Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Better and then worse. and other thoughts

So--apparently you can still get the flu while on antibiotics for strep throat and nasal stuffiness....that's what happened to me. After my awesome run last Wednesday--by Thursday afternoon I had a fever which would last me through the weekend and my flu symptoms were frustrating enough that for a few days I couldn't really stand up without getting winded. My coach mentioned something about cutting my workouts in half.....I could barely stand up from the couch, so unfortunately, I haven't done anything, except work on getting my cough better, which is still continuing.

I haven't been *this* sick in a really long time. Someone at work told me it was because I spent so much time training for Ironman and this is the first time my body really had time to relax.

That's an annoying assumption. If I had a dime for every time I heard someone say "Oh, that's because you train," or "Oh, it's all that training you do," I would have a new Guru bike =0. (for those of you unfamiliar with Guru, here is the website: It's annoying, especially when my office basically closed on Friday due to the flu.

I understand that people think i'm a bit strange for Ironman training and I know it's not the most conventional of sports, but i'm tired of people (mostly at work) waiting for my knees to give out, or for me to pass out from the flu or something! The *second* I told my boss I was sick, she was like "you knowwwww, it's probably from the training." Save it.

I should post a listing of all the "assumptions" or "gentle warnings" from people about my racing/training. One of my favorite assumptions is where people "assume" that I just woke up and did an Ironman--without any training. People will go "Oh, you're amazing." I'm not amazing, it's hard work! I understand this comment from my parents, because they're kind of new to the whole idea in general, but my friends who are athletes could do one as well, so i'm not sure why "amazing" comes to mind.

I try to explain to them, that really with a year of training, I think most people COULD do an Ironman, but they laugh at me and the thought to them is just preposterous. Why? Do people really shy away from challenges that easily? Not Ironman necessarily, but do people look at marathoners or artists or writers or people who spend years perfecting a craft as wishful thinkers? I think more people need to stop the "what if's" and start "doing," whatever it is they have an interest in.

I don't expect people to fully understand my slight obsession with triathlon, but I certainly don't enjoy the people who are so skeptical, they ask questions with the "you're being careful right?" face on.

I suppose it stems from my hearing loss, that when I was younger, due to two accidents and surgeries, I was told I couldn't do gymnastics, wasn't allowed to swim back stroke (in fear I would hit my head again and lose more hearing), and I wasn't allowed to head the ball in soccer even though I played wing. After being told I wasn't allowed to do sports a certain way, I found other ways to enjoy my sports, and I'm finding that joy with triathlon as well, so I would hope people give me the benefit of the doubt that I do my research and I have an extremely knowledgeable coach and that I wouldn't put myself in a situation where I could create "danger" for myself.

**stepping off my soap box** thanks for reading


Angie said...

Hey Mer,
Sorry you are sick. I hope you get to feeling better.

Ok, don't listen to all those dumb people. They say this stuff because they feel bad about themselves. Most people are too lazy to live outside of their little box. You just gotta let it roll off your back! Don't let them get to you. You are an awesome athlete!! Talk to ya later.

Paul said...

Hey Mer,

I just finished up with 4 weeks of illness. With a 1 week break in the middle. There's been a nasty bug going around in SD. I get those same comments all the time. It is pretty rare when I smoke my immune system and then get sick, but it's obvious when it happens. Get well soon. See you around.

Shan said...

MER!!! (((Hugs!))) Get well soon!

I agree with what Angie wrote. Many people don't have the courage to be outside of their comfort zone. The fact that you do triathlon because you LOVE it and it makes you feel GOOD is all that matters. For me, even my PARENTS make comments to me about trashing my immune system or overdoing it with the training. It can be hard when people tell you that you can't or shouldn't do something. I just tell em to fluff off and continue on my way :)

Sending lots of love!

JMoTriBella said...

Feel Better Mer! And AMEN SISTER! Luckily there are some of us that do understand! Sucks that it is taking so long to get Paul said, there is a really nasty bug going around. I know of quite a few people that have been sick for weeks! You'll get through it, and you be back kicking our rears on the the bike soon!

jen said...

From the health care professional I hear that crap all the time and being sedentary is a risk factor. Guess what? Fat people have horrible knees. Also do you know how many coworkers I have that have gone on disability due to plantar fasciitis. Oh please, any athlete would take a roll of tape and some ice and get over it. It's a good thing I allocated one dime for every annoying comment and invested in a Guru painted in pink. I will say though you are amazing. You've trained hard and smart and you are an inspiration.

Mer! said...

Aww! Thanks for all your comments rock!!! THANK YOU!!