrow?

Posted by Itlandm on September 7, 2012

Today after noon, I accidentally ate too many filled chocolates. Oh, I had bought and paid for them, and I am not overweight. The problem is, I react very badly to fat. If I eat more than small amounts within a 6 hour period, I usually get a horrifying illness between 24 and 48 hours later. The symptoms seem more neurological than anything. Before it starts, body temperature goes down slightly (no more than 1 degree Celsius below normal) and I tend to feel sluggish. When the attack starts, I begin feeling an intense cold coming from within. My body gets stiff and begins shivering, then shaking. Spasms of the colon and to a lesser degree stomach and bladder keep me near the bathroom. The third symptom is a steadily growing sense of fear. Sometimes the cold comes after one of the two others, but this is the most common order: Cold, spasms and fear. This is followed by a rapid decline in cognitive abilities – in simpler words, I become much dumber. I would estimate that my IQ falls to half. Finally, the cold loses its grip, I become extremely sleepy and fall into dreamless sleep whether I want to or not, even if sitting in a chair. When I wake up, I am fine, except that my digestion is upset for up to a day afterwards. Well, so far I have woken up every time. It does not necessarily seem certain at the time.

As for how much fat I can eat, it depends in part on what form it takes, but more on the absolute quantity. 6 pieces of these filled chocolates is fine, if I don’t eat anything else with fat in it for a couple hours before or after. 8 may also work. But today I ate something like 10-12, which is almost certainly plenty enough to trigger a full attack. (Half-attacks, less serious and shorter of duration, can occur when my fat intake is right on the border of what I can tolerate.)

There is only one thing I know that can stop an attack once the fat is past the stomach: Heat, lots of heat. If the room is hotter than my skin, and I shiver and shake as much as I can during the first phase, I may heat up my body enough to make the rest of the attack milder. I have also never had an attack during exercise after I warmed up and up to an hour or so at least after. This may be misleading though since I am so sluggish before the onset of the attack, I am more likely to take a nap than exercise.

I am considering trying to start light exercise around noon tomorrow, wearing heavy clothes, and keep exercising on and off until nightfall, never cooling down. But that is not very realistic, knowing myself. Most likely I will be taken by surprise again and have a very scary episode.

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Still here

Posted by Itlandm on September 6, 2012

Got a sore throat but otherwise happy. Rain today so no exercise anyway. So that was convenient.

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Posted by Itlandm on September 2, 2012

I have the more acute throat thing again that I have from time to time, where it feels like there is some kind of particles on my vocal cords that I just can’t get off. I cough and harrumph, I drink water and yogurt, but I can still feel it, as if I had inhaled some kind of coarse powder and it settled on my vocal cords. In some extreme cases in the past, my vocal cords reacted by locking up completely so I could not breathe in or out for about half a minute. Those were among the most scary moments in my life. Usually that happens right at the onset, though. Obviously they unlocked each time, or I would not be here to write about it. ┬áBut will that happen every time?

This is episodic, not chronic like the soreness when I speak more than a few paragraphs in one day. But it is the same part of the body, so the specialist should have noticed if there were any irregularities of the vocal cords when I was there a couple years ago. They looked OK, he said, except for being red. No polyps or other deformities. So it is probably not related to that. But I have no idea what it is. This time it came shortly after eating my favorite ice cream. I have never had any allergic reactions to it, and I doubt allergy would give these symptoms anyway. Even so, the episodes are so bad, I tend to never again eat whatever it was I ate shortly before they happen. That’s a fairly long list now, since these episodes have been scattered across several years.

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