As my regular readers can probably tell from my flurry of posting this week, working nights covering the Pain Service has afforded me both some sleep at night and free time during the days. It’s almost like a vacation where I stay in the city and can catch up on things (house cleaning, grocery shopping, laundry, packing, signing the new lease) that can be difficult to do during a normal week. I appreciate this, especially since I have eight busy weeks ahead of me working in the ICU and doing cardiac anesthesia, two subspecialties I am particularly interested in.
I worked Monday through Friday nights (1900 to 0800), and then was off for 24 hours until Sunday morning. Today I’m working a 24 hour shift before reporting for duty in the ICU at 0700. The day has been filled doing little things like adjusting patient-controlled analgesia orders, pulling out epidurals, checking on a patient whose epidural accidentally came out while her blood was anticoagulated (we wanted to make sure she didn’t have the potentially devastating complication of an epidural hematoma), and adjusting an overly confused and somnolent patient’s medications. (Oxycodone is worth a shot to minimize unwanted side effects.)
Yesterday was a good day. After coming home, I quickly changed and went for my long run in Central Park. Two loops around made as 12 mile run. The first loop was done in 52 minutes (what I felt was a gentle pace), and the second loop, though I felt I pushed harder, took 55 minutes, bringing my total time to 107 minutes including water breaks. I’m not unhappy with this time, though I would like to work toward eight-and-a-half minute miles. And given the warm, humid weather, this was a good chance to practice disciplined hydration. I noticed that chugging six or seven gulps of water every couple of miles makes a big difference.
Because I’ve worked up a little more gradually to this long run (compared to the half-marathon I did in April), I believe it was a little easier on my body. Sure I was sore afterward, but I didn’t feel as much of an old man as I did after increasing my distances very quickly. I’m beginning to appreciate the wisdom of training carefully to avoid injury.
And lastly, a quick update about my black runner’s toe. I will spare those with a more delicate constitution a picture. Evidently it is common for runners to develop bruising both under the toenail and at the very tip of the digit. Most often, it is caused by shoes that fit too snugly, though increasing distances too quickly may also contribute. Both of these factors may apply in my case, since I tend to buy shoes that fit well. At one point, I was worried I would lose the toenail on my right second toe since it lifted as easily (and painlessly) as one might lift the hood of a Chevy. However, the brusing seems to have healed a bit over the last few days, and the toenail is reaffirming its grasp on the little fleshy nubbin.
The rest of the day was spent packing, going through paperwork, and in the evening Mauricio brought a movie over: Wes Anderson’s Rushmore. I fed him one of my Trader Joe’s BBQ Chicken pizzas, leftover salad, broccoli, and pineapple juice. (Mauricio really likes juice, I have discovered.)