Teaching myself to run again

Today I went to the gym and told myself I’d do what I could on the treadmill. I found that whatever this thing is, it’s still happening, only it isn’t quite what I thought. I don’t have the problem upon exertion, but after I decide I’m tired and try to slow down. That is when suddenly I feel like I cannot breathe.

I didn’t know whether I should stop suddenly, which actually seemed more comfortable, than gradually cooling off. Then, I realized that cooling off is what I need. I only have to teach my heart and lungs how to do this properly. So I practiced, over and over again. I realized that my system had learned during the course of a treadmill run. Now, I can slow down without losing my breath. I’m not sure what climbing a hill will be like but I will find out soon enough. This area is very hilly indeed!

I say run, but really it wasn’t a run. I can’t run more than .06 miles at a time. Now that is about 1/2 of 1/10th of a mile. One lap around the track is 1/4 of a mile. I can’t do that. I can only do about 1/4 of a lap, then stop or slow down, then, run another .06 of a mile. I did better than yesterday, though. Tomorrow I will run either on the treadmill or on the track. I know in my heart that I have to do this to stay alive, or to get to a point where I’m not worried that I won’t.

4 thoughts on “Teaching myself to run again”

  1. Cooling off after a cardiovascular workout is as important as warming up, if not more so. And the older we get, the more important it gets.
    The challenge of getting back in shape after an injury or illness always seems so unfair. I had to do it over and over again when I was sick with ulcerative colitis. The damned prednisone I had to take for it was almost as bad as the illness, and it sucked the strength right out of me again and again every time I had to increase the dose during a bloody flare-up. Now, 25 years after I got off that crap and 13 since my last intestinal surgery, I’m facing still more surgery after a very painful couple nights in the hospital recently and I’m not looking forward to weeks of enforced idleness, but I don’t want to risk popping the staples I’ll have in my belly. I’ll know more about the surgery in July if I don’t have another emergency blockage before then. I’m back to 90 minutes on my self-propelled treadmill every other day, but I’m not risking any sit-ups, that’s for sure. I should have known there was something wrong when I passed blood in my ostomy bag after hard set of them recently.
    But I know you’ll be back running in no time, Julie. You’ve got to be the worst exercise junkie I know (and that’s not meant as a put-down. Quite the opposite, actually.)

    1. Aw, that’s so nice of you to say. I can’t believe you put up with 25 years on Prednisone! I know people who had to take that. When we get old and grumpy we have health problems, that’s for sure! You’re right about cooling off. I don’t know why it stresses out my heart so much. I’m hoping that yesterday’s “practice” helped teach my heart to do the right thing when cooling off. I think being off my feet for a month wasn’t good for me…but I had to get that fracture healed.

    1. I think I’m doing better than the average 61 year old. But I want to live to see 65. My motive is that once I turn 65 I’ll get to ride the bus for free. I think a lot of good things are in store for me. I guess that is what keeps me going.

Feedback and comments welcome!