[Rowing Machine] 2020: Week 18 {211.5} “Unfortunately Folded Up”

In the sudden rush to build my work-from-home area weeks ago, I had to sacrifice my home gym’s sacred space. What space was once dedicated just to rowing, which I could occasionally relinquish when inviting guests over to sit at the dining room table, now must also be shared with boxes so I can stand while I work for the unforeseen future. Because of this and current events, I’ve been having trouble burning off calories.

I’m writing this neck-deep into my first serious headache since February 12.

I think I’ve sorted out the muscle tension in my spine that riddled my head with multitudinous headache symptoms, all of which I’ve outlined in the Tripping On The American Healthcare System series: pains behind my right eye, particularly, along with neck pain and pangs in the upper parts of my brain. I’ve done enough chin tucks to where my perhaps protruded neck popped back into place. After the second loud one, I felt the pressure decrease in my head.

I haven’t felt like rowing in the past two days and this is probably why.

The symptoms started off slow with just a mild pang that I worked through until yesterday morning when, fresh off vocational work with an exuberance to do some fun avocational or even recreational activities, I booted up everything, and I felt exhausted. I think what had started all this was that I had pushed myself too much for too long. I stayed up too late when I shouldn’t have. I gave out too much empathy when I shouldn’t have.

I didn’t get much sleep and when I did, it was at the wrong hours.

Normally for Rowing essays, I’ll write more about fitness itself, but because we’re living in strange times for being able even to get out and go for walks, so I’ll write about the walk I went to at the park since in our state we can currently go out on walks for exercise purposes. I went out for the purpose of taking photos to document the changes to our current surroundings. I parked at the parking lot of the community gym I briefly went to between stopping use of my Concept2 and my current rower. Other parks have apparently closed parking lots, but I haven’t been getting out as much as I should to go explore those areas.

Primarily because I don’t want to get sick.

I wear gloves and be physically distant, but still, what we know about COVID-19 isn’t enough to feel as confident as we once could months back about going out and walking around. Much of that is in my head, I know, but it’s certainly felt safer just staying in the apartment-mansion. Due to its space constrictions, however, I can’t fold down the rower somewhere without shuffling around many other items. I’ll work toward clearing out some space over the next few days, since I fully admit that having the rower folded up is a convenient excuse when I’m not feeling my best.

The park was nice and I walked about a mile.

There were new signs up about how parts of the park were closed, but there were still people out walking. It felt almost normal. I should go out more often while I can, because in other states and in other countries, probably well past this essay’s publication citizens are on finable lockdown, unless they have some essential purpose for being out and about. I can, then, count myself lucky to be able to go out and unlucky enough to be able to get sick if I do the wrong thing.

My right hamstring was sore by the time I returned to my car.

The dog park was open but no one was there. I waved at some people and said hello to others. On the drive back, I drove up and down some streets to see what was open and what was closed. Coffee shops were still open. A local computer repair shop was open, along with most restaurants, but my local Gamestop, controversially resisting orders nationwide to close in the worst possible unethical and immoral ways, was closed. A grocery store was about as busy as it always is, otherwise, everything else seemed closed.

These, of course, are reports from one month ago.

By this essay’s publication, stores should be back open and life is predicted to be back to normal, but I doubt it. Once we have a cure for COVID-19, then yes, life can return back to normal. Until then, if I feel well enough, I’ll go out and document how it was like, if I don’t feel well enough but feel adequate, I’ll put in a light rowing set, and if not, like I felt yesterday, I’ll sleep. There is not one sane reason for me to push myself past exhaustion right now.

I could have justified calling out sick today.

Were it not for the work-from-home situation, I might have, too, since I was exhausted. I know I am still physically in decent shape. I didn’t run a fever when I checked my temperature before writing this essay. I just need to be careful not to eat too many calories when I’m feeling the victim of headaches or fatigue. Some food is good to get proper nourishment, but as I looked over my vitamin container, I realized I hadn’t been taking all of my vitamins!

Of course, I’d feel under the weather with all those factors.

I’m not here to lambast myself. Rather I wanted to show how easy it is to let things like all of the above compound into not just headaches, not just weight gain, but overall lifestyle degradation because maybe similar things have happened or will happen to you? What is important, then, is to plant this as a reference point and say “no more! I will not give in to these vicissitudes again!”

I’ll start with resting, then figuring out my rower’s placement, then go out exploring.

Quotes: None.
Sources: My fitness experiences.
This week’s weight: 211.5
Last week’s weight: 214.5
Difference: As is the ritual now, the pre-pee weight was 214. I’m now, officially, at my lowest weight since I was 200 pounds back around 2009. I credit my calorie counting throughout what would be stressful situations. I haven’t been able to row since the 18th. I’m on medical leave now, I’ll be going back to PT since the issue is with my lower back. Since I wrote this section on April 26, rather than the rest which I wrote on April 03, you can see by comparing this section to the next section, that counting calories works for me.
Inspirations: I’m going to be weighing myself casually more often since I haven’t been great about tracking calories. My dietitian, who I’ve postponed visiting until this COVID-19 situation is more under control, recommended a calorie counting app, Cronometer, that I may start using more than my rowing sheet. We’ll see.
Related: Past weekly column entries. Other Sober Living essays and Tripping On [The American Healthcare System] chapters.
Pictures: I was going to go with a photo from my walk, but I went with the template picture instead.
Written On: March 30 [From 12:07am 12:46am. Gdocs.]
Last Edited: 2020 April 03 [Adapted from Gdoc, so, second draft; final draft for the Internet.]
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.