Is it really possible I’m allergic to running? (Another ER visit)

Monday I was all set to go on my 6 miler tempo run. I had had a rather long day with my kids and was anxiously waiting for my husband to get home so I could finally escape run. Thankfully, he came home early and we had a quick chat on whether I should run in our neighborhood or go to the gym. The heat at 6 in the evening was awful and coupled with humidity (and hot wind), it just didn’t seem at all pleasant–so to the gym I went.

I started with an uneventful warm up and at mile 2 picked up the pace. I was sweating profusely but feeling good. If you’ve been following my running journey, then you know that I vary rarely listen to music when I run. I sometimes pull out the headphones when I’m on the treadmill though and today was one of those days. I was jamming out to a Shakira station on Pandora and in a serious running groove. When all of a sudden…..my palms starting itching.

I knew instantly what was happening. I tried to ignore it and wish it away but by the time I got to mile 4 I knew it was only going to get worse.

I was having another allergic reaction.

A million thoughts raced through my mind. What could have caused it? I’m inside for crying out loud! On a treadmill!

The first time this happened, I was running in my neighborhood and thought it could have been some flowers, trees, or bushes I’d passed. I had also eaten right before running and we all thought maybe it was that as well.

But this time, I was at the gym. I had not eaten before exercising. I wasn’t wearing anything that I wore previously. What. Could. It. Be?

I cut the run short at 4.5 miles and collected my belongings. I knew I had enough time to get home.

bbb

 

I called my husband on my way to let him know what was going on. We thought about whether I should head straight to the ER or go home. I decided to go home first and when my husband saw me, he said it was definitely a hospital worthy visit. I’ll spare you the head shot but my arms and legs were covered in hives.

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Interestingly, I looked way worse the first time. My face was a replica of Will Smith’s allergic reaction in the movie Hitch and my entire body from head to toe was swollen and red.

But in this most recent episode, I felt much, much worse on the inside. My brain felt like it was swelling. That’s what was scaring me the most. There was just an intense pressure in my head that wouldn’t cease.

I drove myself to the hospital (my kids were already in bed) and was checked in pretty quickly despite the Emergency Room being extremely crowded. I was given steroids and Benedryl and they worked almost immediately. The swelling went down, the itching stopped, and my head felt a lot better.

But I was still with no answers. No idea what could have caused it. I plan on seeing an allergist (I foolishly didn’t see one the first time) in the hopes we can find some clues. In the meantime, I have to continue running with my EPI pen and make sure I respond quick to the symptoms. At least I know when it’s happening.

I just hate that I have no idea what triggers it.

I don’t want to run in fear. I don’t want my husband to stress out whenever I leave for a run. I don’t want to stop running.

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Exercise Induced Anaphylaxis—bah humbug!!

Thanks for listening and letting me vent. ❀

–Doesn’t being allergic to running sound awful??

–Tell me something positive that’s been happening in your running world πŸ™‚

 

 

 

 

 

Week(end) Recap

I had written last week how I’d given myself a marathon training pre-season before I get down to business. Well, business has arrived and today is my first official day of training!! Woohoo!! I have 6 miles on the agenda and we’ll see how they go.

Last week was a busy week with preparation for the holiday on Friday (Independence Day here in the States) but I still managed to get quite a few runs in–

On Monday, my pre-season schedule had me running 4 miles, one warm-up, two tempo, and one cool down. Despite once again venturing out in 106 degree heat, it went far better than the previous Monday as my splits went like this:

Mile 1-9:21
Mile 2-8:44
Mile 3-8:41
Mile 4-8:53

The last cool down mile was a little too fast but I had begun Lebronning (cramping) and just wanted to get the run over with. I was happy to see that I was keeping my splits consistent again as it’s something I’ve been trying really hard to work on.

Tuesday according to my plan is a cross training day and I know this is where I might be cheating with Run Less, Run Faster. Tuesdays are group runs with my running group and I really like meeting up with them. It’ll be hard to give this day up to a day in the gym as I’d much rather hang out with them–I’m thinking if I did an easy-less than 4 miles-run followed up with the bike or something that it might work.

So the plan was to do some easy running but I ended up running and chatting with a girl who’s pretty fast. You can tell that I couldn’t keep up as my splits looked liked the hot mess that I was

Mile 1-9:06
Mile 2-9:17
Mile 3-9:27
Mile 4-9:47

Another what I was I thinking....

Another what I was I thinking….

Wednesday was speed work at the track but like previous session, there wasn’t much speed happening. Unless you count me trying to eat my ice pop as fast as I could before it melted lol! Anyway, three miles done.

Cross training as planned for Thursday but because I knew I’d be running the following day for the holiday (Fridays are typically rest days) I made Thursday my day of rest.

Friday we were all up bright and early for a fun 5k with my run club. They had a splash mob-bish run planned so it was going to be some wet and wild fun!

Little did I know that the wet would really be sweat from the humidity going on that morning–holy cow!

This was at 6:50 in the morning!

This was at 6:50 in the morning!

The race itself was really fun as my running group always finds unique ways to make these get togethers interesting. We were told to arrive on time as the race would be chip timed and we needed to pick them up early before the race started.

My race chip :D

My race chip πŸ˜€

We all do these in fun so it wasn’t a competitive 5k. I kept a decent pace (although difficult because I could really feel the humidity!) and finished in 28:45 (9:01/mile).

I had an 8 mile long run planned for Saturday and I was up at crazy 0’clock to get started. The humidity had carried over at at 5 in the morning and we were running in 82 degrees weather with 51% humidity. It was pretty awful and I could feel it the entire way. Luckily my plan’s long run pace was manageable and I stuck to it the entrΓ©e way: 8 miles (9:50/mile). I was actually really excited about this as I hadn’t run this far in a while (not counting the 27k trail run).

Working up some nice leg sweat.

Working up some nice leg sweat.

Sunday was rest day with stretching and foam rolling.

Overall, a very productive week at just over 22 miles. I’m looking forward to the official first day of training today πŸ™‚ 16 weeks til Marine Corps Marathon!!

I'm Jesse Spano excited about this!!!

I’m Jesse Spano excited about this!!!

–How was your running week?

–Did you run/race this weekend?

–Get my Jesse Spano reference? πŸ™‚

Very Inspiring Blogger {An Award}

One of the things I’ve been loving about blogging is finding other blogs to read. I’m not sure if it was because Colby and Tina commented on a post I wrote or if they commented on my fave, Salt’s blog at one point, but the girls that are It’s A Marathon AND A Sprint are one of my favorite finds.

Last week when I wrote about the awesomeness that is Janji, it was because I had discovered the company through their blog. I love blogs that are informative, honest, humorous, and written by people who care about what they write. You see this in every post Tina and Colby publish.

So it was such a great surprise to find out they nominated me for a Very Inspiring Blogger Award! Surprising because they’re the ones that inspirenot only with their running talents but with the way they write. I’m an English teacher and writing is my thing, so when I read good stuff from good people it makes me want to be a better writer. Thank you Colby and Tina for being such awesome people and considering me for this award.

veryinspiringbloggerThe Rules:

  • Thank and link to the person who nominated you
  • List the rules and display the award
  • Share seven facts about yourself (I know, I know. MORE stuff about Helly???)
  • Nominate 15 other amazing blogs and comment on their posts to let them know they have been nominated
  • Optional: display the award logo on your blog and follow the blogger who nominated you

Alright, I’ll try and make this short and sweet πŸ™‚

1. I don’t like the distance number stickers people put on cars. Nothing against people who do, it’s just not my style. And it’s not just the distance stickers, I’m not a fan of putting any type of bumper sticker thing on my car. You won’t find a stick figure family on the back of my Chevy.

2. I also don’t snot rocket. Again, it’s just not style. Most of the time, I carry a small hand towel or a Runningluv type thing to wipe snot from nose and if all else fails, I’m okay with using my shirt. Gross maybe, but I think snot rockets are grosser.

snotrocket

3. I loved wrestling growing up. My brother and I were huge fans of the World Wrestling Federation (now known as WWEntertainment). I grew up watching Ravishing Rick Rude, The Million Dollar Man, The Heartbreak Kid Shawn Michaels, Bret the Hitman Hart, the Ulimate Warrior, Mr. Perfect, and of course Hulk Hogan. I even went to a few live ones and let me tell you, it was pretty amazing.

I stopped watching shortly after the Stone Cold Steve Austin era ended and when I no longer could smell what The Rock was cooking.

4. My high school job was working at a saddle shop. I wore boots and Wranglers and sold western clothing and cowboy hats. I listened to country music all day and hung out with the the guy who made saddles. It was so cool to see something beautifully handmade begin from just a scrap of leather.

If I ever do a 50 mile race it would be this one only because of the awesome buckle you get when/if you finish.

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5. I don’t like soft ice cream. Ice cream from Dairy Queen just doesn’t do it for me. I’m more of a Baskin Robins or Cold Stone type of gal. My favorite flavors are chocolate, chocolate chip, and sherbet. I may even get all three together πŸ™‚

6. Getting lost is my thing. When I was young, I’d always somehow stray away. On summer vacations, it became a running joke that my family would lose me. I got lost at Disneyland one year, at the beach another year, and at our State Fair one October. Luckily all three times I was found pretty quickly.

One time, in my sleep, I rolled off the bed and then somehow ended underneath it! All while still asleep! My parents freaked and even called the police but there I was, snoozing under my bed.

7. I love American history. I know that a lot of people like traveling abroad because of so many historical attractions and don’t get me wrong, I love to do that too, but I love learning about our own country’s beginnings. I’m so pumped for the Marine Corps Marathon because it will be my first time in D.C.

As a teacher, I teach freshman, sophomores, and juniors and I love teaching juniors the best because it’s all American literature. I get to read the The Crucible, Edgar Allan Poe, and The Great Gatsby all day. Heaven.

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My nominees (in no particular order):

1. Confessions of an Amateur Athlete
2. The Running Schlub
3. Blog About Running
4. Run Away With Me
5. So Very Slightly Mad
6. This Mama Runs For Cupcakes
7. Black Dog Runs Disney
8. PB&PRs
9. Little Green Running Shoes
10. The Little GSP
11. Life Between the Miles
12. Piper’s Run
13. Running on Healthy
14. Slacker Runner
15. Running Vegetarian

Please check out these awesome blogs!

–What are some good blogs you’re following nowadays?

–Thoughts on my random facts? Wanna share one?

If you’re in the states, I hope you have a great 4th of July tomorrow!!