"It's a little self indulgent..." - My mom
"After I read a sentence, I get mad at myself for caring what you're doing." -Karl Dusen

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Running again

Things are going much better. I returned to work on Thursday and saw my doctors, who said things were healing pretty well and everything I felt was normal. The overwhelming social atmosphere at the office was delightful, though it later proved to be too much of a jump for me. Also, the aromas of everybody's lunches were too much for me, after sequestering myself from all but Alex's stray cooking fumes. I needed something, and sorbet wasn't doing it anymore. On the way to my appointment I grabbed a cup of Eyetalian wedding soup at Au Bon Pain in Union Station, opened my throat and just poured it in, meatballs and all. It was glorious.

My official weight loss from my pre-op visit was 17 pounds, I'm now down to a more efficient 164. The doctors did want me to drink Ensure and other such nutrition drinks, so I am doing so for a few days to get some protein. I spent the rest of the day planning to try running when I got home, but when I fell asleep on the metro ride, I figured going to work and the doctor's office was pushing myself enough for one day.

When I got home, I scrambled four eggs, on the advice of Dan Ruef, and managed to get most of it down. The smaller pieces got lost in the jumble of my numb mouth, but the big ones were great. If that isn't a better source of protein than Ensure, then I don't want to talk to you.
I woke up Friday morning feeling like someone hit me in the head with a bat. I stayed in bed most of the day.

Saturday I woke up and tried to run. I planned to go about a half hour, and as I ran around my apartment parking lot, I felt pretty good- the extra air making it into my lungs was a nice bonus. I decided on a Fisherman++ with potential add-ons around the metro loop. I hit my first (downhill) mile in 6:45, then around 1.75 started to feel like I was in over my head. The second mile was 7;15, and as I climbed up Fisher, I was definitely struggling, my lungs crying like I hadn't felt in a while. Clearly 12 days off with barely any exercise was deleterious. I had just enough strength to make it back to my apartment, for a 3.5-mile run in 26:10- a 7:30 average. I hadn't run that slowly since the ridiculous late July temperatures abated.

The next morning I tried to push the distance and start out slower. I ran to the Greenwhich mile loop and ran it three times and finished with a loop around the parking lot for 4.4 miles in 31:00- 7:03 per mile pace, and I ran it pretty evenly.

I took Monday off of running, but I noticed big gains in my throat recovery. The pain has been reduced to the feeling of a bummer of a sore throat, in that it bothers just a small area. I had my lip stitches removed, so eating is a lot easier and less painful. I had my first serious solid food -- chicken quesadillas and a smattering of fries, incredible tater tots and chicken wings that were a little too spicy at Churchkey. Hung out with Ernst Stavro Blofeld, Murphy, Snow and Nips Murray.

Tuesday I realized just how sensitive my throat remains to seasoning when I tried to eat a steak sandwich from Quiznos for lunch. It was too much. I came home and ran a Giant-Park, it ended up 6.1 miles and I ran 41:00, 6:43 pace. Longer and faster than my last run. I like the way this is going.

Tonight I will run along with the warmup and some easy miles on the track while the GRC dudes run a workout. I feel like I at least won't die during the WPIAL alumni run on Friday, though it will be hillier than anything I'm ready for. I doubt we'll be running under 7:00 pace. A week of training in Pittsburgh in the cold will toughen me up really quickly.

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