Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The sickness from outer space

There have been studies that link high levels of exertion with lowered immune response. The longer the exertion the worse the compromised immunity. Aside from the sparse number of refereed articles attesting to the after event immune response there are a smattering of articles that describe a pre-race increase in sickness related potentially to tapering. Both of these phenomena are well known. I've heard “Push yourself too hard and you will get sick” from many people (many of whom would never push themselves too hard because they know better.). “I caught a cold just before my A race” is a unfortunate refrain that many athletes mutter in defeat. Somewhere not too far down the road is a place where anytime one sweats one is at increased risk for disease. I would like to rally stats to show that there is some sort of continual health benefit that in its accumulation outweighs the event specific immune difficulties. I would like to but I have been quite ill. I got ill a couple of days after the White Rim Trial ride.

It has been a good illness if you are partial to those things. I don't think I have been really sick for more than four days in a row for...I can't remember. Two days off work clutching my stomach. I think I read most of an entire novel while sitting on the toilet. Great fever symptoms too. I woke drenched with sweat on Wednesday. I had to peal the sheets off of me. On Thursday I experienced such intense bloating that I repeatedly found myself picturing the scene in Alien where the proto-creature sprouts from John Hurt's stomach.

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I think I was told about the connection between the ride and my illness more times than I was wished a speedy recovery. I like to make the connection between the fact that my eldest was sick when we drove to Moab and the illness is more a testimonial to koch's postulates than voodoo exercise physiology. This has become easier now that my SO has started in with the symptoms.

Maybe I will make popcorn and tea so we can have an after diner movie night and watch Alien together.

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