When you pushed yourself a bit too far

Over the years, people ask me how I make myself work out.  I am by NO means a gym rat. I honestly hate working out inside.


So, for years, I have done everything I could to workout in the great outside.  To inspire myself, I sign up for a big event, pay for it, and then train to make sure I have at least a shot to complete it….

There have been triumphs

Finished Reach the Beach
Finished Reach the Beach

and failures


over the years, but regardless, the preparation kept me in shape.

This post, however, isn’t about the success or failure. It’s about knowing when you have pushed yourself as hard as you possibly can… Maybe too far!

Let me give an example.

When I was a young lad, at WSU, I donated blood one day image

Well, the donation day just happened to also be the day of my step-aerobics class. (Don’t judge, it was a 80s, the girls were cute, and I didn’t ride back then…) I had paid extra for the class, and being a cheap SOB poor college kid, I didn’t want to miss a class.

So against the advice of the person who drew blood, I worked out hard about 3 hours after giving a pint! Surprisingly, that wasn’t bad at all (20 something boys are able to survive MANY things that would kill an old fart like me nowadays). However, the 2 mile walk home, in 90 degree heat, OVER a hill, damn near did me in.  I was very dizzy and had to sit NOW when I got home.

Editors note: If memory serves me (and it is fuzzy) my roommates tried to help me re hydrate with a few beers….

During my mountain climbing days, especially on the attempts on Mt. Rainier


I would be fine, even to drive home afterwards.  But once there, and the body relaxed, uncontrollable shivers hit.  It would be the middle of summer and I’d have to crawl in bed NOW! I was fine in the morning, but when those hit, I knew I had given all I had.

Then there is the out-of-body experience climb.  It was on my way to Camp Muir (10000 foot mark of Rainier) with my buddy Tom.

Camp Muir, overnight camp for Summit push
Camp Muir, overnight camp for Summit push

I was climbing fine, but then I noticed something.  Even though I was having a conversation with Tom, it was as if it wasn’t me talking. I could hear everything Tom said, but when the answer came out of my mouth, I felt like I was listening so someone else saying the words.  I knew exactly what that someone else was going to say, and when he was going to say it, but it was NOT me speaking.  Plus, just one time on the climb, I felt like I was looking down on the group climbing from above….

Editors note 2: OK the smart thing to do would’ve been turn around and go down. The trouble is, 30 – 40 something guys think they are still 20 something, and they STILL aint that smart!

Then there was the day, 2 years ago, I spoke gibberish after the 1 day, 97 degree Seattle to Portland (206 miles!) In fact, I called 20 miles out saying I wasn’t sure I was going to finish and my lovely bride spurred me on!


Michelle was there, got my picture taken, (A little glassy-eyed I bleieve)


and got me to the hotel. After a shower, room service delivered a beer and pasta.  After about 3/4 of each, Michelle informs me that I was no longer speaking English. She just took away the tray, put me to bed and let me sleep.

For a week afterwards, the left hand could not form the Live long, and prosper sign from Mr Spock, and all I wanted to do was sit! (notice the empty wine glass!)10553731_10203098330792884_3598824036776959388_o

Editors note 3: OK, 50 year olds should be smarted than this, but we want to think we are as tough as we were in our 20s

Now some of you might be curious, why would I post this today?

Well, Tuesday I gave blood. No issues there at all. I was told to not do anything strenuous for 12 hours.  This time I listened!  It was well over 36 hours when I took off for a fast 26 miles last night.  There was a bit of a breeze, but I kept thinking “Damn this is hard than it should be!” But I finished and got home by 7.

Sure as hell, for the first time in years, the shivers hit! No lie, I had to dive under the covers and shiver for a while until I warmed up! All I can think of is that its been quite a few months since I’ve had the chance the donate, and the body isn’t recovering as quickly!

So, yep, I just stayed in bed, went to sleep, and felt great this morning!  I am taking the day off from riding to go on a date night (pre planned!) with my gorgeous wife. But I will be riding this weekend.  By then, I should be 100%

Editors note 4: But if I am not you KNOW I will never admit it!

Like the wind!

4 thoughts on “When you pushed yourself a bit too far

Leave a Reply