50/2/50: Days 42, 43: Running out of healthy body parts. The dangers of too much exercise, too soon, too fast.

Posted on Posted in 50-2-50, FITNESS, FOOD, Vegtosterone Blog
Sometimes the body is willing, but the mind…not so much

I decided to be a weekend warrior this weekend, and well, lets just say, “we lost a lot of good men out there.”

On Friday, I did some HIT strength training, and in an interesting twist, I actually did my “reps” while in my office.  (As a reminder, HIT or High Intensity Training suggests that just 20 second of vigorous exercise, three times a day and three times a week will give you most of the benefits your looking for in exercise.)

I’ve over simplified all this, so for god’s sake, look it up; but you get the point.

More to my point is the fact that the attraction of HIT is that it’s fast and can be squeezed in anytime and anywhere. And while I’m not a time management nut; I am drawn to this because it leaves little room for excuses.

Now, of course, I don’t have a weight set in my office, and I don’t want to join a gym; so I shut my office door and did some push ups and inverted chair presses (sit in a chair, brace yourself with your arms, slip your butt off the chair and lower your but to the ground then raise it back up to the chair). I did as many as I could until I could do no more and repeated that three times. My heart was racing for 30 minutes afterwards.

So, far, so good.

 muhammad ali, on jump ropeOn Saturday, I bought a jump rope.  This is great exercise that boxers traditionally used to stay in shape.

In high school, the coaches who saw me shooting hoops in the gym referred to my “jump” shot as a “nickel jump,” meaning that one could scarcely slide a nickel under my feet when I jumped. So, you can imagine this didn’t go well.

Several attempts to coordinate the rope under my “skipping” feet last about 10 minutes when my shins began to shatter. (Remember, I’m still a good 20 pounds overweight, and I have no feeling in either foot due to nerve damage as a result of MS.)

Unrepentant, I took the dog for a walk, and ran 4 wind sprints. On the last, I felt my Achilles tighten…painfully.

By that evening, I had to walk gingerly and my Achilles was tender to the touch.

By now, the aches of my “intense” upper body conditioning of the day before was becoming evident as I had trouble raising my arms above shoulder height.

Most men would take the hint, but I decided to take the dog for a leisurely, an hour walk on Sunday morning. By the end of which, my right foot felt like a lump of cement that had hardened into a block to which my shoe struggled to conform. My left foot had swollen to the point that the shoe laces could not be tightened. Sunday night, upon taking off my socks, I noticed the left foot was red at its extremities.

What does all this mean?

I’m not sure, except clearly an aging body has many obstacles in its path toward getting in shape and they are not all mental. The reality is that I am turning 50 in a few days, and no matter how “young” I try to feel…I am not. So, we have to ease into things, dial back the ambition and, perhaps, look for lower impact alternatives to my wind-sprints and jump ropes.

So, if you see a used spin cycle on Craig’s List, let me know.


Vitals: Weight holding between 213 and 214.

Diet: My wife had a small catering gig last week which featured portobello mushrooms. She usually buys a bit more than she needs, and this time, she went well overboard, so I learned all about stuffing portobellos, as that is all we ate almost every day last week. I’ll share those recipes in the food section in the future.

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