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.

Shakeout run postponed

One of my favorite types of runs is the “Day after race shakeout”, when I go out easy and rid my muscles of built-up lactic acid. Weather conditions were better this morning than they were yesterday, and I looked forward to a few recovery miles. I had a rough night’s sleep and woke up with sinus headache this morning. These headaches are annoying, because they make me feel draggy and tired. I considered downgrading my neighborhood run to an easy treadmill run, then realized that skipping my workout was the best choice of all.

I’ve never liked taking medication, but when these headaches come the only thing that helps is the “Sudafed” cure. That’s 60 mg of pseudoephedrine, along with a dose of ibuprofen. When the cure takes, it’s a night and day improvement. It took a second dose later in the day to eradicate the pounding and dizziness and I’m feeling much better now.

I read recently that runners should take a day off after a race for every mile they ran. That seems extreme, but one day’s rest after a race makes good sense. I’ve just preferred to do my easy runs instead. Now that I have no time pressure to make my train in the morning, I can go on longer runs during the week. I will hopefully sleep better tonight and make up some mileage on Monday.  

Incomplete recovery is better than none

Yesterday’s troubles continued through the night, and I got to bed early in hopes on sleeping off my pounding headache. I woke up in the middle of the night feeling no better, so I took some pseudoephedrine and Advil and went back to bed. When I got up, my headache was far less noticeable and the heavy fatigue I’d carried most of Wednesday was gone. Still, I knew better than to try a run. I learned something from yesterday.

Headaches of this type are really debilitating and, when they finally leave, the world feels so much better. But even with that improvement, I wasn’t out of the woods. I felt well enough to go into the office but some slight dizziness and a mild headache remained. Sudafed saved the day, but it wasn’t a complete victory. Another dose this morning brought further improvement.

I’m not sure what’s behind these headaches but the only way to get rid of them seems to be a combination of sleep, NSAIDs, and pseudoephedrine. Missing a day’s workout, like I did today, would normally bother me because it will make it harder to reach my weekly goal of 20 miles. But an article from Tuesday’s WSJ.com sent to me by FS, says that (for older endurance athletes) it’s better to keep weekly mileage below that number. Older endurance athletes that run 7:30 paces or faster that is. So I guess I’m good with my 20.

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.

No power leads to unexpected power

Note to Sports Authority: sale items are supposed to cost less

Today’s run (street): 3.2 miles

I worked from home this morning which allowed me to sleep in a little later. Sort of. At around 4:00 AM our house alarm started bleeping, indicating a loss of battery power. I noticed that the digital clocks had no display and that we were having a power outage. I went back to sleep for an hour, but when I got up for good, I was suffering a bad headache. The power had come back on, so I had a couple of strong cups of coffee and headed out for a neighborhood run .

The humidity was low at 6:30 and the temperatures were in the 60’s, so my run was pleasant. I started slowly because my headache was sapping some energy. I picked up the pace and covered a little more than 5K. I was moving steadily but it didn’t feel especially fast. I lamented the fact that I hardly ever manage paces faster than mid-9:00 these days and I expected today’s to be even slower.

I finished my run and was surprised to see that I almost hit 9:00 overall. It may be that I’d had about an hour between getting up and running or that the weather helped me. Probably a little of both. Either way it was nice to break out of my normal metric and show some better performance.

I had much to do between 11:00 and 5:00 and, throughout the day, I had periods where my headache made me want to lie down and take a nap. Ibuprofen helped a little but, once again, it was Sudafed that did the trick. Pseudoephedrine is wonderful thing. I take it sparingly and I’m always happy when I do.

At one point this afternoon, we stopped into Sports Authority to get my son a new pair of water shoes. I’m very disappointed in their decision to drop brands in favor expanding their floor space for more Nike and Under Armor clothing. I guess people like that, but I don’t. My son and I were amused to see this great deal on Adidas running shoes in the kid’s section (above). I think their marketing people need to rethink both their merchandise lines and their pricing

Sudafed, insomnia and a surprisingly good run

Today’s run (street): 3.4 miles

I got up early this morning but didn’t get out for today’s run until almost 1:00 PM. I had a rough night’s sleep, probably because I’d taken pseudoephedrine before I’d gone to bed. Sudafed is a great decongestant but it tends to keep me up at night. By 4:50 AM I knew I wasn’t going to fall back to sleep and I considered going for a run with my headlamp. However, I was feeling the sleep debt and opted for coffee instead.

Before long, our morning’s schedule took priority and I considered just taking Monday as a rest day. I usually skip my workout on Mondays but vacations can change things. Tomorrow’s schedule starts early so I questioned whether I’d be able to get out at all on Tuesday. Despite feeling a little tired I changed into my running gear and headed outside, targeting about 30 minutes to run.

I’m happy to say that my sinus headache is gone but I thought I’d have a tough time between the late start time, hot sun and high humidity. The first couple of minutes felt harder than normal but by mile one I’d literally hit my stride. From there I cruised through the rest of my run, taking a different set of roads than I normally follow on a weekday run.

I can’t explain why today’s run went so well but I will give some credit to my new stride and strike. It’s always nice to have a good run when you expect to struggle. It’s a far better experience than when it goes the other way.

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.