Tag Archives: tracheal stenosis

Like Breathing Through a Straw

Today was a good day overall…until CrossFit. My Tracheal Stenosis was acting up today. Unfortunately, it was quite inflamed/swollen so as we started pushing the cardio I was basically breathing through a small tube. I can’t explain exactly how it makes me feel. First, I get tired quickly from the lack of oxygen but worse than that is the embarrassment. For those people who don’t know about my condition I come across as being extremely out of shape with all of my huffing and puffing. I have to stop to try to catch my breath, which makes me feel like I’m slacking. I just don’t know what to do to make it better between dilations.

Our strength workout was 3 rounds of 20 GHB Sit Ups and 20 Back Extensions. I’m still not able to loosen up enough to extend back past a 90 degree angle on the sit ups. That’s something that I need to work on.

I’ve been doing the 100 push ups challenge the past couple of weeks and I think it’s helping. Part of our warm up was 10 push ups which went pretty good for me! Tomorrow is my last day for this week’s challenges. We also did some pull ups which I’m still struggling with, even with the black band. The last part of the warm up was 5 burpees. I was able to hop out and back in for all of them (both rounds) which thrilled me. I wasn’t able to do that many before without stepping back.

The WOD was 3 rounds for time of a 400 meter weighted (15#) run, 12 Front Squats (45#),12 Box Jumps, and 12 Sumo Deadlift High Pulls. That run did me in. It was all downhill from there. In fact, I just had to do a fast walk for the last 2 runs because I couldn’t catch my breath. The front squats weren’t too bad on my elbows. I have a hard time keeping my elbows up. Apparently, I was having a tough time getting low enough on my squats. I think that was because I was concentrating on my arms too much. The box jumps are getting better. I had a couple of mishaps where I didn’t make it to the top but hit the edge of the box. Thankfully I didn’t face plant! The sumo deadlift high pulls were ok. On my last round Shane was pushing me to finish my last 6 without putting the bar down. I really wanted to because I was really sucking air, but I pushed through and made it. I was whimpering at the end! Finished in 18:53. I crashed on the floor for a bit to catch my breath afterward. Tears were wanting to fall, but there was no point in it. My emotions were running high, I was torn down and embarrassed.

My throat started closing up like this last month and I was afraid my stenosis was getting worse again but then it went back to what it was like after my last dilation. I’m hoping this is the same thing, that my throat will open back up and I’ll be ok. Sunday is the big race, so I’m hoping I can breathe well then too.

400 Meter Sprint? Are You Crazy?!

It’s Tuesday!! That means I get my butt kicked in CrossFit. Our warm up today was a 400 Meter Sprint for time. Uh….what? You want to time my 400 meter sprint? HAHAHAHA….ok…I’m slow. I’m not a runner. My normal mile is about 16:30…so I was a little intimidated by this. We lined up on the road and as soon as Shane said “GO” I tried to push my legs as fast as I could go. I finished last, which was expected. My time was 2:12. While I wasn’t that happy with that time, it was only about 20 seconds behind the person before me and as Michelle said that works out to about a 9 minute mile! So, I cut my normal mile in half. I like looking at it that way better!

The WOD was Tabatas of Squats, Push Ups, Butterfly Sit Ups, and Ring Dips. I kinda like tabatas, but at the same time they’re painful!  For those of you not familiar with Tabatas, basically you go all out for 20 seconds and do as many reps of the assigned exercise as possible, then rest for 10 seconds. You repeat this cycle 8 times. You keep track of your lowest reps and that becomes your score. So, for example, I did 13 squats (my most) and averaged about 10 squats, but my lowest rep round was 9, so I get 9 points for my squats. The next time we do squat tabatas I’ll be able to compare my score to today’s score. So, how did I do?

First…Ignore Chad and Cortni. They’re both beasts and it’s not fair to compare myself against them! Michelle did very well. I ended up with a 9 for my squats, 8 for push ups (I was happy with this score!), 7 for sit ups, and 6 for dips. Overall, I’m pretty happy with my score. I feel like I’ve come a long way in the 3 months I’ve been going to CrossFit. All of us (Alaina, Alan/Alen/Allen, Michelle) have. I’m excited to see what the rest of this year brings.

OH…another small victory for me. We had to do burpees in our warm up as well (only 5 each round, 2 rounds) and while they still sucked, I felt pretty strong doing them!! I don’t know that I could have done much more than 5 in a row but I was able to hop my legs back and hop them up to my chest whereas before I’d have to step back.

In other news, I had my 6 month check with for my Tracheal Stenosis today. Dr. D said everything looked stable. The area has healed well and while it’s slightly tighter than when I had the dilation done, it’s still much better than before the dilation and the “shelf” (a ridge of scar tissue) isn’t growing back (yet.). So, I got a clean bill of health and go back in another 6 months. He also told me that I needed to get to a healthy weight because the more fat you have, the more cells you have, the more demand your body has for oxygen. “I’m not telling you to lose 100lbs, or 2olbs, or even 10lbs, just get to a healthy weight.” Umm…ok. How do I get to a healthy weight if I don’t lose lbs?! Of course, I’m already working on this. He’s told me this before, but I thought he might notice a 30lb weight loss since the last time I saw him…guess not. Some men just aren’t very observant!

7 Year Itch

Mike and I will be married 7 years tomorrow, 1/31/11. As I’ve mentioned, we have signed up for Angie’s Half Crazy 1/2 Marathon on March 27th. Mike decided he wanted to try to run a 1/2 marathon today to see if he could do it. Yep…you heard that right. He doesn’t believe in “training” for a race, so he wanted to do a dry run first. In all fairness, he runs 4 miles every morning Monday-Friday so he’s in pretty good shape. We decided to call this the 7 Year Itch 1/2 Marathon since it’s right before the big day! Thankfully, neither one of us have the “itch”. Before I started I put Body Glide all over my feet since I typically get blisters pretty bad. Today I was scheduled to go 7 miles for my 1/2 marathon training. Originally, I was going to stop at 7 miles (since Mike is about twice s fast as me, that would put us finishing about the same time) however, I decided if he was going to do it, I was going to do it.

 

I did the wogging thing again instead of interval running/walking. I went about a mile for each wogging  time so I was happy with that. At some point I got tired and was walking faster than I was jogging so I stuck with just walking the rest. The first 8 miles weren’t too bad. I could feel a blister forming on the ball of both feet but it didn’t seem too bad. Mike passed me a few times on our track…no surprise there! Once I hit the 8 mile mark, I started going downhill quickly. I met back up with Mike (who finished his run in about 2:20 and actually probably ran closer to 15 miles since he goofed up one of his loops) about that time and he walked the rest of it with me. That was a big help. At this point, I was tired and wishing I had some music. I didn’t bring my nano because it was threatening to rain and I didn’t want to mess it up. I was hurting pretty good for the last 4 miles. The blisters were screaming and my legs were starting to really get tired. While I tried to increase my pace, I wasn’t successful. In fact, the difference between my starting pace and my ending pace is outrageous. Needless to say, I’m glad I have 2 more months to continue training for the next one.

 

 

As you can see from my splits, I started struggling at mile 9 and just went downhill from there. My average was ok, not great. However, my doctor told me I’d probably only be able to do 3-5 miles when exercising because of my Tracheal Stenosis so I’m thrilled to prove him wrong! I am able to do most everything I want, and that means a lot to me. So…let’s see how this breaks down with the charts!

 

 

See what I mean? I crashed and burned from mile 1 to mile 13! Oh well…this is a preliminary run so we’ll see what happens at the 1/2 marathon at the end of March!

 

What did you do today?

200%

My dilation yesterday went fairly well. When they woke me up in the operating room telling me to breathe I was having problems breathing again. However, I think part of it is because I freaked out because a tube was in my throat. I need to just calm down and try to focus, but it’s hard to focus when you have a tube shoved down your throat! Again, I didn’t have any pain afterward. I don’t know if I just have a high tolerance for pain or if my doctor is that good! I still have some swelling today but it’s not too bad. The doctor said they were able to open my throat up 200% more than it was. So, I’m extremely excited about that. I’m hoping this time lasts a lot longer than the last time. The only other odd thing were the little dots left behind on my right arm from the blood pressure cough. At least, we assume it was from the cuff because it isn’t on my other arm!

It looked like someone took a toothbrush, dipped it into red paint and splattered my hand and arm! The doctor said to lay off of exercise until Monday. So, I can sit out for a week and not feel guilty! LOL…it will just make it tough to get back to it on Monday.

Hope y’all are doing well!

Brand New Day!

Yesterday was my 6th day of P90X. I was hopping around, kicking and punching like Jet Li to the Kenpo dvd. My dogs made sure I was ok by licking my face when I was doing my cool down. They’re so sweet! Needless to say, I probably looked like I was about to kill over because I sure felt like it. As I’ve mentioned before, I have tracheal stenosis which makes working out extra tough. Think about working out with a mask over your face that only allows in the amount of air you can suck in through a large drinking straw. Yeah…not fun!

Tomorrow is my dilation day. In other words, I get to go “under the knife” and have my throat stretched back out. Last time they weren’t able to get me to 100%, but I still felt fantastic! I’m hoping since my stenosis isn’t as bad this time as it was the first time that they’ll be open to open it up a little bit more. So, tomorrow will be a brand new day where I’ll be able to enjoy fresh, plentiful air!

However, I’m still extremely nervous. While I didn’t have any pain last time, I’m not sure that the outcome will be the same this time. I’m hoping so, but you never know. I’ll be at the hospital tomorrow at 6:30 and the surgery will begin at 8. Now, if I can just make myself sleep tonight things should be good!