Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Out of Commission

WARNING: GROSS PHOTO AHEAD

Yes, I know I missed Monday's blog post. I was going to use today's content for Monday, but I was kind of in too much pain to really do anything (work has been hell the last two days).

The reason for this?

Shingles.

Yep, body herpes/adult chickenpox. I had chickenpox when I was a kid - about 10 spots; out of school for two days - and have seen all the commercials about shingles, but it's typically an old person disease (50s/60s). The two main reasons anyone gets it are (1) high stress; or (2) a weakened immune system.

Life hasn't been really stressful lately and yeah, I've felt like crap recently (see: last Wednesday's post), but I feel like I've had a weaker immune system before and this hasn't popped up before.

In any case, it started off with random skin tingling. I hesitate to use the word "pain," but it felt like there was something on my side to cause the weird feeling, but when I looked, nada. Then, late Thursday night, I noticed a few spots. I don't know what made me think "shingles," but I started looking it up. Friday, the few spots turned into many ... and they spread from my side to my back. I called and got a doctor's appointment. Saturday, it started getting worse, but I still felt okay. Sunday ... it started escalating. I also missed my Sunday swim/lift workout for probably the first time this year.

Sunday night I slept like crap because I could not find a comfortable position. I was miserable Monday and that afternoon, I officially got diagnosed - yep, shingles. I got prednisone - a steroid (which I swear I'm on at least once a year - get it for death plague, too) - and Valtrex, the herpes medicine (because yes, I have a form of herpes now. blargh.).

The meds helped enough to let me sleep Monday night and nap a whole bunch Tuesday afternoon, but the downside is that I slept in such a way to make my back hurt.

Since shingles essentially affects a nerve in the core, my back and abs are KILLING me. It feels like I've done hours and hours of core work and I haven't; it's just this damn virus. Thankfully I got Lyrica (yay more drugs. I hate drugs) which helps with nerve pain and I was able to sleep in a somewhat normal position last night AND wake up and not be in miserable pain. Seriously, I broke down crying yesterday a few times thanks to the pain.

When I read up on shingles early on, it said that many people often describe the pain as "excruciating." I thought to myself, "Oh, this sucks, but it's not that bad."

Yeah. No. "Excruciating" is a pretty damn good word to describe this hell.

 photo shingles_zpsa03c2589.jpg
Taken this morning.

I'm dutifully taking my meds, because this seriously sucks.

Other Training News:

- I missed my swim Sunday because while I'm not technically contagious, I can spread this crap through water. Unfortunately, until it clears up, I shall not be swimming. Boo.

- Last week just might have been my first three run week since pre-IMAZ. The weather finally turned nice for a change and I was able to get out three times - a hopeful harbinger of the future ... but body herpes is having something to say about that. Dangit.

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