Going horizontal with vertigo

Verti, please go

Today’s run (treadmill): 3.25 miles
Last Sunday’s run (treadmill): 3.2 miles

This has been a dizzying week for a couple of reasons. One is that I have so much going on at the office that I’m doing five minute meetings in the hallway on my way to other meetings. The other reason it’s been dizzying is because I’ve been dizzy. About once a year (last time was in March) I get a bad case of sinus related vertigo that puts me horizontal, at least for a little while. Aside from the feeling that the room is spinning, there are no concerning effects.

My bout with this annoyance started on Wednesday night. I had no idea it was coming, but right after dinner, I started feeling woozy. It isn’t unpleasant, but it does get in the way of walking a straight line across the room. I felt much better on Thursday morning but after a couple of dizzy spells during my morning coffee, I elected to work from home. I would normally run on a work-from-home day, but I didn’t want to take any chances on the treadmill.

Today was a different story. I worked from home again because that’s what I do on Fridays. Between a restful night’s sleep and some sinus medicine, I was getting back to normal. I decided to do a treadmill run. Although the streets are clear, the sidewalks are still snowed under and I didn’t feel comfortable without that escape route.

I expected to struggle on the treadmill but ended up doing okay. No dizziness issues and the running felt easy. I suspect that had to do with my moderate pace and the fact that I had two consecutive nights of sleeping eight hours. That doesn’t happen too often. With the music station playing some decent songs and a calmer day ahead, my workout seemed to go by quickly.

I don’t like admitting this, but my last few treadmill runs have gone very well. I think we’re due for spring-like weather next week and that might get me back on the road. This weekend, I’m pretty sure I’ll be running inside. But with the Monday holiday, at least I’ll get an extra chance for a run.

I’m vertigo-ing to take Sudefed next time

Once again, pseudoephedrine saves the day

Today’s run (street): 3.75 miles

I had a very nice Saturday until about 8:00 PM last night when I started feeling dizzy. I have very sensitive sinuses and big changes in temperature tend to affect me. It’s usually in the form of a pounding headache. Occasionally, the only effect will be a feeling of light-headedness, which is far more tolerable. Unfortunately, the dizziness sometimes provokes it’s evil twin, nausea, and then it’s no fun at all.

By 8:30 I could tell that this would be more than a passing thing. I considered using nasal spray or taking a decongestant, but I was also starting to feel sick. Instead, I headed upstairs to go to bed in hopes that I could sleep it off.

Today is the start of daylight savings time, and when I woke up, I thought I’d slept until 7:00 AM. Actually I did, but my internal clock thought it was 6:00 AM. Still, I managed to get more than eight hours sleep and all signs of last night’s vertigo were gone. I was concerned about overdoing it today, and decided to keep my run short.

The weather was pleasant and I dressed correctly for a change. I’d taken Sudefed when I got up in hopes of warding off a recurrence of sinus trouble. I expected to feel tired on the road. Instead, the decongestant had the opposite effect. My stride felt loose and my energy level was higher than it’s been in weeks. I felt so good I wondered if pseudoephedrine is a banned substance.

I stayed in my neighborhood, but mixed up my route to keep things somewhat interesting. Unlike many runs, I wasn’t thinking about how much more time or distance I had to cover. I was really enjoying being outside on a beautiful (if humid) pseudo-spring day. I never looked at my watch during the run, and was surprised to see that I’d exceeded my three mile target by 20%.

I didn’t get in all the workouts I’d hoped for over the week, but I had some challenging days in the office that kept me late a couple of days. This week should be better and if I’m able to stay on schedule I’ll aim to add a Wednesday and/or Thursday workout.

Saved again by Sudafed

The little red miracle

Tuesday’s run (treadmill): 25 minutes
Wednesday’s run (treadmill): 25 minutes

Hi, remember me? It’s been a tough couple of days and I have not had the chance to post since Monday. I was in all day industry meetings over the past few days where I presented to various groups. I needed to prepare for those presentations on the train, so I wasn’t able to write my posts.

Due to the rain, I was confined to the treadmill on Tuesday and Wednesday. Yesterday morning, I used Virtually Active throughout the entire workout. The package I bought ($7.99) was of the Pacific Northwest and the video showed a combination of trail, mountain and city running. I liked certain things about it, but I wished I could raise the position of the iPad. The placement was lower than the view I would have during an actual run.

I’m not sure if the video had anything to do with it, but I felt dizziness throughout the morning and this turned into an intense headache by noon. I had just finished my talk when I realized that I probably had a sinus infection and needed to take Sudafed with pseudoephedrine. I caught the next train home, took my red pill and went to bed.

Pseudoephedrine is a bit of a miracle drug, at least it is for me. I felt good this morning but I had some residual dizziness and decided to forgo my run today. I think that was a good decision. I’m considering a lunchtime run in Central Park tomorrow and I’ll see how I feel at the end of the day. With the rain behind us and sunny conditions ahead, I’m hoping I’ll be up to it.

The myth of the morning person

Although I struggled with a bad sinus headache most of the weekend, I did manage to get in a couple of good workouts. As planned, I ran a set of intervals on Saturday and then did a slow, easy run on Sunday morning. My headache caused some dizziness, and that was further exacerbated after viewing Madonna’s Superbowl Halftime show. Despite the close game and my hopes for the Pats, I went to bed before 9:00. It was the right thing to do because I feel much better this morning.

Last week, my wife had breakfast with a friend that she hasn’t seen in a while. Their discussion turned to exercise and my wife mentioned that she runs on the treadmill first thing every morning. Her friend said, “Oh, that’s easy for you, you’re a morning person.” My wife responded, “True, but is anyone really a morning person at 5:00 AM?”

That’s the thing about workouts. It’s not the time of day that you do them. It’s simply that you do them. A morning person will probably do better with a morning workout, and conversely, a night person will do better going for a run after dinner. But being a morning person doesn’t make it any easier to roll out of bed in the early hours and hit the treadmill or the road. What it really takes is a commitment to staying healthy. That can work for people at any time of the day.

Way off base

Today’s run (street): 5 miles

I had great intentions for this weekend’s training but things didn’t quite work out. A slow start and an early Saturday schedule forced me to put off my run until later. Unfortunately the day became very busy and by late afternoon I was feeling unusually tired. I considered a run before dinner but was concerned I’d be doing more harm than good, especially since I’d planned a long base run for Sunday at Bethpage. I ended up resting instead and, by evening, I was feeling exhausted.

I woke up in the middle of the night with a sinus headache and hoped that I could sleep it off. I went back to bed but I felt even worse by morning. My usual response to these headaches is coffee and Sudafed along with either ibuprofen or aspirin. That generally does the trick but by 8:00 AM I was still hurting and I knew a long run at Bethpage was out. I couldn’t conceive of going an entire weekend without a run but I wasn’t in any shape to get outside. I went one more step and used a decongestant nasal spray followed by a return to bed for a forty minute nap. Happily, when I woke up my headache was gone so I put on my running clothes and headed outside.

I knew I wouldn’t cover my planned 8 miles but I did want to have something to show for the weekend. Owing to my tenuous recovery, I started at an easy pace and followed a route that took me though some streets that I haven’t covered in some time. I felt great for the first two miles but by the third I was beginning to waver. I decided to concentrate on my form and my mid-foot landing and hoped for a “second wind” that would allow me to cover a couple of more miles before I finished. I did recover and by the end I was running a decent, if relaxed, pace. I felt almost as strong at mile 5 as I did after the first mile. So far, my headache has not returned and though I fell far short of my planned 12 mile weekend, I am happy with the way things worked out.