Tuesday, September 8, 2009


I've shifted gears on the fitness front. Usually, this time of year, I've dropped about 15 pounds, the result of riding over spring and summer. No such luck this year, though I've ridden hard. What happened? In March I started Lyrica (pregabalin), a seizure med that is experimentally used to treat central pain syndrome -- from which I increasingly suffer, due to adolescent traumatic brain injury and aging. Lyrica has helped with pain and improved my sleep architecture, but it added pounds and blurred my vision. So I'm weaning myself from the drug and increasing my fitness regimen. I've hired a personal trainer and nutritional consult; bought a high-end Retul bike fit; cleaned-up our home workout room; and am riding as intensely as ever.

Results so far are promising. I do weight training twice a week, ride 100-200 miles/week, and have trimmed my diet. My weight is down a few ticks, and should drop more quickly as my muscle build/burn rate amps. With the weaning, my pain (mostly left peripheral with some spasticity) is increased but tolerable for now. In a couple weeks, I meet with the folks at Georgetown to discuss an intrathecal baclofen pump -- an implanted device to push a low-dose into my spine. Given my current tolerance, I think this may not yet be appropriate, but it's good to understand the option.

Life is good. I feel bad that this pain stuff has taken some engagement off the table -- fewer good days to enjoy with Care and the boys, lost athleticism. The human condition.


Unknown said...

Congrats on sticking with the new way of life. I wish you well with what ever pain management regimen you ultimately decide on. Keep up the bloggin! You're one of the more interesting ones, LOL.

Jim Wilson said...

Thanks, Tony. I like to think that I haven't changed my way of life much, but I'm responding to an ongoing physiological change. In the last couple years, I've had onset of some nasty stuff that I'm working to keep at bay.

Looking forward to your Univest work! Cheers, Jim