Learning my limitations can be humbling. Today it was just frustrating. With the cold spell we have been experiencing, my exercise induced asthma has been a bit more provoked. Running outside when the temperatures are below 25 causes issues. My frustration sets in because I enjoy running on a cold morning when the wind is not too bad and the snow is freshly fallen. This morning when I was scheduled to run it was hovering around 22 degrees and I knew if I wanted to get my long run in it was going to be inside. I also had to get my dogs to the groomer early, so after dropping them off I headed to my gym which was just up the street.

Frustrated with having to run inside, I made the best of it by setting my iPod on a good mix of music and bringing my iPad to read while I ran. (Next Apple needs to make an iTread – a treadmill with music and iPad built in.) Last week I ran eight miles for my long run. My long runs have been tough for me to push through lately. With the half marathon seven weeks away I want to keep adding to my long run, so my goal was at least 9 miles. The first five miles went well, I held a good pace and kept my heart rate in zone two. Being on a treadmill for so long, the people on the machines around me kept changing. Just after mile five the guy no one wants to get on a treadmill near by got on the treadmill two down from me. Yes, the guy who thought he should put on cologne before exercising. I could not believe my luck. Yesterday morning in the pool I was struck in the sniffer by a gal who was wearing perfume swimming – at 7 AM in the morning! I don’t know if my sense of smell is heightened when exercising, but I am very aware when an aromatic person is near by. After about a half mile of running in a cloud of cologne I could not take it any more so I changed treadmills. Fortunately my gym is enormous and I was able to move three rows up and two machines over. No more odors. I ran 9 miles in total. I am not sure which was harder – running indoors and getting brain drain or the soreness in my hamstrings. The soreness lingers still but my brain as recovered. Next week I am bringing my inhaler if it is still this cold and running outside.

Life requires flexibility and adaptation. Which stirs in my mind the phrase “the best laid plans of mice and men often go astray.” A runner longs, if you will, for the long run. Limitations such as asthma required a little flexibility today. My longing to run outside was modified. Then I had to make a few adjustments to improve my environment… I am a planner – life in my eyes is more enjoyable with some organization and plans. My plans however do not always go as … planned. So what is a gal to do? I was not going to stay home and not run or throw in the towel and head to the locker room when the cologne wearing man came by. I adapted. I had a good run, I enjoyed the day, and my pups look fabulous.


Published by elisariva

I want to encourage everyone to follow your passions, not just what is easy. It is in overcoming hurdles and barriers that we truly test our limits and abilities. There is much more we are capable of if we only believe in ourselves.

12 thoughts on “Adapting

  1. There are so many awesome comments I could make about the perfumed guy at the gym… If I had to bet, it was Polo or Drakkar. You must have been impressed though, all chi – I just. Can’t. Go… Through with it.

    Your circumstance, while hilarious, and at the same time unfortunate, shouldn’t have to be endured… I’ll just have to remember, if I do ever go back to a gym, not to wear cologne… LOL! 😀

  2. Going to attempt my 8miles outside tomorrow…may be cold, but the 5 miles on the treadmill on Thursday was ugh…good for you to bang out 9 miles…I usually am next to the guy who cranks up the incline and speed so much he has to hold on for dear life, negating any benefit from incline and speed…oh well.

  3. I so totally know that cologne wearing guy/gal! It’s just awful! Who in their right mind says, “I’ll just pat some cologne/perfume on and now off to the gym I go!”??? Oh well, sounds like you found the same workaround I use. Move! LOL.

    Note that lately I have replaced the treadmill with an elliptical trainer. Call me crazy but I’m really liking it. In an addictive kinda way no less. 😀

  4. Awww…they DO look fabulous!

    I also have adult-onset asthma. My triggers are exercise, cold, (like you), but also strong synthetic odors like colognes. Maybe your sensitivity is not only related to the smell but also a lung reaction. Just a thought…

  5. Well done on working through it! I have a similar problem with perfume/aftershave wearers in the pool. It’s awful. On all too many occasions I have been swimming away quite happily then someone gets in who thinks they are exempt from the ‘shower before swimming’ rule and suddenly the scent of their perfume catches in the back of my throat and stops me short. Eeugh. Perhaps as Jill suggests, it is asthma related. Interesting. I just thought I was intolerant 😉

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