**This post goes hand-in-hand with the pacing post.
Boom and bust simply means that if you do too much you’ll pay for it later. This could be a few hours later or even up to 12, 24 or 48 hours later depending on how much you ‘boomed’, for how long and your own stamina levels. It triggers an increase in symptoms and causes a flare.
Despite pacing and knowing that this boom and bust approach does not aid recovery, in fact it hinders it, I sometimes ‘boom’ and consequently ‘bust’, particularly if I am having a ‘good’ day.
Take last Saturday morning for example (it’s the following Saturday today), I felt good (1 on my scale) so I thought I’d walk to the local superstore which is about 20 minutes walk there. It was nice weather so why not?! However I did not take into account the 20 minute return journey, nor the steps and minutes I would spend in the shop to buy the 4 items on my list. I could have taken the car or waited until the next day when we would be passing said-store. But no, I am stubborn and wanted to walk. My husband said nothing, knowing full well that I would regret it later.
The walk there and buying of said items went well but I felt a little more tired. (2-3 on my scale). I buried the awareness and continued. I walked home, mostly up hill. I had a fleeting thought of ringing my husband to come get me. No. I will keep going but a little slower. I was OK until about 3.30pm that afternoon when I just ‘busted’. I couldn’t do anything and felt exhausted despite having done nothing since returning from the shop.
So, what have I learned?
Pacing is the way forward. If I am having a ‘good’ day, go for a walk but do not go further than 1% over my baseline.
Lesson learned. Although I’m sure it’ll happen again as it is very frustrating when you cannot do what you want to do despite knowing you will pay for it later.