Race Training and Melt Downs

It's Thursday. Race day is Sunday.

I feel like I've lived a lifetime since Monday.

Over the past few weeks I've been struggling with depression. I'm talking about the chemical imbalance of serotonin in the brain. I don't know all the medical jargon but I can tell you this: I do not produce enough of it on my own. I need medication to keep those serotonin babies rockin'.

About 3 months ago my doc took me off Cymbalta (antidepressant) because he felt it was too strong now that I am doing well and cured of UC. He was right too, my energy returned and my head didn't seem foggy. He told me to pay attention to my body and come back if I started having signs of depression again.

Well, I've just been going along and not paying any attention and this just really snuck up on me. Of course, if I look back over the last month I see that I've been slowly declining. My hubby's been complaining that I've retreated into myself. He's right, that's usually the first sign, I become very introverted. Next, I've been getting behind in all my wifely/mommy duties. Laundry and other household chores have become huge mountains to scale. I find I don't want to leave the house, getting ready seems like such a chore. I am overwhelmed VERY easily. Just returning emails or phone calls seems like I'm rewriting the constitution. I can't make easy decisions like what to watch on TV and don't even get me started on trying to plan what's for dinner. I haven't been blogging either, another sign. It's hard to write when your brain can't seem to form complete sentences...

My wake-up call that made me go to the doctor was on Monday morning. Everyone left for the day and I knew I needed to start on the laundry but was feeling overwhelmed by the prospect of how. I know HOW to get it started, geez- I could do it in my sleep, that was the really frustrating part! But the idea of separating all those clothes reduced me to tears and I found myself crawling back in bed. After a few minutes of melting down, I realized something wasn't right. So I made the call and went to see the doc.

He confirmed my suspicion, I was suffering from depression. So, back on an antidepressant I go. The drug of choice this time: Wellbutrin. I've taken this one before and have had great success in the past with it, my hope is it will do me right again. When my Ulcerative Colitis worsened the Wellbutrin was not as effective and so I started Cymbalta. In the past I could just take the 300mg time released pill of Wellbutrin but now with my ostomy, my body pushes things through my system much quicker. It's highly likely that a timed release pill will make it's way into my bag before it has done it's full duty. I know this because I've passed a 12 hour cold medicine pill before. (I actually heard it hit the bag with a little pop sound.) Fortunately, Wellbutrin comes in 100mg pills I can take 3 times during the day. Now, I just need to remember to do so! I set an alarm on my phone to remind me, maybe that will help me. What would we do with out our smart phones? I'd be lost. And depressed. ;)

I woke up at 4:30 this morning with my eyes crusted shut. It seems my darling spawn has shared his Pink Eye with me. Just great. Now I must wear my glasses for several days. I hate wearing my glasses! First, I am darn near blind so I don't see well with them and second, my body is conditioned so that when I wear glasses it thinks it's time for bed. This really sucks as I am training for that freakin' 1/2 marathon on Sunday and running in glasses is awful for me! The doc did say I can wear my contacts for the race but should take them out again after. Still not a happy camper. And to top it off, Pink Eye is so very contagious that I can't go to the gym either. Ugh.

Makes me wanna cuss.

I'm a little nervous about the race on Sunday. OK, seriously nervous. I've never done anything like this before, I'm almost 40 and have had 3 major surgeries in the past year. I'm still trying to figure out how my body works with this ostomy thing too. You'd think after a year I'd kinda have it down but I'm still experiencing "firsts." Such a learning curve with this.

Learning how to keep my body healthy and hydrated during runs has been a trial and error process. I know I dehydrate very easily, especially in hot weather, because my large intestine is gone. (Interesting fact: the large intestine is what holds water to keep you hydrated.) I have to be extra careful or I could find myself in major trouble very quickly. I experienced some heat exhaustion this summer because of it; let me tell ya; it is not fun and pretty scary. You get dizzy and tingly all over and can even experience some confusion. Weird, huh. I also seem to burn through my food energy quicker. I don't think this is the same thing as burning calories faster, it's more like I don't have any place for it to go once it passes through the small intestine. It's in the bag (so to speak) after the small intestine is done with it. I've learned what foods help sustain my energy best and also what types of sports drinks I can use that are helpful. I also started using these gel packs (Cliff Bar makes 'em) that squirt into your mouth, taste nasty but they work.

I'm also worried about my stamina. I would love to say I plan to run the whole 13.1 miles but that's not very realistic for me. I will need to walk some. Right now I can run a full hour (about 5 miles). I think I will start by running the first full hour and then walk for a few minutes to catch my breath then run again for  30 minutes and so on until I can cross that  finish line. I hope to finish somewhere under the 3 hour mark. Hope being the key word. Whatever I do it in, I'll just be so excited that I did it!

Well, must run--literally. Lots to do today...


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