Recap: I have no idea what is about to unfold
It’s now January 2013, 2 months before my 40th Birthday & how I describe the “BANG” happens. I’m no longer able to get through my workouts. I’m only going at half pace and I’m exhausted. This happens so quickly, like the flick of switch. What’s happening? Am I coming down with something, a bug, a cold? I’ll be right, I tell myself to just keep going.
Apart from the mould, I hardly ever get sick, rarely catch any bugs going around and are pretty resilient. I don’t even have a regular GP, that’s how often I don’t need to go to the Doctors.
:: LESSON – Listen to your body, it talks to you & gives you signs
:: TRUTH – This was one of my first warning signs, my body was telling me to STOP! but I’m not listening
This continues through February but is getting worse. I’m now getting concerned, this is unusual, why am I so fatigued & I’m not talking a little tired. I’m talking I don’t know if I have the energy to lift my foot to the brake pedal in the car after my workout, complete exhaustion. Somethings off & I feel heavier “have I gained weight?”
I’m jumping on the scales every 2nd day & I’m gaining weight FAST. It starts off as 4kg in 4 weeks! This is whilst training 5 times a week (high cardio) & still eating a very clean, low calorie diet.
My head is saying “I’m not putting on weight again, eat less”. My eating hadn’t changed by the way, an increase in calories was not why I was gaining weight.
I’m thinking I have to work out more and reduce my calories to NIP THIS IN THE BUD…. so that’s what I do. I start the beginning of an unhealthy spiral with food, exercise & negative self talk, that without me realising it, drives my body into starvation mode and my mind into a form of obsession / insanity.
It’s 6 weeks until my 40th Birthday, plenty of time to remove 4kg. So the next 6 weeks I push myself harder at boxing & eat less.
I knew I could lose 1kg per week but I’ll lose it quicker because I’m going HARDER and have further reduced my calorie intake. I’ve added another Optifast shake into the mix, that’s now 2 per day instead of 1 with salad/veg & protein for dinner and no starchy carbs.
I’m using the simple equation of less input and more output = a loss, it’s simple maths right? Aah no, not in this case & maybe not in yours either but I’m still unaware of this.
: LESSON- Every body is different and will respond differently, especially when it isn’t functioning normally
: TRUTH- Increasing to 2 shakes per day made everything worse. My body was needing more energy in the form of calories……. not less. Two shakes is 320 calories.
Six weeks later and it’s now my birthday. I only manage to lose 1 of those 4kg’s. The pants I want to wear on my birthday are too tight, I’m disheartened & still really tired.
I decide I had better go to the Dr, maybe my Irons low or something? So I go to a bulk bill Dr to see whats going on.
Me on my 40th Birthday, fuzzy I know but it’s the only one I have
This is the start of the human pin cushion, the blood tests & investigations start, which down the track leads to monthly bloods for over a year.
I ask- “How’s my Iron”
Dr- “Normal” (I’m looking at him dumbfounded) “All your tests are normal, everything looks ok”.
This stumps me, something was clearly off & to be honest I didn’t feel like I was taken seriously. I guess, I was a size 10 healthy looking girl who is complaining that she’s put on 3 kilos & can’t get it off. I felt judged, like It was ridiculous for me to even be at the Doctors. This started in January and it’s now April, 12 weeks of exhaustion and weight gain.
Why am I so tired? Why can’t I all of a sudden get through my workouts & why am I gaining weight & not able to lose it? I’m training 5 times per week! Eating really clean and expending a lot of energy?
I leave with no answers- everything is normal, including my weight, I am a normal healthy woman.
I’m kind of blank, a little dumb-founded. What do I do now? I know something isn’t right, I can feel it, something is off. I talk to my mum and she suggests I go back to the Naturopath, maybe she will detect something, great idea!
I have a love for Naturopaths, they delve into the nitty-gritty and get right into the finer details and I think this is exactly what Is needed.
I have a Biofeedback SCIO Session at the Naturopath, I’ve had this done before and had spot on results, actually it found the mould 6 months before I visually seen it in my apartment. The Biofeedback Machine says- low Iron and Thyroid not working properly.
Me- “Can’t be, I’ve just had bloods done for Iron, it’s normal. No idea about the thyroid but I’ve never had a thyroid problem before.”
Naturopath- Doesn’t say anything and continues with the SCIO Session.
At this point, I don’t even know what the Thyroid does. I’ve heard of it but that’s about it. By the time the scan has completed it has come up 5 times that may Iron is low & something is not right with my Thyroid.
The Naturopath directs me straight to a female Dr specialising in the Thyroid, I need more blood work done. Off I go, I have to wait 5 weeks to get an appointment.
I end up very used to this waiting game, always waiting weeks and months to get appointments with practitioners. Seems like there’s lots of sick people out there.
I’ve now gained 9kg and I’m freaking out, stressed & to be honest, scared. This is consuming every second of my mind, what the hell is going on, I’m really worried about this unexplained 9kg. I can feel this is moving into a steam train that I’m not going to be able to stop & that’s exactly what happens.
I’m still training and eating like a rabbit and I’m still gaining weight & gaining it FAST. It honestly feels like the harder I go the faster I gain…..??
: LESSON- This is exactly what’s happening, but I’m still unaware, because just doesn’t compute, right?
: TRUTH- My body is now screaming at me to STOP exercising & consume more calories as I have no energy to burn. I have no idea this is what I should do & continue to push even harder.
I’m upset, the new wardrobe I’ve just spent hundreds on no longer fits me & I can feel I’m losing control. I’m terrified I’m going to put all of this weight back on and absolutely DETERMINED not to.
Nothing I’m doing is working, I’m even running on a treadmill now as well! I HATE running. I tell myself a girls gotta do what a girl has to do & if I have to fu*!#en run, THEN RUN! This is on top of my 5 boxing sessions. So lots of fat burning cardio going on here and lots more exhaustion too.
My 5 week wait is up, I get to see the recommended Dr who thinks my thyroid gland is a slightly swollen and sends me for blood tests.
I need to wait 3 weeks for the bloods as they need to go to a speciality lab in Queensland, then I can return to see her. All I’m thinking is this 3 weeks wait is another 3 kgs gained & I’m getting uptight & anxious, I want everyone to bloody hurry the **** up!
Over the next 3 weeks the Doctor wanted me to take my temperature with a mercury thermometer under my armpit, every morning before I get out of bed and record the temps on a chart. This is one of the really old textbook ways of checking the function of the Thyroid.
I can’t remember the readings now but they were way lower than what they should’ve been.
This made sense to me as I had become cold of late and had trouble warming up. This later progressed to “I’m freezing all the time and I get through an entire Melbourne Summer with my winter bedding on – I’m cold”.
Those of you who are not familiar with an Aussie Summer- we get frequent days of 38 to 40 degrees celsius = hot!
I go back to the Doctor in 3 weeks but not all the blood tests are back. She observes my body temperatures and says that the temperatures are definately consistent with a Thyroid problem, & that my Thyroid is still a little swollen, however we need to wait for the blood tests to see the lab results.
That was the last I saw of this Doctor, she unexpectedly left the practice. The Nurse told me over the phone that my thyroid blood tests had come back & were all normal.
So what do I do now? I try to go back to my Naturopath but she has retired and moved to the country! I’m literally lost as to what to do and where to turn. I’m also feeling terrible, worse, & have more symptoms. I now have indigestion & feel sick all the time. This gets so severe I can’t consume anything without nearly vomiting, including coffee and I can’t bend over at all or I will vomit.