Wednesday, March 13, 2013

The Road to Recovery and Tricky Numbers

Things are looking up!  This past Friday I went for my first follow up appointment since getting diagnosed with pneumonia a week ago today.  That was a bit of a downer, she said I sounded no better and to continue (at least partial) bed rest.  Over the weekend I did my best to lie low and despite going forward with Marek's 4th birthday party on Sunday, I still managed to get plenty of rest.  I hardly took pictures at the party but here are a couple.

Happy Birthday buddy!
Dishing out cupcakes with Vader, storm troopers and light sabers
After the party I headed for bed to rest for a while before dinner.  I can't tell you how much eating I'd been doing last week.  I kind of reeled it in on Monday but it's still not ideal.  Without exercise I'm not going to get away with this for long.  Anyway, I'm rambling.

So I went today for my second follow up appointment and the doctor said my lungs are sounding better.  I am 50% recovered and she expects that within 3 weeks my lungs will be back at 100%.  We had a little Q&A:

Me:  Can I start exercising again, something light like walking?
Doc:  You can certainly go for walks as long as you don't get winded.  You might be surprised at how easily you get winded so just take it easy.  As long as you're not doing any intense cardio, nothing that causes you to breathe heavy, you're fine.
Me:  Score!  (in my head anyway).

Me:  What about weight lifting?
Doc:  Weight lifting is fine since you aren't using your lungs much.  Again, as long as you don't get winded you're fine.  If you find you have unusually sore muscles later that's a sign you're not getting enough oxygen to them so just cut back.

Me:  I'm registered for a 12k on Sunday, can I walk that if I want to?
Doc:  Sure, as long as you take it easy.

Me:  I'm registered for a half-marathon on April 7th (3.5 weeks away), what do you think?
Doc:  If your 3-week follow up chest x-ray is clear (on April 3rd) you can do whatever you want.  And I expect it will be clear barring anything unusual. 
Me:  Double score!  Yippee, yay, woo-hoo!!!! (all in my head, of course).  Thank you.

Whew!  That's about the best thing I could have heard.  And you know I got my little ass to the gym ASAP.  I walked on the treadmill at 3.0 mph for 10 minutes and then hit the weights.  I decided to do a short full body workout so I did one set of a few things like pushups, lunges, squats, seated rows, bicep curls, arnolds, head crushers, pullups (I did 4!), a few other things I can't recall and then a few sets of ab work.  It was so good to be back in the gym, I think I would've been happy to sit in the corner and read.  Oh, and when I'd walked in the door I had the chance to talk shop with a new member (and her mom) who is on her own weight loss journey, it was very motivating (Hi Kali!).

So one last thing...the scale.  The scale is trying to tell me "everything's fine" with a weight of 135 this morning.  Can you believe that?  But my body fat has crept up to 27%.  Can you lose that much muscle in a week?  Yep, according to the trainer at the gym it's totally possible.  Check out these numbers:

138.8 pounds with 25% body fat = 34.7 pounds of fat, 104.1 pounds lean body mass
135 pounds with 27% body fat = 36.45 pounds of fat, 98.55 pounds lean body mass.

So at 135 I weigh less but I'm carrying more fat - I've lost 3.8 pounds overall but I've gained 1.75 pounds of fat (that's 7 sticks of butter!).  And my lean body mass has gone down by over 5 pounds.  Oh man this is depressing.  I want my 25% body fat back, stat.  Patient you must be, young Padawan. 

This is, by the way, the same phenomenon that happens when you start to fall off the wagon but convince yourself everything is alright because the scale is still telling you good things.  I wrote a blog post about that, Fool Me Once.  But the scale and I are not new friends and I'm on to all her lies.  I know that despite it saying 135, all is not well in my body and that I need to both rein in the eating and, when I can, get back to my exercise routine.  Mainly it's the eating because exercise (knock on wood) comes pretty easy to me these days. 

One last, one last was a beautiful day today.  The doctor gave me good news, the sun was glorious, I got to go back to the gym, and my spirit was alive and soaring.  It's been a while since I've had a day like this.  I'm not back yet, but I'm on the road that I know will get me there.  Hallelujah!


  1. Glad you got some good news! Continue to take it easy and you will be better in no time!

  2. It was great to see you, too :)! Hope you continue to feel better!

    1. Thanks! A little setback this afternoon, feeling tired as heck, but hopefully still on the mend.

  3. I had pneumonia several years ago ... It's miserable. I think you'll be surprised at how long it takes to feel "normal" again. Hang in there and keep your chin up!

  4. Wonderful news. Pneumonia is no joke! Take care and heal up fast.

    1. Thanks DeeDee!! I now know, no joke at all. Whew!

  5. i've been meaning to ask...what are arnolds?

    1. A type of shoulder press, check this out:


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