Saturday, August 27, 2011

Running with asthma

Short heavy breathing followed by constant hacking and spitting up excess mucus building up in my lungs, the metallic taste of blood starts accumulating in my mouth, chest becomes even more tight, the feeling of pressure building up in my jaw, cheeks and ears and 5 minutes from the start I have my hands on my knees gasping for air and slowly walking home. You can probably guess that for the longest time I very much disliked running. My first experiences with it would be in 9th grade when I joined the high school wrestling team. Like any school sport there is always some amount of running during the practices and we ran about two miles per practice. Hated it. I always lagged behind most of my teammates and never really improved through the entire season. My mom eventually took me to see doctor and he diagnosed me with cold/exercise induced asthma and perscribed me an inhaler.
   After my freshman year I quit the wrestling team (unrelated to asthma) and never really used my inhaler. Through the next ten years or so I became pretty out of shape. I think I tried about 3 or 4 times to start running, but any sort of exercise, especially in the cold winter air would leave me gasping for air and spitting up a liter of flem leaving a taste of blood in my mouth (not sure what the blood taste is all about). Then finally at the turn around point when I started running again I went back to the doctors and had him prescribe me another inhaler, this time I used it. With help from the inhaler and learning to breath through my nose Lo and behold the flem spouting stopped, the wheezing stopped, and that messed up blood taste in my mouth stopped. I finally saw improvements in both cardiovascular and respiratory. I could actually do a slow run with out breathing heavy.
    I was running one of my normal routes today after class and I was short on time so Instead of using my inhaler and waiting 30 min I took a couple puffs and headed out. It started out alright, but 5 min into the run I could tell that I was breathing harder than I should be at the pace I was going, but also my legs started getting really heavy and my feet felt more like lead weights than usable extensions.  This went on for about a half an hour and then everything returned to normal. Asthma sucks...wind

   Anyways, I'd like to give a pat on the back to everyone who has dealt with this crappy disease and puff on my friends.