Daily Archives: August 24, 2010

Hello Heart, are you there?

My name is Princess of Pavement, my sneakers kick the streets ass, and my running fashion rules the alleyways, but I have a confession. I am a hypochondriac. A major hypochondriac.

Brain tumour, thought I had one. Skin cancer, that too. Lime disease, found a tick on me once. Arthritis, been there. Stroke, there too. But probably the most amusing one of all (not so much for me, but for everyone else around me) I thought I was going to have to get my hands amputated because of Raynaud’s syndrome!

My hands were turning blue, like this sickly grey blue, and I was totally freaking out, so I went to my doctor (who, for the most part, is useless) and he told me I had Raynaud’s. And I was like uh what, what’s that? And he told me to Google it. He actually told ME – the second biggest hypochondriac in the world (my mom beats me out on that one … sorry moms ;)) – to Google Doctor myself! Are you kidding me?

And so after reading website after website on this syndrome, the only thing that stuck so clear in my brain was the risk of gangrene! I was totally freaking out that my hands were going to be chopped off, that I was going to have to get a stenographer, that I was going to lose my job, that I was going to end up selling pencils on East Hastings! However, after a good month of freaking out, turns out it was just my $300 jeans bleeding onto my hands! Thanks doc!

You’d figure I’d learn from something like that, hey? Nah. I added another ailment to the list a few weeks ago. I thought I had a faulty heart, so faulty it didn’t even have a beat. Pretty much, I thought I was dead.

I was testing my new Garmin heart rate monitor at work for the first time. I had followed all the directions: I wet the strap, made sure the ‘Garmin’ on the front was facing right side up, and I strapped it right where my bra strap sits. I turned on the watch and waited. There was a pace, there was a time, but there was no heart rate. A big fat 0 was laughing in my face. I Google searched, I scoured the Garmin forums, I put in a new battery, I tightened up the strap, I held the watch right in front of the strap andddddd nothing.

It wasn’t until I headed out for my run hours later and hooked up with Pete the Garmin Guru that I found relief. He told me I wasn’t dead; I was skeptical. He looked at his watch, looked at mine, pressed a couple of buttons on mine, and voila suddenly I had a heart beat. (I had the watch on average heart rate, not current heart rate) Huh, I wasn’t dead after all … note to self, update Facebook status to inform my peeps that I was no longer dead, never dead in fact 😀

I’ve been running with the heart rate monitor for a few weeks now and while I’m not in love with it, I don’t hate it either. When I first put it on, it feels like it’s sucking all the air, every last breath of it out of me, kind of like how when my sister-in-law was synching up the corset on my wedding gown and I thought I was gonna pass out from lack of air. And just like the wedding gown, I’ve found that I sometimes have troubles swallowing with it on, like the water can’t get past the area where the strap is strangling sitting. Not the nicest feeling in the world. But it usually goes away, and fast.

Case in point: last week when I headed out for my long run, and I turned my Garmin on in the car just before reaching our meet-up location, I noticed that again I didn’t have a heart beat, and after about a minute, maybe even longer, of pressing buttons and wondering what the heck was going on, it suddenly dawned on me that I had forgotten the strap at home – I totally thought I had it on!

And when I’m running, I rarely ever notice it. It doesn’t slip, it doesn’t feel super duper tight (well no tighter than the sports bras do) and I’m sure all the information that it’s shooting at me (ie. max heart rate, resting heart rate, zone 1, zone 2, zone 10) is probably really good information – I’ve just got to figure out what it all means! That’s next 🙂

TODAY’S GYM (major rant on this tomorrow!)

  • 6 p.m. BG before: 4.8 (granola bar, no bolus)
  • Warmup: 15 minutes stationary bike
  • Circuit: 15 minutes
  • Cool down: 10 minutes elliptical trainer
  • 7 p.m. BG after: 5.0

AND EARLIER: 50 lunges!!! (more on that tomorrow too)