Monday, August 8

Close to Breaking

Honestly, I have not had a lot of problems with the commute during our hot streak that promises to tie the all-time record on Friday, with more forecast after that.

Friday made me nervous. It wasn't as hot as other days earlier in the week, but I felt bad. Might it be cumulative heat stress? As I progressed, I stopped at the coffee place halfway home to spread the ice water and AC break more evenly.

It wasn't until I got home that I noticed the sore throat and cough. Hmm, I don't recall heat stress causing such problems. To make the story shorter, I went to bed and pretty much stayed there all weekend. While I got no worse and certainly didn't die, the cough and chills are unpleasant for someone that rarely gets sick. My dear family did their part by bumping the thermostat up to 78. It felt like 48 to me, huddling under two blankets. Over the weekend, Chandra called to discuss some Bike Ed, and he was clearly concerned. I know my voice sounded bad.

This morning, the family begged me to drive to work. I considered it, but it has been quite a while since I've needed my parking pass and besides, if I was too sick to ride, should I go to work at all? So I went, resolving to be inspired by recent JRA "go slow" posts. Normally, I tend to ride more like Rantwick - Cat 6 racer. It worked OK on the way to work, though it really didn't slow me down all that much. I even got a text wondering if I made it in OK and I resisted the urge to reply "no habla ingles."

Then, after a fairly uneventful health day, it came time to go home. It was about 105F. While less pleasant than usual, things were tolerable until I arrived at the coffee store. Nausea! I think I really don't mind heat. At least half the trip isn't too hot. But heat and sick in combination is nasty! My stomach settled down pretty quickly and I was back to feeling chilled by the time I was done. Today was pretty close to a breaking point. As I rode, I wondered things like whether I was sweating enough. I took scant comfort from the observation from one of my coworkers that throwing up on a bike would be much easier than if it happened in a closed motor vehicle.

Still, my instinct was valid - if I'm too sick to ride, that is a message I should not ignore. I'll take it day by day, but on the way home, I'll take inspiration from JRA rather than Rantwick. Or I'll stay in bed. OTOH, my nickname is "the idiot that mom married."


Oldfool said...

I just got over those symptoms and it wasn't fun.
I think you should be a real man and ride in the heat to work and spread the disease around.
Remember, life is short.

Steve A said...

People didn't argue with me when I didn't go to meetings. I do think I am past any contagious stage. The weekend in bed helped. Your comment about the "not fun" was less than inspirational. An occasional lie is OK. I'll know soon enough either way and if I'm contagious, driving will not change things.

Big Oak said...

People don't argue with me when I don't go to meetings, but it's not because I'm sick. Once you're better, see if they've missed you. If they have, you're probably a really good guy.

I hope you feel better soon. Sick and heat really suck. Especially at the same time.

John Romeo Alpha said...

Unless I get some kind of lung hacking nasty cough with it, drinking gallons of liquids and riding my bike makes me feel better even when sick (which is rare anyway). Feel better soon, just don't over, or under, do it.

limom said...

Take it easy; live to ride another day.
If you know what I mean.

Apertome said...

Sounds pretty harsh to me. I had a similar experience, only it was in winter. I don't mind the cold -- even like it, sometimes, but when sick it just did me in.

I hope you feel better soon. I'm glad you're dealing with the heat well, aside from that anyway.

RANTWICK said...

" throwing up on a bike would be much easier than if it happened in a closed motor vehicle "

That should be in every cycling advocacy pamphlet from now on. I mean it.

Hope you're feeling better.

Steve A said...

It certainly would smell better on a hot day. I ignored the siren call to speed today and the lure of hot coffee on the way home. I was repaid by minimal nausea. I'm not sure I agree that should be used in any context where it could be interpreted to encourage really drunken cycling, though even in this case, the drunk is unlikely to take a cute family of Quebecois on his way out.

Steve A said...

Rantwick, listen to the news and gems appear. Nobody on a bike suffers from "Hot Car Death" which was a feature. It tore my heart out about the little girl, banging her fist against the window before the end. No such danger on a bike.

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