We're a little crazy, about science!

Long experiment aftermath

Well yesterday happened and I can feel it. Everything hurts at the moment, but I knew I was going to be sore today so there is absolutely nothing serious planned today besides maybe cooking something for dinner, maybe. Leftovers are a way of life in research, leftovers and protein bars. I wish I were joking, both hospital-PI and I brought protein bars as a “lunch” yesterday, which may or may not have been eaten as we ran from one part of the hospital to the next.

Last time we tried this experiment, I was left in seriously bad pain. Like couldn’t sleep because it hurt so bad. The experiment, which was several months back, was a hard one! Okay it was like two months ago, but time doesn’t exist anymore now that we have… 1, 2, 3 pandemics (well technically 1 pandemic and 2 epidemics… for now anyway), so who’s counting? Certainly not me! Anyway point being, since then I’ve been getting ready for yesterday and I think it helped.

Mostly, I think I over extended myself, quite literally. I think the pain I had was due to the fact that I had to squat for 10 minutes or so at a time to plug things in. Experiments like the one we did yesterday (and however long ago the last one was) are very physical. There’s so many wires and every wire has to be run a certain way, things need to be plugged into the equipment just right, and we need to make sure we don’t hit, knock, or otherwise dislodge the cables. So I believe what happened was I overstretched my quads and anytime I sat or went to sleep they would tighten up to the point that they were painful.

Nothing I did fixed the problem, so this time around I figured I would stretch before. But not just before, every single day for the past however many months it’s been since that last experiment I’ve taken the time to stretch. So far I think it’s helped. I haven’t had the same pain, yet anyway, as I did after the last experiment, but there’s still one more experiment in a few weeks so I don’t want to say that fixed all my problems.

Currently everything is just sore, but I can live with sore. It definitely did not impede my sleep, which was good. But I’m still going to be cautious about all this. Today the most labor intensive thing I’m doing is possibly cooking. If I don’t then the award for most labor intensive thing will go to my blogging. Seriously, it’s a lazy day because when I finished yesterday it was basically 36 hours nonstop. Next round won’t be like that, but this week for whatever reason was particularly packed with stuff to do.

Right now though, I’m not even THINKING about how to do the next one better (although most of the work for it is already done now), I’m more focused on recovering from yesterday. I may even go crazy and not do anything tomorrow, despite my dissertation time crunch right now. We’ll see, because while working on my dissertation is a lot of mental work, it’s not a lot of physically demanding work, at least not at this data analysis stage.

So if you’ll excuse me I’m going to hurry up and rest. But this is a semi-regular and not-so-friendly reminder that none of us are robots and even robots need a break before they fall apart. So get some rest on a regular basis, especially if you find yourself pushing hard.

4 responses

  1. Have a good rest. I probably need to take your closing advice more often myself. It’s just hard to figure out how, when there’s so little time to do everything.

    I have been very burnt out these past few weeks – mostly mentally, it’s hard to concentrate on anything. I’m trying to find ways to at least do different tasks so I can give that a chance to ease up.

    Liked by 1 person

    September 17, 2022 at 4:11 pm

    • Yes, take a break! You’re working too hard!! I know the feeling though, there’s just not enough hours in the day to do all the work you’re expected to do.

      I’m really sorry to hear, mental burnout is worse than physical burnout IMO at least when I’m just sore or something I can sit and work on something, you can’t even do that much when you’re mentally exhausted. Maybe just force yourself to take a bit of a break, you’re not going to get anything done if you try and push yourself.

      Liked by 1 person

      September 18, 2022 at 12:05 pm

      • Belated thanks for this. It felt a bit like getting a hug.
        I did make myself slow down a little yesterday (not a lot, but a little) and I’ve been feeling more lucid at work today. I’ll try to keep it up until matters improve.

        Liked by 1 person

        September 19, 2022 at 8:13 pm

      • Aww! Thank you, I’m glad you felt that way. I’m also happy to hear you took it easier. I hope you continue to feel better!

        Liked by 1 person

        September 20, 2022 at 7:06 pm

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