Long COVID Micro-Olympics

The Micro-Olympics is a mindset to help me cope with long COVID.

I used to be very active. But if I’m too active now, I suffer from post exertional malaise. I get discouraged about how little I can do, even though I am pushing my body to its physical limit (while avoiding The Wall).

I now think of myself as a world-class athlete in the Long COVID Micro-Olympics. Example events are

  • taking a shower
  • getting dressed
  • walking to the curb
  • unloading the dishwasher
  • moving wet clothes to the dryer

Example endurance events are

  • the two-block stroll
  • six-minute cycle
  • sitting through dinner
  • grocery shopping

Here’s how the competition works:

  1. I come up with an event that I’m pretty sure I can complete with no problem.
  2. Try the event.
  3. If I don’t crash or feel bad any time in the next two days, then I won!

If I just felt a little bad, then that could be anxiety or adjustment to the activity and I’ll try again. If I crashed, then I avoid that activity or make it dramatically easier.

Living with long COVID is incredibly demanding physically, mentally, and emotionally. I’ve never trained for the Olympics (or anything else), so I don’t know how it compares, but man this is hard.

Let’s make a game out of it.