The climb up to Ft. Mason
See the inhaler in my hand?
Today I did my first 11 miler (actually 10.8) of this training session and I think it went pretty well. I did a combination of regular walking and slow racewalking , finishing in just under 3 hours , which is just about right for this distance on a slow walk.
My body has become so conditioned to walking long distances, that even when I’m more short of breath than usual, I can still knock out a 10+ mile walk. I become so focused on what I’m doing, that having somewhat labored breathing doesn’t seem to bother me. Its not so much the dyspnea that slows me down, rather, it’s the bronchospasm which sometimes follows a long walk that cause big problems for me. And that’s exactly what happen today. The walk was easy as pie, but the aftermath might land me in the big house.

I was able to get through the walk with only 6 hits off my inhaler, about 2 puffs for every hour of walking, but by the time I made it back to my car, the puffer wasn’t cutting it anymore and I had to take a nebulizer treatment as I drove home. No biggie, that’s what usually happens after a long walk, but as the day progressed I got increasingly more wheezy and my PFs started to take a nose dive. Currently, I’m taking neb treatments almost every hour and only achieving minimal relief. I popped some extra ativan to take the edge off and will try to sleep propped up. If I get any tighter and/or my PF drops any lower…well, you know the drill. I’ll either turn around in the next few hours, or I’ll end up back on steroids or….lets not even go there.

So, for the year as a whole, it looks like I’ll be ending at just under 850 miles ,which is way down from previous years ,but probably not that bad when you consider I was hospitalized a record 5 times. It still averages out to more than 70 miles a month, and in total , more than 3,000 miles since I began this journey back in 2005. Walking has improved my health and made me stronger in so many ways. Now , if there was just a way I could do these long walks without making myself critically ill.
I don’t know about you , but I can’t say I’ll miss 2008 . Here’s to an easier, more gentle 2009 !

I leave you with more pictures of me and Winston.

Me and my buddy
I love my little flat faced kitty
Check out the expression on Winston's face after I plant one on him

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4 thoughts on “I eat 10 milers for Breakfast

  1. Sus says:

    Aw, Steve, No Way!
    Rats to this-you have been doing brilliantly!
    Rooting for you, pal-load those lungs, and please make sure you see in the New Year, AT HOME!

    HNY to you both- Sus and Jools xx

    PS: I’ve managed to get off the stuff again, am doing well for me, and surviving on Christmas Adenaline making Merriment here, oh, and lots and lots of extra nebs 😉

  2. Joey says:

    Oh no! You were doing so well! I’m still on the evil candy and I hope you don’t have to join me, but it would be nice for you to see the New Year in at home and not from the local prison cell…

    Thinking of you and sending healing hugs


    Happy New Year to you too!

  3. Steve says:

    Thanks everyone for checking in. Im doing somewhat better today. Had an incredibly long good breathing streak ( 79 days), for which I am grateful. Hopefully this downer is just a blip and I’ll make it to 2009 without another hospital stay.

    Hope you all stay healthy as well!

  4. Tammy says:

    Oh no! I really really hope you continue to do better and can avoid the hospital :(.

    Great job on your walk!

    I have some very very small (miniscule) idea of what it is like to be handicapped by your body – my IT band has been bugging me a lot, and it’ so frustrating to have my body get in the way of what I want to do. I thought of you and how your lungs handicap you every single day and I suddenly had a lot more understanding of just how hard that must be.

    BTW, I love that you are advertising Kiva in your sidebar. Awesome organization.

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