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.