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On My Way #2

Old 09-02-2015, 10:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Jsbodhi View Post
Just checking to say hi, will write more later xoxo
Thanks for popping in. Hope all is well with you.

So Far

Today's going fine. Although up later than originally intended last night, I was at the gym at my targeted time and had another good workout. My legs are still a little sore from Monday's "fun", but I was able to deal with a short run yesterday so after no leg work today tomorrow's run should be even easier. Saturday will see me doing another double digit mile run, I think I'm slated for 15. As always happens when my training runs get into the upper double digits they begin to take up a lot of my mental capital because I start to think about them days in advance. They're really not fun, but the prize is me crossing the finish line on race day and being able to not have the race be 26.2 miles of torture.

It's almost guaranteed that at some point during the race I'm going to have to will myself to keep going, but that's also part of the training process. I need my mind to be strong and override the complaints of my body when my muscles are screaming that they are tired and it's a big reason why I like to train alone. Come race day I'll be on the course without the benefit of my wife (who I've run many half marathons with) beside me or a friend imploring me to fight through the uncomfortableness. It will be just me and the miles and the better trained I am the better my race day experience will be.

Sorry about the tangent.
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Old 09-03-2015, 01:35 PM
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Due to poor logistical planning on my part I was not able to get my run done today. Truth be told I could have, and still can, go to my gym and use a treadmill, but I abhor those things and since it's still about 90F/32C and humid my next run is going to be on Saturday. Not the worst problem in the world obviously, but still annoying because it was preventable.

After all those days of restaurant meals during the latter part of last week's work week and the weekend, I'm very happy that we've fallen back into a more normal routine and eating at home. We'll probably go out to dinner on Saturday, but I'm fine with that; it's the multiple meals in succession that I don't care for. It's somewhat of a double edged sword; like most people we're eating out for festive and good reasons, and I truly enjoy that aspect, but the downside is that it makes it so much harder to make healthy food choices.
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Old 09-04-2015, 02:24 PM
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My plan for the evening is to cook dinner and then hang out with my wife and daughter for a while. They have a girls night out to see a local band at the pub that I've mentioned before; I could go, but chose to read and maybe watch some sports.

Tomorrow morning will see me lacing up my sneakers and going for a long training run; the first part will be with my wife and I'll do the second half by myself since she's not training for a marathon.
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Old 09-05-2015, 08:34 AM
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Got my 15 miles done with not too much left in the tank.

Now on to some yard work, a walk with the puppy, and dinner with my wife tonight.
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Old 09-06-2015, 08:47 AM
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I went to dinner with my wife last night. A very decent place, not fine dining, but what they do they do well. We're sitting outside enjoying the last remnants of the "official" summer season, the temperature is still north of 80F/27C, there's a slight breeze, we're having a pleasant conversation, and I'm digging the experience. I'm also thinking of having a nice cold beer. After all, I did run 15 miles earlier in the day, did some yard work, and then went on a 4 mile walk with the puppy. A very valid argument can be made that 15 miles is not chump change and my AV was taking that side of the debate, but I also knew that it's barely half of what I'll need to do in six weeks. It countered with the fact that I've never previously stopped drinking during my marathon training and probably without exception have had a glass of wine or a beer during dinner the night before every race of at least a half marathon distance that I have ever run. All this fodder for you know who was getting louder, but before the rascal could get a stranglehold on my thought process I was able to seize the advantage and stick to my club soda with lemon.

And so it was. If it was a sport and the papers reported on it, this morning's edition would have read:

Me: 1
AV: 0

Going on a hike this afternoon with my wife, daughter, and puppy.

Enjoy the day!
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Old 09-08-2015, 12:16 PM
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I had a routine doctor's appointment which included going over blood tests I took last week. All is fine, including my liver enzymes.

So, what's my AV's first thought? You got it, "All is good so you can drink." No, I can't. The experience of millions has shown that if I start drinking heavily again eventually, unless I'm some mutant, I will have health issues. It would just be a matter of time. Furthermore, while health is vitally important, it's not the only lens to view how my life would be affected by drinking. Things such as waking up clear headed, being able to fully engage with my family, being able to participate in all the athletic endeavors I enjoy are other positives that are relevant. Obviously, the list is not comprehensive, but I believe it's enough to get my point across. All of those things are more important to me than alcohol and I am not going to let the drug take them from me no matter what my AV is chirping about.
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Old 09-10-2015, 10:15 AM
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I opened a bottle of wine this morning. Not to drink, but to use a little bit in the tomato sauce I'm cooking as part of tonight's dinner. It really wasn't a big deal and I had no interest in having a glass or a swig from the bottle; I'm not even sure it's newsworthy, but figured I would write about it anyway.

That's there's an uncorked bottle of wine downstairs is a non issue for me as there are plenty of bottles of wine and liquor in my basement bar, a place I go to frequently because it's also where I store my stock of club soda.

Just another day.
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Old 09-11-2015, 11:10 AM
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Fourteen years. In some ways a long time and yet in another context a short one. My memories of that horrific day are still as vivid as the day of the actual events. I saw the towers fall in real life and not on TV, my first job out of college was working on the 98th floor of the North Tower, the neighborhood was where I met my wife in 1981 and it was our playground for many years. I lost friends that day, came extremely close to losing my wife, and I can think of at least one dear friend who should have been in the South Tower, but went into work late that day. Other friends, including my next door neighbor, were already there, but were fortunate enough to evacuate the buildings before they collapsed.

Everybody I know in my community was affected and the bone chilling recollections have not gone away for any of us. Stories of utter sadness, uplifting tales of folks showing huge amounts of humanity toward strangers in need, perseverance, and in some cases either good or bad luck are all elements that are included in everyone's personal narrative of that day.

What does this have to do with SR? Not much I guess, but it's my journal and wanted to sort out my thoughts by succinctly writing them down and state that despite the sadness I feel today I am not going to drink.

SR friends, we all need to cherish our days.
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Old 09-11-2015, 11:16 AM
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Very well said, my friend. It was a horrific day, full of events from which we will never 'fully' recover.
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Old 09-11-2015, 11:39 AM
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Originally Posted by SoberLeigh View Post
Very well said, my friend. It was a horrific day, full of events from which we will never 'fully' recover.
I don't think I ever will. A couple of weeks ago, having nothing to do with 9/11, me, my wife, and daughter were having a discussion about crying. My wife is prone to it, my daughter not as much, and me very rarely for whatever reason. My daughter who was almost 9 that day stated that the first time she could remember me crying was when my wife walked into our house at around 11 PM that night.
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Old 09-11-2015, 12:05 PM
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Too late to edit my previous post without bothering an administrator.

I knew she was safe because I talked with her shortly after the attack, but we had no direct communication for over 12 hours afterward. She had a cell phone, but the cell phone towers in Manhattan were on the top of one of the towers and there was no such thing as a smart phone in 2001. Yes, there were pay phones, but even if they were functional the lines to use them were ridiculously long and most peoples' priority was figuring out how to get home. I did get an indirect update about her around 7 PM. What people were doing was calling a loved one and giving them a list of other people to call to let those folks, like me, know what their loved ones' were status was regarding getting of the island.

When I underscored extremely in my last post it was because she was supposed to be at an industry conference at Windows on the World, which was the restaurant on the 110th floor of one of the towers, but having gone for many years in a row declined at the last minute that year. All of her professional friends and colleagues who attended, and my many tried to persuade her to go again, died.
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Old 09-12-2015, 01:37 PM
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I had a lousy training run, but managed to complete my intended distance. Frankly, my wife is concerned about me seriously injuring myself during the race and suggested that we call it off. As of now, that's not going to happen. That stated, I'm pretty sure the race experience will be less than enjoyable for a lot of the time, but the lure of crossing the finish line is enough for me to endure a lot. Heck, I ran my last NYC marathon against my doctor's and physical therapist's advice and while it wasn't pretty and I paid the price afterward, if the same situation presented itself and I had knowledge of what it would do to my body I would make the same decision again. And again.

Tonight I'm going out to dinner with my wife, my daughter, and her boyfriend. Not sure what the (not so) young ones will be doing afterward, but I'm sure me and my wife will be spending the balance of the evening at home.
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Old 09-14-2015, 09:58 AM
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I successfully navigated the weekend which ended last night with a dinner party we hosted. As always it was lots of work and it turned out to be a late Sunday night because after cleaning up I stayed awake to watch the US Open and then some (American) football. Fortunately, I was in fine (and sober) shape for a strong workout at the gym this morning.

Per our usual routine we have no social plans during the week, but this upcoming weekend I'm getting together with some very long time friends at a party with an open bar. For many reasons the temptation will be high, but as long as I keep the bigger picture in mind I should be okay.
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Old 09-14-2015, 01:54 PM
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Rant Alert

Last Thursday morning I took another CT scan to determine whether or not there was any change in my lung nodule. The imaging center told me it would take between 24 and 48 hours to get the results to my pulmonologist, meaning she should have received them by Saturday at the latest. She should have definitely had them by today, but I think her office is closed because my phone calls have gone straight to voice mail and not to the receptionist that normally answers the phone. While that may be rational, the fact that Monday is drawing to a close and I still don't have any information is not making me a happy camper. Furthermore, she knows I want to discuss other treatment options for whatever has diminished my breathing capacity because the current protocol is not working. Is my asthma getting worse, did my recent bout with pneumonia really screw up my lungs, has the nodule increased and is now starting to have detrimental effects on my lungs? Any of the aforementioned, all of them, or something else out of left field? I absolutely hate the unknown stage and am becoming increasingly discouraged with her because I truly get the sense that she is not viewing my situation with the same amount of concern that she should be.

In some sense I can understand that because when I go to her office the waiting room will more often than not have a person tethered to an oxygen tank or is winded just walking into one of the examination rooms. Clearly, my situation is different by an order of several magnitudes, but it's my body, my life, and I want to know what's going and, more importantly, figure out an effective solution.

I'm not looking to turn back the clock 30 years, but getting back to where I was a year and a half ago when I had the cardiovascular capacity to run marathons at a faster pace than I can run 5 miles now doesn't seem to be seeking too much. Bottom line, I've been under her care for well over a year and not only have I not seen improvement the trend is going south.

I'll be honest, the frustration has given my AV ammunition that's particularly strong today and I'm in at best hour to hour mode. I'm countering with logic and determination. Drinking will in no manner change the fact that I've not yet heard from the doctor or encourage her to contact me and regardless of what the findings of the scan are alcohol will only impede me getting healthy.

Thanks SR. There's really nobody I can call at this moment to voice my frustrations, but being able to come here and vent is tremendously helpful.
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Old 09-15-2015, 11:39 AM
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I'm still waiting to hear the results from my CT scan; toward that end I spoke with my pulmonologist's office and according to the office manager they just received the scan today. The current status is that the doctor will review the results and get back to me possibly today and by the latest tomorrow. So the waiting continues.
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Old 09-15-2015, 02:16 PM
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My pulmonologist's office closed for the day without her getting back to me. Frustrating to say the least, but I'm trying to stay positive. Assuming she did look at my results, something I have no knowledge about, I'd like to assume that if something was amiss she would contact me right away. If that scenario is factual then no news is good news, but temporary closure until my next scan would be nice. Of course there's nothing to suggest that is any of that is based in reality and there's a real possibility that she never looked at my scan.

Ugh.
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Old 09-16-2015, 08:39 AM
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I finally spoke with my pulmonologist. The good news is that there has been no change in my nodule and my pneumonia is a thing of the past. The not so good news is that I have a small inflammation on one of my lungs, but the doctor said it was so small it's meaningless. As for my continue breathing problems we decided on a tweak and I'm to follow up with her in a week.

I pressed her about the inflammation because it was a new development and I thought she was being too cavalier, but she insisted that there was no reason for concern. She's the doctor and I don't even play one on TV, but if something that shouldn't be there is now present when it was not previously that doesn't seem right to me. It may be a situation where there is nothing to do for it at the moment, but that never came up.
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Old 09-16-2015, 08:48 AM
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If I remember you have asthma, also????? Could it be inflammation from that?

Edit: sorry, I just read-up the post chain and see that you do have asthma.
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Old 09-16-2015, 09:05 AM
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I hope that the tweak brings relief, GC.

(alcohol is dehydrating which isn't good for asthma but I'm sure you already know that).
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Old 09-16-2015, 10:42 AM
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Originally Posted by SoberLeigh View Post
I hope that the tweak brings relief, GC.
Thanks SL.

Coincidentally, this morning I got an email from a Wilmington, DE friend of mine who inquired if I wanted to run a marathon in Rehoboth Beach at the beginning of December. I declined.[/quote]

Originally Posted by SoberLeigh View Post
(alcohol is dehydrating which isn't good for asthma but I'm sure you already know that).
I was aware, but thanks for making sure. I'm normally pretty good about staying hydrated as even before I had breathing issues I could feel a difference in how I felt.

Musings

Without boring anyone with details, my pulmonologist and I aren't always on the same page when it comes to my treatment because she is of the belief, which I've written about before, that I'm in better shape than I believe I am. The standard that I've set is not to be healthier than most/all of her patients, but to be able to breathe as I did up until the past 2 years. I keep threatening (not to her) to find another pulmonologist that's more attuned to my goals, but the impetus to do so quickly dissipates and inertia sets in. Sad, but true.

Maybe my goals are not possible and I'm going to have to face the fact that some of the athletic endeavors I took pride in accomplishing are beyond my physical capabilities and my breathing on a daily basis will never be easy again. I'm not ready to concede just yet and while I don't expect the 2015 version of me to be able to keep up with myself from 10 years ago, I do want to be able to breathe "normally" and put as much effort into doing the best that I can without having my results curtailed by not being able to train properly. What I mean is I don't expect to be able to lift as much weight, complete a marathon run (26.2 miles) or a century bicycle race (100 miles) in as fast a time as my younger self no matter how hard I train, but I want to be able to do all of that stuff if I want to and am willing to do what's necessary to be prepared. I have and can continue to alter my lifting pace and weights so I think I'll always be able to move the iron, but if I can't breathe properly then endurance races are off the table.

I know a lot of the above must have come across as a whine-fest. I'm not feeling sorry for myself, just expressing my emotions about things that are important to me, but not the most important aspects of my life. Family and friends are far ahead in my personal hierarchy and as I've reached the point where I don't need binoculars to see my 60th birthday I may have to recognize that I'm reaching a point where my mind is willing to write checks that my body can't cash. If so, it won't be without a fight. :-)

Writing here helps me sort out my feelings and I believe helps me stay sober. Thanks SR!
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