[Rowing Machine] 2019: Week 44 {220.5} “Rowing Versus Headaches”

I’ve had headaches on and off for the past month. I don’t want to row while having a headache because the source of my headaches are usually tension based. It could be a lower back thing – I did fall onto my tailbone on my rowing machine a few years ago – or it could be a mental stress thing. The problem is, for the next few weeks, I’m just stuck with headaches and not rowing consistently.

Everything I can think of to remedy the problem fails.

I have access to ibuprofen, which is like emptying a lake one cup of water at a time. I talked to an eye doctor that gave me general advice about migraines. Diet, hydration, and other factors can cause migraines. Those aren’t my major source of headaches, though, and those I can usually clear up by just not being in bright lights, relaxing my eyes, or wearing sunglasses for the short time before those clear – because they’re not migraines. I’ve had one or two day-ending migraines before, and this ain’t that.

I have appointments with another doctor and a neurologist soon.

When I last had bad headaches years ago, I eventually had to take three prednisone, and by the first one, I felt like my life had fundamentally changed for the better in such a way that I hadn’t had headaches for years to that severity. Headaches, for me, are like being like Charlie from Flowers for Algernon, or if you don’t know that reference, when I get headaches I actually have impaired mental facilities. I can’t think straight. It’s like having a vocabulary of English words then cutting out a letter or two.

I can’t sleep that well.

I might get about six hours of sleep at best, no matter what I try to fix the situation. Going to bed earlier just means I lay in bed for one hour until I realize I’m not asleep. Mentally or physically exerting myself would help, except the two need to work in tandem, otherwise you run into situations where you’re too tired to sleep or your mind races through the thousands of thoughts it hadn’t processed yet.

I forget the last time I rowed.

I could look at my phone to see when I took photos of my set, but I’m sure it was almost a week ago now, if not enough days for me to forget. I really can’t understand why this is so much of an issue that can’t be addressed. If I need to study medical textbooks on headaches to understand what to do to fix the issue, great, I can then translate that out for greater audiences. It just seems like there should be more fixes than just taking some mild over-the-counter medication, some kind of mild sedative, or a high power steroid that can wreck your body if taken incorrectly.

Are headaches a physical limiter on progress?

I don’t get headaches when I write, more when I’m not writing, so it could be a matter of my brain trying to process information that it sees as irrelevant. Or I should addendum that by saying that I only write until I stop due to a headache, so I might pause midway through a sentence to look around my surroundings or do something other than let the ache of my headache control me, unless I’m writing about the experience of having a headache for documentation purposes.

I wonder if there’s a way to better manage my lifestyle.

I have trouble with moderation. I can write for hours on end, only stopping when the time-frame has expired, I get an interruption [no queue for an interruption here], or I feel like I’ve made my point. That might be the addictive side of my personality, which, many great writers have addictive personalities. You have to be a little crazy to want to do something like this as opposed to watch television shows, play videogames, or enjoy your life, I suppose. Those things just, honestly, bore me after a while. It’s tedious for me to sit through a show where I either know the bit that’s going to happen because it’s poorly written, or even when it is well written and enjoyable, just not really being the “full-meal deal” of entertainment for me.

My head’s been fairly clear all day today.

I also haven’t rowed or done any physical exercise other than standing around for a while to stretch my back. I’m arching my back so there’s less pressure on my lower back and I can definitely feel a change. By this essay’s publication, I will have gone to my first float tank session in over six months. That should help with any lower back issues, and if it does, I’ll have more evidence to see if I can get a medical referral or something. The float tank I like has increased their prices since I last loaded up for floating during certain hours, but, I believe they take insurance, so that might be useful and something I can try on a more frequent basis.

All that said, I don’t quite like this rowing respite.

I haven’t stopped rowing frequently due to laziness. It’s just I don’t want to cause a headache by going at my normal pace or even a slower pace, because even when I go at a slower pace, there’s still a chance I can get a headache hours later. If it’s diet and hydration, well, I can only drink as much water as I can, and I can try more, but then it’s tricky to do so at work because breaks are more of a carefully monitored, regulated activity, rather than something where you can take a quick pit-stop and return. So it’s almost like, through all of this, it seems like my headaches are due to external pressures from doing things I don’t want to rather than what I need to do…

How can I change those factors more in my favor?

Quotes: None.
Sources: My fitness experiences.
This week’s weight: 220.5
Last week’s weight: 214.5
Difference: This 6-pound increase inspired me to get back into working on my Rowing Machine Sheets Supplementarium. I’d been skipping that for two weeks.
Inspirations: Just a 20-minute assessment into how I’m doing to figure out what’s been preventing me from being able to row or get over these headaches.
Related: Past weekly column entries.
Picture: Scribbing a headache over the ROW logo.
Written On: October 26th, 2019 [20 minutes, from 2:10am to 2:30am, Wordcounter]
Last Edited: October 27th, 2019 [First draft; final draft for the Internet, other than one typo.]
My big goal is writing. My most important goal is writing "The Story." All other goals should work toward that central goal. My proudest moment is the most recent time I overcame some fear, which should have been today. I'm a better zombie than I was yesterday. I'm not better than you and you're not better than me. Let's strive to be better every day.