Having blamed everything about my dire running ability on my fitness, weight, breathing and deciding to do something about all 3 the first stage of my plan was to get the breathing checked out.
I duly made an appointment with the nurse at my health centre, not appreciating how long the process would take. Anyway, first blow into a machine that tells how much I can expel, apparently not too bad. 80% is the limit of being able to cope naturally, I score 89%.
So far so good, then comes the blow out as hard as you can part, only it isn't just blowing is it? There is a 1 inch diameter tube in your mouth and trying to breathe out hard with that there is nigh on impossible, still apparently I make 80%, with wheeze still intact and a post expel cough to match the 40 a day smoker.
So I am borderline for asthma, but not quite there, hence I guess why when I tried an inhaler in the past it had little or no effect on me. Still, next stage, pump me full of salbutimol make me wait 20 mins then try again just to see if it is anything that's asthma induced and that can be cured with a dose of ventolin. In fact I had several doses of it, so should be feeling seriously light headed.
We try again.
Very similar results and the conclusion is that it may (or may not) be asthma (useful) and that, however the nurse tried to gloss over it, I have the lungs of a 64 year old and a graphic representation of my breathing that should, for the figures I have produced, be a more straight line tail off, though mine shows a nice concave curve. It seems that "Houston there is a problem" we just don't know what it is yet.
Next step. Appointment with doctor to check out potential allergies and any other problems that might cause me to wheeze like a 64 year old 40 a day smoker every time I start to run. Now if I can find who did that transplant in my youth I would like to tell him off.
I am hopeful that planning the diet (maybe the weight loss will help) and upping the exercise (fitness has to help) will both improve the age of my lungs (i.e return them to nearer my actual age) and maybe reunite them with the correct birth certificate.
Why do i think the road to London 2012 will be an eventful one?