[Sober Living] Headache After Exercising…

The headache felt like a heartbeat with some engine pangs. I’m not sure that the minor hike there and back caused it, because I felt fine up until I went to row. That’s where the knocking sensations came in, during the first minute of my set, no less. After that, things called down, then I woke up with a tension headache. It could’ve been the dry weather, or maybe something worse? I don’t yet know.

These sorts of sensations have been common for me the past few months.

I no longer procrastinate as well, which I guess happens when you feel like there are only so many moments throughout any given day or week where you feel “well” enough to do anything, so when you do feel well, might as well do it, right? The minor hike there and back was to renew my apartment-mansion’s lease. The route I took was along the side of some apartments. I could have taken the more conventional route, but why not go explore?

Before entering the management office, I caught my breath.

I’ve learned over the years that after any degree of physical exertion, like running somewhere to get there on time, there’ll be the first minute or three where I don’t quite thinking clearly, and sometimes, I’ll even feel spaced out. That’s probably my body’s biological reaction to that exertion, so why not let it calm down? I did that, felt normal, and did that on the walk back. Nothing overly strenuous. Nothing I wouldn’t have done a thousand times before, much more rigorously.

Now, for whatever reason, my body seems unable to handle physical exertion.

At its worst, doing anything over walking up and down stairs would cause me such intense hypertension pain throughout my neck and the back of my head that, well, I’ve written extensively about it. These made migraines and tension headaches seem like easy mode. I’ve braved the worst of those storms, so now, when I feel those hypertension headaches bang in, I learn to adapt and overcome by reducing the amount of exertion I do.

It’s funny because I’ve been rowing casually the past year or so.

I want to get back into the longer rowing sets, but I have to get these headaches sorted out. I can’t be in the middle of a 30-minute set and have something creep in to distract or interrupt me. I’m OK – within reason – with phone calls, knocks on the door, or any other emergent issue, but a headache or sharp bodily pain is not what I want from life, and I’ve lived many years without these sorts of issues happening so frequently that I have to keep a daily watch over any possible headache triggers.

I walked to the office because that’s what I’d normally do.

I wouldn’t start up my car and drive the two minutes to get there. I’d take the five minutes, or whatever, to walk around my neighborhood, to get away from heavy machinery and heavy thinking to just be alone with some casual thoughts. I didn’t think about much of anything on that hike and that was nice. I want to start doing more of that again once the weather warms up back in the minor forest. If this is my last year being in the apartment-mansion, I want to explore that area more thoroughly, so I can feel like I soaked up the ambiance as much as I could.

I can’t live life on my own terms with these sorts of headaches.

If getting these hypertension headaches relates with high blood pressure or stress, then I’m willing to work with my newest primary care physician and newest neurologist to come up with some short-term and long-term treatment, since if the prednisone helped, briefly, that means there’s inflammation or too much pressure going on, so there must be an easier way to relieve that pressure than just being on prednisone casually for the rest of my life and limiting any physical activity.

This has been frustrating for me.

I used to like throwing all of my frustrations into my exercise. I’d burn through that stress fast then exhaust myself, but it’d free the worst of those burdens from me. Then I found writing. I can now explore those thoughts through less vulgar means and exercise at a more reasonable pace. Burning myself out on a rower after one minute isn’t as beneficial long-term as rowing for one hour at a moderate pace.

Although I call the column “Rowing Machine,” I want to expand my exercises.

Books like The 4-Hour Body and shows like Dumbbells were excellent resources for basic to advanced exercises to learn and practice because I started the column as a way to get my fitness and health under control, and I was further inspired by what I wanted to do but could not. Being unable to climb that kid’s playground structure to take a cooler photo of the Space Needle was a major concern for me.

I didn’t want to be weighed down like that.

Everything I’ve written about since then has been an extension of that. I don’t want to be weighed down by physical problems or mental problems with my life. I don’t want stuff to weigh me down. I don’t want self-confidence to prevent me from getting what I want in life. All of these essays have looked at the same problem from different perspectives. The closer you get to something, however, the harder it is for you to see the root problem.

What is causing all of these disparate headaches?

I could list off some potential causes: stress, spinal issues from a rowing injury, eye strain from unnatural lights, but as far as high blood pressure, is that my body’s inability to sort through the stresses and strains of life? Will I have to take blood pressure medication or antidepressants to life my best life?

Wouldn’t that just be living life as a legal and doctor-approved addict?

Quotes: None.
Sources: My personal experiences.
Inspirations: These Sober Living essays I publish on Wednesday afternoons will soon be more fitness-oriented, like here, where headaches can prevent me from doing positive things for my health, and so here I’m wondering what negative consequences of life I’ll have to take on in order to return back to my lifestyle of getting out there and living life…
Related: Other Sober Living essays.
Picture: Using a template doesn’t require any additional effort, not that drawing pictures or taking photos would burn enough calories to cause an issue…
Written On: 2019 December 29 [21 minutes. From 1:55am to “my newest primary care physician and newest neurologist ” at 2:08am. From 2:24am to “I didn’t want to be” at 2:30am. Gdocs.]
Last Edited: 2020 January 01 [Possible edits adapting from Gdocs to WordPress. Would this be the second draft, then?]
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.