Slice of Chaotic Life

The daily life of a celibate middle-aged man.

Archive for the ‘Exercise’ Category

A little exercise again

Posted by Itlandm on January 6, 2013

I have been rather inactive for the last two months or more. It rained almost all November, so there wasn’t much opportunity for my usual long walks and jogs. (Before that was the Mysterious Illness.) December came and with it icy cold and howling wind. Roads and pavements were covered with ice. Then the last week it has been raining almost continually. But yesterday and today have been mild and sunny. (This combination is highly unusual, not to say unnatural, in Norway at this time of the year. It has happened before, but it doesn’t happen every year and it doesn’t last long.) So naturally I took a walk. Yesterday I didn’t realize that the weather was mild until I was on my way to the grocers, so I just took a longer walk home. Today, however, I put on my pulse watch and my jogging shoes.

It is not like I have stayed in bed for the past two months: I go to work five days a week and the commute includes approximately half an hour of walking each day, in four parts. That’s generally considered enough to keep the body aware that this is still inhabited, to put the that way. In other words, half an hour a day is enough for maintenance. Less than that, and the risk of “lifestyle diseases” starts to increase quickly.

My pulse while walking is pretty much the same as it was in fall, but jogging is a different matter. Today I could only jog for a few seconds before my pulse rose above the target rate. So the round-trip that usually takes me 29 minutes actually took 33 today. I also felt stiffer than usual and even got a small blister.

It was okay, I guess. I record this for science. ^_^

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Posted by Itlandm on November 21, 2012

As unlikely as it may seem, it has rained most of the month. Usually it is rare on the south coast of Norway for it to rain two days in a row, but it is common for there to be sun two days in a row. This month it has been the other way around. I am as baffled as anyone. Of course, my internal representation of reality may be wrong. Perhaps it is common with such rain and I have just not noticed. But probably not, given that I have traditionally used rain as a way to give myself a break from the daily exercise. This month I think it has been two sunny days, the days when I had diarrhea. ¬†Even overcast days without rain have been few. So there hasn’t been much exercise this month, just half an hour now and then.

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A change in the change

Posted by Itlandm on November 18, 2012

Took a long hillwalk today, burned almost 900 calories according to the pulse watch. I know it is exaggerating, at the very least it includes my basic metabolism as well – it claims I burn 100 calories an hour just writing, so there’s that. Still, it was a decent workout today. And the first decent workout in weeks. It has been raining almost every day this month: I think maybe the only sunny days were the two when I had diarrhea. -_- There has been a couple dry but overcast days (or at least parts of days) early in the moon, when I walked for half an hour. If it rains, I just stay inside.

Before that, all of October was Mysterious Illness month, where my pulse (at least in the afternoon) was at normal human levels, not the ridiculously low that I’ve had the last years. As I said earlier this month, this seems to be over, whatever it was. Of course, if I live long enough, new mysterious illnesses will pile up. Life is like that, temporary. But at this minute at least, it is quite enjoyable.



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Lower than ever

Posted by Itlandm on November 6, 2012

I believe this may be the first time I have actually seen my sitting pulse below 50. It was 48, but jumped up a bit from the shock of seeing that number. Admittedly this is late at night and my body would probably like to be asleep already. Soon it will, the neighbors upstairs have stopped the music and calmed down. Still, it was unexpected. Now during my vacation at home, my pulse has fallen back to the levels of last summer, unlike October where it was 10-15 beats higher each afternoon. I am not sure what is going on, but I assume this is a good thing. If anything, my pulse now seems to be lower that it has ever been, despite a month of only minimal exercise (walking for up to half an hour, instead of walking+jogging for an hour and a half as I used to).

I still think it is suspect that I have a pulse usually reserved for state-level athletes, but hey, after the past month of uncertainty, I’ll take it.

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You’re doing this on purpose, body

Posted by Itlandm on October 28, 2012

In the late morning, my pulse was back below 60. So I shaved, put on my pulse watch and dressed for a walk. By the time I was ready, my pulse was over 70 sitting, and it remained +10 or more for the duration of the trip. It really seems that my heart now only hold the “old” speed only when it thinks I am going to stay indoors. I suppose that makes some kind of sense, but why has it started thinking that way now?

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Will the real pulse please report?

Posted by Itlandm on October 15, 2012

I measured my pulse at work today, and it was below 60. That is excellent. In fact, it is lower than the resting pulse of ordinary men. I used to worry about it being too low (bradycardia) until I had my heart checked at a specialist lab in May and was basically told I could participate in top athletics if I just took my asthma medicine. I have avoided that, though, as bodies have a tendency to get used to drugs and stop working correctly without them. I would rather not depend on a chemical for breathing if I can avoid it.

Back to today, as I came home from work eager to exercise. But by now my pulse was up to +10 over what it used to be for the last months. (120-125 instead of 110-115 when walking quickly. Normally I have to jog every couple minutes to stay in that zone.) This is like it was during the 14 days of Mysterious Illness. Was the day of normal pulse just a fluke? Why did it seem OK at work but not in the afternoon? I don’t understand it. And I can’t think of any infection that would behave like that. It is likely not mental – I was eager to get back to my exercise, but not excited in any way.

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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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