A status stream consisting of brief updates.

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  • I attended a scheduled appointment with my gastroenterologist this morning. My full blood count, erythrocyte sedimentation rate, and C-reactive protein were all normal. My ulcerative colitis remains in clinical remission. The plan is to continue my current dose of Salofalk, i.e. 1 gram b.d., and repeat the bloods in three months, with a view to reduce the dose of Salofalk to 500 grams b.d. if all goes well.

  • Having rested for a straight 11 days – my last workout was on October 7, 2020 – I went out for a slow jog this afternoon. 6.94 km in 48 minutes 40 seconds. I sprained my back but the pain, spasm, and mobility have been improved a lot and I thought I should resume some form of activity before my body gets too deconditioned. The downtime gave me the opportunity to do a lot of work on some websites.

  • Day 5 of an extended layoff from exercise. My lower back is considerably less stiff but there is sharp, fairly severe pain in the lumbar vertebrae in some positions and with some movements, like laughing or sneezing. I’m encouraged the erector spinae are loosening up, after being stiff like a board for a few days. I’ll only be doing some light stretching later today.

  • Today is the second day in a row I have not been able to do any form of exercise due to incapacitating low back pain. The consolation is that, with the extra desk time, I could complete the finishing touches on the refreshed Teh & Associates website and launch it today, one day ahead of schedule.

  • Having taken a rest day yesterday, I expected to recover from the low back pain that I was experiencing. Alas, the pain is still there. I went ahead and rowed 72 minutes this evening. It has been raining the entire day, ruling out any possibility of a run or ride.

  • I did a late night row last night – 72 minutes – finishing a little before 1 a.m. By doing so, I had had some form of workout (all more than 70 minutes) for five consecutive days. The tasks that have been consuming most of my time outside usual work commitments concern the upgrade of a couple of websites in my portfolio. An entirely voluntary process and something I rather enjoy, but it does take out a large chunk of my discretionary time.

  • I had a scheduled repeat PSA test yesterday and a follow-up appointment with my urologist yesterday morning. Yesterday’s PSA level was 1.25 ng/mL (normal range: 0–2.5), even lower than the 1.75 ng/mL on June 3, 2020. My urologist suggested I try stopping the Hytrin, which I had been taking every night. I skipped the Hytrin last night without any untoward effect. I think my urinary tract woes are truly behind me. My next appointment with the urologist is in a year’s time, i.e. October 1, 2021. I’ll have a repeat PSA test at that time.

  • Yesterday marked the sixth consecutive day of either rowing or running for at least 60 minutes, which is quite satisfactory for me considering my goal of getting some exercise on more days and my heavy work schedule. In the last six days, I had rowed or run a little more than 7 hours in total.

  • Today’s workout was a 60-minute row followed by a 32-minute run, with a 30-minute break in-between. There were no issues, like pain, any where but I ran at the same pace as on my last outing. The achievement of the day was that this was the fourth consecutive day of some exercise activity. Reducing the length of my rowing sessions was probably the main contributor.

  • Pressed for time again and with my rectus abdominis aching slightly from yesterday’s post-row abs workout session, I repeated what I did yesterday: rowed 60 minutes, some core work afterwards, and called it a day.

  • Rowed 60 minutes and did some core work. Didn’t run today. I’m low on energy today. Struggled pretty much throughout the row, from the 5-minute mark onwards. Had a quick look at this month’s stats on Strava post-row – I’m still on track to do more than 30 hours of some form of exercise this month. In addition to the greater number of hours (I completed about 26 hours in August), I believe the overall quality of my workouts this month is better than that of those last month.

  • Rowed for 60 minutes, took a 20-minute break, and ran 5.3 km. During the short break, I ummed and ahhed on whether to go out; I had mild low back pain and a lot of office work to complete. I’m glad I went out – the weather outside was cool and the run was enjoyable. I took it easy, finishing in just under 32 minutes. Far from my fastest time for this route but the relaxed pace was the pragmatic choice to avoid injury.

  • In an effort to improve my sense of well-being, I tried kombucha for the first time two weeks ago. The results were not as I had expected. Drinking only about 150 ml per day, I felt fine on the first two days, but on Day 3, I experienced a distinctly depressed mood. Because nothing else, e.g. my diet, exercise, daily activities, had changed, I presumed the kombucha was the offending agent, so I stopped taking it. The weird feeling of apathy went away over the next few days. My conclusion is: kombucha – at least from this manufacturer – isn’t right for me. The kombucha was pineapple-flavored, but I don’t think that was the main problem.

    A glass bottle containing pineapple kombucha in the refrigerator
    :small_red_triangle:Pineapple kombucha I purchased from a neighborhood store on September 9, 2020, to which my body did not react well.

  • On February 7, 2020…

    :small_red_triangle:Excerpts from President Donald Trump's call with legendary investigative journalist Bob Woodward on February 7, 2020.

    TRUMP: Now it’s turning out, it’s not just old people Bob, but just today and yesterday some startling facts came out. It’s not just old, older –

    WOODWARD: Yeah, exactly.

    TRUMP: It’s plenty of young people. But look what’s going on in –

    On the same day (February 7, 2020), there had been zero US deaths publicly attributed to SARS-CoV-2. However, one person who died in Santa Clara County on February 6 was posthumously identified as dying from COVID-19 weeks later after an autopsy.

    On September 21, 2020…

    :small_red_triangle:US President Donald Trump speaking at an election campaign rally in Swanton, Ohio, on September 21, 2020.

    Take your hat off to the young because they have a hell of an immune system. But it affects virtually nobody. It’s an amazing thing. By the way, open your schools. Everybody, open your schools.

    —President Donald J. Trump

    On September 22, 2020, the US death toll from COVID-19 crossed the 200,000 mark.

  • I stopped eating German rye sourdough bread on August 30, 2020, after three consecutive orders (about 10 days’ worth) were filled with product that was noticeably lighter, which made me think they changed the recipe. Perhaps too much wheat flour and/or yeast were added. The bread tasted different and was less dense and softer. Most importantly, the bread caused abdominal bloating post-consumption. My last order was collected on August 28 and we finished the bread on August 30. I’m now on the lookout for another source of high-quality sourdough bread.

  • Completed a 9.11 km ruck around the neighborhood. My first ruck for many months. Picked up 5 kg of brown rice from Tesco, and carried it home in my backpack on the final 3.55 km.

  • Aborted a plan to go out for a run this evening due to persistent muscle aches since this morning. Probably another episode of delayed-onset muscle soreness (DOMS) after yesterday’s super effort. I did 85–90 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise on each of the last three days. I’ll consider today a rest day and resume exercise tomorrow.

  • In the past few months, and until three days ago, my exercise routine had mainly consisted of running or rowing. The duration of my workouts had been climbing steadily, and it reached a point where I was doing one of these activities (rowing or running) for about 85 minutes at one sitting. The penalty for this type of exercise routine was not being able to exercise for more than 3 consecutive days, sometimes requiring a rest day after only two consecutive days of exercise. So three days ago, I decided to do something different – I rowed for 60 minutes and followed that up with a 5 km run. It felt good. Because I was pressed for time on September 20, I simply rowed for 85 minutes so that I could complete some work later in the evening. Yesterday evening (September 21), I rowed for 60 minutes and ran 5.24 km. I felt fast but it was tough towards the end. I later found out I had run my fastest 5km recorded on Strava! :muscle:

    Strava record of September 21, 2020 run showing best estimated 5k effort.
    :small_red_triangle:Results of my run on September 21, 2020, as recorded on Strava.

  • My first microblog post. A microblog, such as this, allows me to quickly add small updates – these posts aren’t consistent with those on my blog, which tend to have more substantial content and which take much longer to write up. I’ve never been a fan of Tumblr, Twitter, or Facebook status updates.

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