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Question for aerobic exercisers... - John [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
John

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Question for aerobic exercisers... [Jul. 23rd, 2013|11:00 am]
John
I think I know some people who do now, or used to, exercise regularly - bicycling, running, etc..

Here's a question for you, while I quest to find "normal".

Let's say you're exercising, and you're not going all out, but you know that you are pushing yourself. If you promised yourself "5 more minutes" you know you might look at the timer 15 or more times while waiting for that 5 minutes to be *over*. And maybe you realize you're getting a bit of a headache, and if you keep going, it'll be an awful headache. You stop before your body forces you, and before your headache blossoms, but you think to yourself (since you're not training hard for any particular reason) "that was pointlessly macho and stupid." But - no immediate physical after effects other than catching your breath, and letting your heart rate (slowly) get back to normal. You don't want to walk a mile or mow the lawn, but if you *had* to, no problem.

Would you expect to feel crappy the next day? Not, you know, "please, just kill me now" but, "wow, if I really want to feel like hammered poo, all I have to do is try another work out just that intense! I think I'll take it extra easy today."

I decided to do a hard workout yesterday. I was getting shades of a headache, and yes, I was looking at the timer on my tread mill *very* frequently, before I decided to slow down, and then I probably worked out far too much longer at a lighter pace. Heart rate was mid-150s, which is high for a middle-aged guy, but not "danger zone" (that's about 170). And today I feel a bit wiped out, a bit head-achy, and yes, very much like "If I want to feel like hammered poo...". But if this was as bad as it got, as long as I wasn't stupid, I could deal. Especially if I could do another hard workout (maybe not *as* hard) tomorrow, after a full day of rest.

Right now, I need to know what is "normal" so I can tell doctors "no, I'm *not* at 'normal' yet" if it's true. I don't want to ask for more than "normal" because that means higher doses with concomitant higher risks. But I'm very much *not* content with anything less than normal. And I don't know what "normal" is, not from the inside.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: jhetley
2013-07-23 08:31 pm (UTC)
I don't get headaches from exercise. Muscle aches, joint aches, yes, but those are mostly after I've finished the bike ride. The stiffness and soreness extends for a day or two, and usually clears up when I start out again. Don't keep track of my heart rate -- no monitor.
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[User Picture]From: johnpalmer
2013-07-23 08:57 pm (UTC)
Okay. When my heart rate gets into the 140s and 150s, I know it. I don't know how fast - that's why I wear the heart monitor - but I can feel that it's going pretty fast.

Do you ever have that sensation (probably when biking uphill, into a headwind - both ways, I'm sure!)? If not, these aren't the same kinds of things, but thank you for reminding me to think about body aches and such, too; I have to remember them.
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[User Picture]From: jhetley
2013-07-23 09:47 pm (UTC)
I know my pulse rate is elevated when I get to the top of a hill, yes . . . never tried to either count it or wear a monitor. My resting rate is low, 55-60, and my blood pressure is low. In fact, my wife made me get my thyroid count checked.
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[User Picture]From: txanne
2013-07-23 08:34 pm (UTC)
"Normal" is different for everybody. Because you have been undiagnosed for so very long, "normal" for you may well be unlike other people's "normal."

When I'm dealing with asthma, I tell the doctor something like your description above--"when I do X, I feel Y immediately and Z later on. I can live with Y but Z is bad. Can you fix it?" The last time I did that, she found ways to fix both Y and Z.

The important thing is that your doctor should listen to you and try different things based on what you say. If not, get a new doctor.
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[User Picture]From: johnpalmer
2013-07-23 08:43 pm (UTC)
It's true, but fatigue and exercise recovery are two things that I know will be directly impacted by my treatment. So I need some guesses for what I might expect if I was "normal", so I don't under or overshoot.
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[User Picture]From: txanne
2013-07-23 08:47 pm (UTC)
Wouldn't it be more useful if you gave them the unfiltered data? "Here's what I do; here's how I feel."
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[User Picture]From: johnpalmer
2013-07-24 05:04 pm (UTC)
Well, the data has to be filtered in some way. It's like the old joke, "after this operation, will I be able to play the piano?" "Well... sure!" "Good, because I could never play it before!"

I saw one scale for exercise that was pretty good. It said rather than measuring VO2max (whatever the heck *that* is) and heart rate, one could ask a person to rate a workout from 1-10, where 10 is something like running all out, as fast as you can, as long as you can, and 1 is a gentle walk. And the suggestion I recall was that one should be able to to hit 7-8 for about 20 minutes, or something is wrong. Now, for some people, 7-8 would be a really brisk-for-them walk, for me it would be a slow run - ten minute miles, maybe 9 minute miles if I was doing really well.

But there's a problem, here. I'm *used* to feeling like crap. I have a hard time saying "wow, I feel like crap when I'm exercising, I guess I'm going too hard." If I stop doing things because doing them makes me feel like crap, I'm in big trouble. So I'm not sure if I'm really hitting 7, or 8, or if any normal person would say "Dude! That's a 9, closing on a 10!"

So I'm trying to learn what level of crap-feeling is normal. Because I don't think that's what a family doctor or GP or PCP or whatever is trained in.
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[User Picture]From: essaying
2013-07-23 09:48 pm (UTC)
Sometimes yes, sometimes no. Which is not much help for you, I know, but still. Sometimes I have a good brisk walk on the treadmill, using the "enough breath to talk but not to sing" criterion, and the next day I feel energized, virtuous and creative. Other times - and with no specific difference that I can discern - the next day I'll ache all over and spend half the day in bed. And sometimes it makes no difference at all.

Go figure.
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