Sunday, June 01, 2008

Exhaustion (1):

I'm 67, but last week I didn't feel a day over 50. We had a tough deadline to meet, and several times I worked late, slept a few hours and got up early. There was a mass of detail to attend to, and it felt great to see my younger self kick in, stay awake and alert, to help our team achieve an excellent finish. I knew I would pay later.

I've been catching up on my sleep, but – days later – I know I'm still exhausted. I swim regularly, and today I got really exhausted in 35 minutes. Last weekend, before the big push at work, I swam 45 fast, effortless minutes. So what's going on?

The fascinating thing is that, when you fall back into old habits, your body can summon up the strength that goes with those habits, even if you really don't have that strength anymore. You remember how to behave, how to do the task, and how to summon the energy. If in fact your body's too old for that, you pay it back later, with a much longer recovery time. Next time you see an oldster not acting their age, amazing you with their resources, maybe that's what's happening. Keep an eye on them later. For example:

Wow, I am tired.

3 comments:

Martin Langeland said...

You have my deepest empathy.

Once read an article about coping with a young toddler by adopting the toddlers scedule: Run Run Snack Run Run Nap Run Run Snack Run Run Nap et cetera.
She found that her energy and stamina Improoved to match the toddler-- at least from an adult perspective.
Perhaps this has something or nothing to do with your post.
Thank you for writing it.
--ml

The Precision Blogger said...

MArtin,
I have some experience trying to keep up with toddlers. I always thought that was impossible. Perhaps Hell is a place where grownups try to keep up with toddlers.
- PB

Martin Langeland said...

Or it may be a place where toddlers must keep down with adults.
Depends on the old point of view maybe.
--ml