Covid journey

I am keeping track so anyone who gets COVID for the first time can see what one person’s timeline looks like.

Me: 63 year old male, 6′ 0″, 195 lb, vaccinated, boosted (2) and an omicron booster in September of 2022.

I do NOT know (for sure) where I got it; my unmasked meeting were:

colleagues (2) on Friday 6 January, basketball game bathroom 7 January, football game bathroom 8 January, trip with a friend (8 January) visit with 4 other people (evening of 8 January)

10 January (Tuesday) a planned workout turned out to be much, much harder than normal.

10 January (Tuesday) burning eyes and nose, onset of fatiuge

10-11 January frequent urination while trying to sleep. Fatigue, body aches, burning nose and eyes. Tested: very dark positive.

11 January (Wednesday) : fatigue, body aches, fever (99 to 101 F) Felt like death warmed over. Started Paxlovid.

11-12 January: another rough night; some drainage.

12 January: some drainage, fatigue, but improved symptoms

13 January: better night. Some symptoms.

14-15 January (weekend) Better still; just a tad tired, and that is it.

15 January: tested. Positive line is there but very much fainter. Ended Paxlovid (5 day course, 11-15 January)

16-17 January: *almost* back to normal.

17 January: positive line is oh-so-faint…does not show up in the camera.

18 January: taught class online. Vowed to return on the 20’th. Looking good!

18 January evening: “not so fast”. burning eyes and nose comes back. Mild fatigue starts to set in. Drainage starts; nose is like a spigot of clear, runny fluid. Ruin another mask with so much drainage.

18-19 January: (Wed-Thursday) rough night. coughing and drainage. Mild fatigue (NOT like day 1)

19 test: strong test line after only 5 minutes. Fatigue, light body aches, drainage, etc.

20 Taught online. Some fatigue, light drainage. Napped on and off after classes.

21 Jan (Saturday) tested. Different type of test. Emphatic positive (red line) Drainage is way down, burning eyes are down, feeling better but not “well.”

22 Jan (Sunday) slept through the night sans NyQuil. Taking nothing regular. Normal urination patterns, very little coughing and residual congestion; not much. Still felt anxious upon waking up. slightly more energy. Fainter test line.

23 January (Monday) woke up a bit tired…somewhat “allergy eyes and nose” but improved with morning coffee. Normal sleep..ok, still sort of a “second sleep” pattern but none of the frequent urinaton.

24 January: fitful night; lots of urination. Felt I was going to test positive the next morning. I did. It was faint, but there. Need to rest more and drink more.

I feel as if I am in purgatory. I don’t feel poorly enough to warrant slacking so much, but I am still contagious. And yeah, I tire easily..very easily. Even teaching online classes takes something out of me. Attitude is not good. Tired of this crap. Wish I had been more careful; won’t make that mistake again.

25 January: BinaxNow tests; I screwed up one test with too much liquid (tough to get the drops to be 6) and didn’t trust the second test (though it showed negative). This is the third: negative. The night before: some frequent urination; stomach upset at about midnight. Felt great throughout the day; taught online, did chores, just a tiny bit tired.

26 January. Negative (though mostly line on one side) Felt good enough to go to the office and work.

27 January. Negative. Taught and worked a full day, with PT, 5 sets of 20 push ups and a 1 mile walk after lunch. And..that wiped me out. Am tired. I feel I am out of it, but strength is low.

28 January. Negative. Did PT (leisurely) and walked 2 miles at 15:00 per mile (15:15, 14:45) on mostly snow free roads. Low energy; napped in the afternoon. Note: sinus headache when I woke up but two Tylenol were sufficient.

Physical therapy notes: 20 Jan: back exercises in my isolation room.

21 Jan: back and shoulder on the porch (30’s) and 25 pull up repetitions (20 of them modified, one “Honest” set of 5)

Pulse oximeter: 97-98. Not an issue. No wheezing, etc.

Misery idex:

Death days: 1 (11 January)

Man-flu achy days: 5 so far (12, 13 January, 18, 19, 20 January)

Cold-caliber annoying days 3 so far (14 January 21 January 22 January )

“I feel well” days 3 so far (15, 16 and 17 January: fool’s gold).

What COVID rebound looks like

Yes, last DOSE, not “does”. Brain still foggy.

Details: Jan 10: workout harder than it should have been. Burning eyes and nose. Night: hard to sleep, frequent urination, felt awful.

Jan 11: body aches, fatigue. Tested: black test line. Started Paxlovid. fever hit 101.

Jan 13: great reduction of symptoms, cough almost gone; felt much better.

Jan 15: felt really good. Last full does of Paxlovid.

Jan 17: line all but gone; felt I was out of it.

Jan 18: late evening: lots of discharge (runny nose). slight body aches. No fever, but very congested; cough returns.

Jan 19: black test line is back. Slept on and off between “work from home” stuff. Symptoms NOT as bad as on the 11’th; sort of like day 2- day 3 again. Not a complete backslide

Jan 20: today: feeling a bit better, but watery eyes and a slight cough. No fever. A bit flushed.

Rebound infection

Wednesday 11 Jan: Felt like death. Heavy dark line.

Thursday: somewhat annoying, but fever gone.

Friday: line diminished, feeling stronger.

Saturday-Tuesday: test line almost gone…feeling reasonably good but not perfect.

Tuesday night: trouble sleeping. Some light coughing.

Wednesday night (18 January) uh oh…burning eyes and a lot of drainage.

Thursday morning: itchy eyes, decent sleep. Gunked up.

Now for Jan 19: “It’s baaaack”. I really didn’t need to test…this positive appeared by 5 minutes.

Fortunately, this is common (ok, that isn’t fortunate) but is more annoying than dangerous. I am isolating to keep this crap from others.


Covid recovery: I seem to have some drainage..mild cough, a moderately runny/stuffy nose. I am a little tired; fitful sleep and I did teach

I am a little more tired this evening but I did more, in terms of work. I’ll have to pace myself.

Not much of a walk but perhaps too much? It wasn’t a strain. The exercise I did with PT was pull ups.

Almost there

The test line in the third test IS there, though you can’t really make it out in a photo. It is very, very faint.

Given that this is day 6 I did mask up and walk for just over 1 mile at 17:25; it was a super easy walk, and followed full PT and push ups: 4 sets of 20.

I kept the door open in the living room to get some air flow. Classes start tomorrow and I’ll start online.

Still in COVID jail

I worked almost a full day on courses and committee work. All of it was from home. …on my bed. If I work in my downstairs office, I mask.

Jan 11 was my “day zero” where I had a peak viral load test; the question is: did I have it before that? I know that I was weak the day before; I still think it was the weekend sporting events.

But, I suppose it does not matter right now. What do I do going forward?

Test tomorrow morning; a positive means I am online this Wednesday. And certainly next week’s basketball games will be enjoyed via the TV or computer. And I am waiting for a negative test to start walking again, and we are talking 1-2 miles at a time. I do NOT want to make myself breathe hard. Same for lifting: light reps, deliberate reps, zero strain at first.

Today: almost full PT for my back and shoulders, and 5 sets of pull ups: mostly 5 singles, but one direct set of 5 too.

On my way back

I miscalculated. Wednesday, Jan 11, was “day 0” and today marks the end of “day 4”, and my 5’th day of Paxlovid. Signs: slightly tired (did more project work), oh so slight congestion (unremarkable in other circumstances), perhaps a very slight “chest burn” when laying down. No fever.

Progress is undeniable but the “positive line” is still there.

I did much of my PT outside (almost all of the exercises) and push ups: 20, 25, 25, with the first and 3’rd sets being on the incline. These tired me out oh-so-slightly.

Friends with wacky beliefs

First: more ab work and then 5 sets of either 5 singles or 5 reps of pull ups outside.

I was ultra conservative on the effort: little to none at all. Back notes: some foot tingles later in the evening.

Today: better. Last night’s sleep was strange…some post nasal drip coughing and a weird anxiety but, overall, it went fine..if boring.

I did finish an admin task. I hope to work on course preparation tomorrow.

Now to the topic. It would be easy if people who have wacky beliefs were just all around crackpots. But, that is often not the case.

You have the excellent engineer who is a Bible thumping creationist. You have the salt of the earth person who would do anything for you, who is an anti-vaxxer..that was BEFORE covid. And you have the person who was vaccinated, now turned against it who is now pro ivermectin (based on the testimony of some rural Texas pharmacist)…who uses anecdotal evidence in favor of ivermectin and against the vaccine.

Guess what: I got my 5’th booster in September 2022, which is about the time my spondylolisthesis started to improve rapidly. So, should I consider this booster a recommended spondylolisthesis treatment? (of course not; I have to say that, given the way internet users are)

And so it goes; otherwise good, reasonably competent, successful people have wacky beliefs about one thing or another.

This post isn’t about why people sometimes fall into this trap or even how hard it is to draw a reasonable conclusion about truths (which are often STATISTICAL truths, not absolute truths for each individual). This isn’t even about “liberal vs conservative” crackpottery; sadly, crackpot ideas are bipartisan.

It is more about the fact that our friends, and, yes, us, hold some pretty nutty ideas; I’d probably be embarrassed to see mine exposed.

still angered but

I wanted so much to get through COVID unscathed just to have, well, bragging rights. It wasn’t to be.

But thanks to the ability to rest (did a few hours of easy admin tasks) and Paxlovid..and other medicines, I am feeling much better. Not out of the woods as yet; I can feel my body warming up as I type this. I’ll take some more Tylenol; it has been effective.

Energy level: up from the day before; cleaned off the wife’s car, took out the trash …wait, that was yesterday…bad memory….

Did most of my core routine, then push ups: 10, 20, 20, as shown. Nothing dramatic; I did NOT want to get too out of breath.

Note: Tuesday: noticed that my workout was harder than it should have been; burning eyes, nose
Tuesday night: fatigue
Early Wed. morning: woken up by frequent need to urinate, body fatigue, aches, finally tested…massive positive
Online appointment, got Paxlovid prescribed.
Wed: slept off and on, felt awful; fever ranged from 99-101 for a lot of the day.

Wed night: slept better
Thursday; felt better; fever gone, but I was weak.

Today; stronger still, MUCH better, though far from 100 percent.
If you must know: fully vaccinated, both original boosters, Omicron booster too (5 shots)

COVID finally got me

I think I let my guard down and went maskless in a public bathroom at a sporting event (basketball on Saturday, football on Sunday). Nevertheless on Tuesday, a routine workout felt way too hard (a 15:30 walking pace felt like 13) but I did not tie it into any specific thing.

Timeline: where I possibly got it:

basketball game on Saturday

Football game on Sunday (restroom?) or perhaps a visit with a family afterward.


Tuesday morning: unexpectedly hard workout; modest walking pace felt very hard.

Tuesday evening: itchy eyes, burning nose; feeling of angst

Tuesday late night: extremely frequent need to urinate (once an hour?), body aches, extreme fatigue; sort of “ran a hard marathon the day before” type of fatigue.

Tested at about 3:30 AM: see the above.

Wednesday day: fever came; climbed to 101. Fatigue. chills. Body aches. Started Paxlovid. Slept off and on.

Thursday: fever under control by Tylenol. A bit more energy; even did my back exercises in my room. Bad taste in my mouth due to Paxlovid. Slight cough.

I am hoping I test negative on Monday morning; I’d like to be able to start classes in person next week. Of course, I will wear a mask and be more diligent about masking.

The takeaway I almost didn’t test because, at the time I tested, I only had the nose burn and watery, itchy eyes. No loss of taste, no loss of smell, no cough, and really not much nasal discharge at all. I tested because I “felt awful”, had bodyaches and way too frequent urination.

Note: I got vaccinated and had all of the boosters, including the omicron specific one in September 2022. I also had the flu shot.