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.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Heather the Power Pedal Princess!

Heather Nagy modeling the PPP tiara helmet that will be worn for 30, 60 or 100 miles of cycling by the PPP team!

Let me tell you about Heather. She loves to have fun, she's very active, she's got Addison's disease, she's got a great sense of humor, she knows her birds and loves bird watching and identifying, she travels a lot, she's really educated in general and with health stuff in particular, she wears tiaras and lots of pink, and she's fundraising for the Tour de Cure! She's created a team called the Power Pedal Princesses. The Tour de Cure is a ride "On behalf of the millions of Americans with diabetes and their families and friends, we are counting on you to help our team make a difference! The funds we raise will support the American Diabetes Association’s important research, information and advocacy efforts and its mission: to prevent and cure diabetes and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes."

Heather and the PPP will be riding various distances in Orlando, Florida tomorrow. They have already raised OVER $5,000 for the American Diabetes Association!!! If you'd like to donate on Heather's behalf, click here.

Heather on a training ride. I'm kidding. Her fellow PPP in Florida were saying it was too cold to ride outside in Florida. Heather got all dressed up for this photo shoot to show them Ohio weather!

Heather's reasons for riding in the TDC:

"As you may know, my family has been deeply impacted by this insidious disease. My mother's life was tragically shortened by Type 1 Diabetes, and several other family members' daily lives are affected by this incurable disease. My cherished niece Laura Lee, who has lived with Type 1 Diabetes for 25 years now, rode the Tour de Cure last year, and I am delighted to join her on the ride this year. Her mother, Sharron, who has Type 2, will also ride. We've formed a team called the Pedal Power Princesses (a tip of the tiara to Laura, who always sparkles!) and we welcome all riders (even Princes!) to join us.
Each mile we ride, and the funds we raise will be used in the fight to prevent and cure diabetes and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes.
No matter how small or large, your generous gift will help improve the lives of more than 23.6 million Americans who suffer from diabetes, in the hope that future generations can live in a world without this disease. Together, we can all make a difference!

Thank you for making a generous contribution to this cause that is so important to me!"

Go Heather GO!!!! I'm so proud of you and your accomplishments!!!

Monday, February 22, 2010

And tomorrow I run...

This picture is a perfect example of the quote below. Although many, many people have put this many miles on their treadmill, I am excited enough about it to take a picture. I've been planning this for since December when it started getting close! My husband helped me get it to 1,000 miles but I've done plenty of 20 milers to do my part.

"Enthusiasm spells the difference

between mediocrity
and accomplishment."

- Norman Vincent Peale

I'm back up and moving. I have been for about two weeks. It's taken me nearly this long to figure out what I can do and what I want to do with myself. My hip barely hurts at all any more! About 10 days ago, I started a workout program that also includes stretching. At first some of the stretches were uncomfortable, immediately after stretching the pain and range of motion in my hip joint was incredibly better! On February 13th, I started my one mile and three pull-ups a day streak again! Yahoo!! I am hoping to be in shape, OK, that's not true, I'm not "hoping". I expect to be in shape enough to run Big Horn 100 in June through a carefully planned running schedule and lots of cross training. I will be qualifying for Hardrock 100's lottery this year. If I don't complete Big Horn, I can finish Grand Teton or the Bear. And tomorrow, I begin running! It will only be for a minute or two at a time but I will begin!

Enough about me. For the next while, I will be trying to do more Addison's related posts. If you've got Addison's and you're not part of my forum, you may want to check it out. There's lots of knowledge, experience and support for those with Addison's, hypothyroid or undiagnosed. CHECK IT OUT!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Steroid guilt

There's a subset of people with Addison's Disease who are VERY hesitant to increase our steroids despite our body giving us clear signals that we need more steroids. I like to call this "Steroid guilt". I most certainly a sufferer of this STUPIDITY.

I think the more athletic Addisonian's tend to suffer the worst from this. We are used to putting our body through good pain and getting good results. We have conditioned ourselves to overlook the symptoms below, often until it's too late and we're really sick.

Those of us who suffer with steroid guilt will refuse to see these adrenal insufficiency symptoms as signs of needing to increase:
  • low blood pressure
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • being cold to the bone and having a hard time warming up
  • heavy arms and legs
  • chills
  • diarrhea, especially bloody
  • inappropriate fatigue
  • extended injury
  • frequent colds
  • frequent trips to the ER
We will go on about our days complaining of a persistent stomach ache or being cold, giving no thought to increasing our steroids or blowing someone off who suggests it.

Why do we do this?

I think it's because it's been drilled into us that we
a) will get fat if we increase our steroids
b) will get osteoporosis
c) need to be on the lowest amount of steroids possible at all times
d) we've seen others pop HC like candy, who suffer from Cushingoid symptoms, take waaaaay too much HC way too often. We don't want to be like them.

We completely disrespect our body by ignoring the fact that if we had working adrenals and have any of the above symptoms, our body would make extra cortisol. We force our body to work harder and be under stress longer and not heal as well because we are stubborn and feel guilty. It's stupid. I have done this over and over. I am committing to treating my body much better and listening to it calling to me with the symptoms I listed above.

You know what can happen if we ignore our body's cry for steroids, we can end up with vomiting and have to go to the hospital to get IV fluids and IV steroids (and it costs a lot of money!), we can end up with the diagnosis of IBS because we're not giving our intestines what they need to work properly, we can end up with cold after cold that might turn into pneumonia

You that don't take enough meds, you know who you are!

Think twice about complaining about the persistent nausea! Try increasing your steroids for a day.

Don't keep wondering why your BP is so low for days on end, don't attribute it to something else, try increasing your steroids for a few days!

Hear me complaining about nausea, low bp, being tired, don't hesitate to tell me to increase my steroids.

You get the picture! If you DO increase your steroids, you can ALWAYS drop back down to normal levels immediately. If you increase your steroids and you show signs of over replacement, drop back down immediately. However, if you increase your steroids and your symptoms go away you know you've done the right thing and perhaps you're training yourself better for the future. You may be potentially avoiding a trip to the ER.

This is too long. I hope someone has read and heard and will listen.