The emergency inhaler helps temper the urgency I feel when I over-exert myself. But it doesn't quite open up my breathing. I still have that tight, breathing-through-a-straw sensation to a certain degree, and I don't seem to process the oxygen needed for even moderate aerobic efforts. If I become dizzy once, it's difficult to recover. When I speak of over-exerting myself, I basically mean exerting myself. Walking is fine. Running has mixed reactions. Biking, for which I'm out of shape and can't regulate my efforts as well, has been the most messy.
Although I feel somewhat assured that my rapidly declining fitness is linked to allergies that I am both working to treat and waiting to go away, I can't be certain. Lately, being outside leads to feeling bad, which is a strong de-motivator to engage in activities I love. It's a little scary, to be honest, and may have resulted in some crying in the shower after a horribly failed Sunday run. But there's also some acceptance about making it work if this is my new status quo. I realize that unless I feel a real risk of passing out (not usually), I can still muddle along in the outdoors.
Still, I enjoyed this ride and think I should do more of this, rather than fret about whether I'll ever be fit enough to race again.