Blog changes

Thanks to everyone who followed Training Because I Can! over the last nine years. This blog started with Addison's Disease, hypothyroidism and a crazy idea of doing an Ironman distance triathlon. My life has changed and so has this blog. I am using this blog strictly for Addison's Support topics from here on out. I hope to continue providing people with hints for living life well with adrenal insufficiency.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

It's catching up with me

The Vineman & travel during the first week of August have caught up with me. I'm very tired. Yesterday I was unable to do my workout as planned. Today I did my run but I can tell I'm going to pay for it later today. I wanted you Addisonian's to know that I get super tired too!

I'll basically be useless for the rest of the day and probably asleep and hour or two earlier than I usually go to sleep.

My hope is that this tiredness trend goes away quickly. Sometimes I wonder if I am really sick, if I really do have Addison's Disease. It's days (especially multiple days or weeks) that make me realize I DO have Addison's.

Being tired with Addison's is very different from regular tired. It's a tired that goes to your bones and makes ALL of you muscles ache, you eyes feel like closing and your stomach upset. You just feel like crawling into bed and not coming out until your energy has returned because you know you're virtually useless to anyone and everyone as you are.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007


I've had lots of questions from Addisonian's about how I adjusted my meds for training and the race. I'm going to put my training & race protocol here (I'm cutting and pasting from emails if this looks redundant to anyone!).

Keep in mind, I am not a doctor. Consult your own doctor about increasing exercising or changing the way you take your medications. I actually DID talk to my doctor about my meds. Hard to believe but true.
I ALWAYS DIVIDE MY DOSES OF HC. 10 mg at 6 am, 10 mg at 11 am and 5 mg at 2-3 pm. This works best for me, it might not work best for you.
Pre-Training: 20 mg hydrocortisone (HC), 12.5 mg DHEA and .05 mcg Florinef (Summer) .025 mcg Florinef (Winter)
  • I determined that I needed more HC while training by listening to my body. When my workouts intensified and I felt consistently achy, exhausted and generally bad, I increased my HC to 25 mg. I would have increased to 22.5 but Westward HC is too difficult to split into eighths (thanks Westward! *insert sarcasm here*)
Training: 25 mg HC, 12.5 mg DHEA, .05 mcg Florinef
  • I only increased my HC if I had the symptoms above OR if I was exercising for longer than a couple of hours. I increased by about 5 mg for 2 extra hours of exercise. Often, I'd schedule my workouts with my meds so that I didn't need extra and I would split my doses further to cover my exercise. For example, I take 10 mg of HC at 11 am generally but during a longish workout I might take 5 mg of HC at 10 am, 5 mg of HC at 11:30 am and 5 mg at 1 pm and see how tired I was later in the day and THEN take more HC.
2 days prior to race: 30 mg HC, 18 mg DHEA, .1 Florinef, extra salt
Race day:
10 mg HC, .1 mcg Florinef and 12.5 mg DHEA at 4:30 am
5 mg at 6:45 am (right before the race start)
2.5 at 9 am
2.5 at 10 am
10 mg at 11 am
2.5 at 12 am
2.5 at 1 pm
5 mg at 2 pm
5 mg at 3 pm
That adds up to 50 mg but I might have taken more at some point!!
Most importantly for me, I used the PowerBar Gel with 200 mg sodium. I ate one of them nearly every hour. FYI I'm not sponsored by PowerBar . This is what works for me so I am sharing the information. PowerBar Gel has a much higher sodium to potassium ratio than any other product I've found. Generally, the potassium content is higher than I am comfortable with in other products. People with Addison's disease need to be careful not to over supplement Potassium.
2 days post race: 30 mg HC, 12.5 mg DHEA, .05 Florinef

Monday, August 13, 2007

Colleen's Q & Dusty's A

What was the hardest part of your race?
The hardest part of the race was getting off the bike after 112 miles and not being able to walk, let alone run. The first 8.7 mile lap was a lot of walking. The running got easier as the Ibuprofen kicked in.

What tasted the best along the course?
Vanilla Powerbar Gels with 4X the salt. I carried my own. Salt and sugar in the same sticky mess. Yummy!

Was the swim physical?
The swim was physical when I saw some lily pads and realized there were probably leaches near me. I had to keep myself slowed down and repeat, "Leaches will not go in your ears, leaches will not go in your ears..."

The other time it was physical was when a group of us caught up with a slow guy who couldn't swim well. He was pummeling the water with his arms, kicking hard and pin balling off every person in the group. It hurt when he bounced off me!

Any technical issues on the bike?
The only technical issue I had was that my ENTIRE BIKE cost the less than ONE WHEEL of some people's bikes. I even passed people with bikes that cost as much as cars!

I stuffed my bike gloves in with my wet suit and passed it to Paul. Oooops! Too late to get them back since spectators are not allowed to assist the people in the race. It's ok, it was very liberating to not wear gloves for once!

How were the Aid Stations?
NOT ENOUGH BATHROOMS. Other than that, the volunteers were SPECTACULAR and helpful! Lots of water and Gatorade, sometimes ice.

How was your energy throughout each leg?
My energy was good through the swim and bike. Weak for the first lap of the run. I think my transitions were where my energy was the worst. I had too much stuff with me and I was a spaz.

What was the toughest challenge to break through?
The toughest challenge was to keep myself from crying. When I finished the bike, I was thinking, "Holy crap, I don't have to ride a road bike again for a long, long time! Holy crap, I just rode my bike a 112 miles! HOLY CRAP! I HAVE TO RUN A MARATHON!" When I was coming into the last .2 miles of the run I started crying because I was so happy and relieved. I almost cried throughout the run because I couldn't believe I was doing what I was doing.

When you cry and you're breathing hard, it's really hard to breathe. Not good.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

This week's running and pictures

Allison and I got a beautiful day to run on Thursday so we decided to go on the race course. Allison is doing the marathon on September 2, 2007 and I'm doing the 50 miler the day before, September 1, 2007. The picture under "Back to the Dirt" is from that day.

Yesterday, Paul, Allison and I went up to the ski hill where the race is going to be held and we walked briskly up to the top of Fred's mountain. It's nearly 2,000 vertical feet of elevation gain in 2.8 miles - STEEP!!! We came down a different way and it was fun. The Blue Grass Festival was going on and the base area was jammed with people.
Silly us at the top of Fred's Mountain

Today the three of us went for a 2 hour trail run up Pole Canyon. We saw a buck moose with a big rack. He ran away before I could get my camera out of the backpack. On our way home, we saw a bald eagle. This picture looks like the last one I posted but I swear it's a different eagle. Allison's so tough, she ran home (11 miles) after our 2 hour trail run!

Upcoming races

I am recovering well from the triathlon and have decided to do the following races this Fall:
Why a 50 you might ask? I'm in shape and I feel good, it's close (about 20 miles from here). I've never run an Ultra before. It's on my home turf and the views are spectacular! Doing the 50 is yet another way to test my limits and see what my body is capable of. Besides, I can eat a lot if I run 50 miles, right?