After 3 solid weeks of being sick, I’m finally feeling better. Yesterday I would have told you I was feeling 95%, but today it’s back down to 90% because of some recurrent and annoying post-nasal drip that’s giving me a sore throat. It’s always two steps forward and one step back, isn’t it?
I finally went to urgent care on New Year’s Eve, and the nurse practitioner was lovely. She said what I had was definitely going around – not the flu, thankfully – but that it basically needed to run its course of 7-10 days. I was only Day 6 at that point, so she sent me home with cough medication, nighttime cough syrup with codeine, and an inhaler, and told me to come back if it wasn’t better by Day 10. She said running probably wouldn’t make anything worse, and since New Year’s Day was going to be so sunny and warm, to try an easy run.
So on New Year’s Day, around noon, I went out for a run. I decided to run based on heart rate and nothing else, and did my best to keep my heart rate under 165, which is roughly 90% of my max heart rate. That meant running at a snail’s pace, essentially power-walking. But I hardly coughed during my run and it was SO beautiful out that I did 2 loops around the reservoir and back home, for a total of 4 miles.
I went to work on January 2nd, lasted about 3 hours before my boss sent me home, and basically went back to bed until my next urgent care appointment on Day 10, which was Friday.
I saw a different doctor, and he felt strongly that because the inhaler wasn’t helping and my boogers were bright green, that I had a severe sinus infection – and that post-nasal drip was the cause of my terrible cough. He switched me from the codeine (which I honestly hated) to promethazine for nighttime cough relief, and prescribed a z-pack of antibiotics.
I felt well enough on Sunday – after 48 hours of the antibiotics – to go out for a 10-mile run on my own. It wasn’t pretty, but I got it done. I felt good for the first 4 miles, OK for 5 and 6, and just plain terrible for 7-10. I debated calling an Uber multiple times but instead settled on a flat route that meant I’d finish a few miles from home. I finished at CVS, bought tissues and chocolate milk, and then called that Uber to take me the final 1.75 miles home.
On Monday, I had to rest. I had no energy. Sunday’s run zapped what I had gained from the antibiotics. Finally by Tuesday, I felt well enough to do a 10-minute kettlebell workout and yoga. I’ve done yoga every day this week and it’s definitely been improving my overall mood and making my feel lighter – both physically and mentally.
I went out for a fast but short 3-mile run on Wednesday after work + more yoga. On Thursday, I joined my Dana-Farber teammates for my first Lir run of the season. We meet at the bar, Lir, on Boylston Street (very close to the finish line), and do an out & back on the course or take the train out to Woodland and run the final 9ish miles of the course, including all of the Newton Hills. Most people start that in February, so I did 6 miles with my running regulars – Jess, Marny, and a new teammate Amanda. I felt strong and it got me really motivated for Saturday’s long run!
On Friday, my new “take it easy” day, I woke up sore from Thursday’s run so I spent lots of time stretching and foam rolling, and did yet another yoga class in my living room. I had a salt bagel for breakfast, hydrated like a fool but also added salty snacks so I didn’t end up overdoing it, had a salad with grilled chicken for lunch and pasta with broccoli and turkey sausage for dinner, and even a single glass of wine! So basically, I did everything right, all week long, and even told Jess that I was going to have “the best run ever” on Saturday morning. So did I? More on that next post!