Heart/Head/Hormone

I start writing a post. I get a few sentences in and then I stop. I leave it. There is no coherence, there is no point. They’re not even rants, they’re just nothings – circles of thoughts spinning around in my head.

I’m bored now because I’m in bed and it’s 7pm. I stumbled up here as soon as was feasible on The Husband’s return. I had been sat on the sofa feeling dizzy, tired, and nauseous with pins and needles in both hands. I just needed to lie down, being upright was such a chore. So here I am.

I don’t know what’s going on with me but I do know that, at times, it can feel quite frightening. The fear triggers a desire to cry but there are no tears. Instead, I’m vacant… wondering ‘what am I doing? Oh yes, right…’ The big shocker with all of this is that it isn’t my mental health. Yes, that is correct, this is not a mental health thing.

Let’s see if I can summarise where I’m at:

  • Fatigue
  • Muscle weakness
  • Dizziness
  • Weight gain
  • Itching
  • I’ve been a frustrated runner for months now: why am I not improving?! I turned to heart rate data from my TomTom watch and it was pivotal: my runs feel harder because they are harder. They’re not longer or faster, no. Instead, they are harder to me, my heart is having to work so much harder. There you go. It’s not in my head. On runs that I’d call long I could be spending upwards of 40% of the Run in heart rate zone 5. If you’re wondering WTAF that means well it’s simple really: zone 5 should correlate to a sprint effort, to 90-100% of maximum heart rate i.e. not a long run! A long run should be more in zone 3, 70-80% of max heart rate.
  • No wonder I’m knackered.
  • Running is feeling harder because it bloody well is! My runs are getting slower and shorter and harder! Where is the sense in that?! That is the exact opposite of what training is supposed to achieve. Well, never one to just say that’s that then I’m f**ked I tried to problem solve and I came up with a plan! I would use heart rate training during my runs to make sure I didn’t over exert myself. I would run less and cycle more as cycling doesn’t cause me the same issues. Perfect!
  • Except I’m in bed now, dizzy and weak and dreading a day with the kids tomorrow. It’s not that I don’t want to spend time with them, I do. I want to have fun with them and I feel so guilty about this. It’s challenging my mental health too. You do not mean to tell me that I battled mental illness to end up still incapable of doing things? No. You absolutely could not possibly be telling me that. You wouldn’t.
  • I’ve been back and forth to the GPs. These things take time, for example, there are the blood tests that show everything to be healthy and normal. He took my blood pressure on standing and it dropped too low which was ironic really as I actually didn’t feel dizzy at that moment. I’ve largely seen the same GP for years so he knows me and this makes everything a hell of a lot more easy. He checked some little yellow reference book and asked some quite random questions. I actually quite liked the randomness! Like, errrr what? The conclusion: well nothing obvious. I laughed because that was fine, it was what I had expected and frankly I find the whole thing embarrassing.
  • “However,
  • (Pardon? What was this however about?)
  • *ahem*
  • however, I think you’d best have an ECG”. Ah, right you are doc. I’ll explain; I’m on Venlafaxine and it’s good practice to have an ECG every few years on it. I’m probably overdue. No worries. I’m not expecting anything.
  • Irony. I ran in the BHF 10K in February
  • “And I think I’ll refer you to Endocrinology”. Hmmmm, interesting, I wasn’t expecting that. He explained his logic about a hormone deficiency and potentially using steroids to correct it but needing to do the tests first.
  • It always completely blows me away when someone 1. believes me and 2. takes me seriously.
  • For what it’s worth, after some serious power googling, I don’t think he’s got it quite right. He’s suggesting Addisons but you lose weight with Addisons and I’ve gained it, oh dear lord how I have gained it. To paraphrase some Jane Austen, “dear reader, I ate him”. That’s my current eating plan – everything. (To be clear, I did not eat the GP, he was neither cooked nor wrapped in chocolate so he was safe.)
  • So here I am, training for the London Marathon 2020, in my chuffing bed. I can’t even really talk about what’s bothering me because what’s bothering me is the thought that it’s my heart. Not only that it’s my heart but that it won’t show up on the 15 minute ECG. Now, I could be completely and utterly wrong but allow me to worry like anyone else would – not too much, not too little, juuuuuust right. I absolutely can’t talk about my heart as it’s only been 3 months since my father-in-law passed away with an actual heart problem. My ponderings would be so inappropriate to share that I keep them to myself/make publicly available for the whole world on the Internet (it’s cool, they don’t read this). I sensed the complete panic in my husband’s text when I said “ECG”. It’s standard good practice for Venlafaxine users I told him, and so it is.
  • I’m scared that by talking about these concerns that I’m going to look ridiculous. Hahaha look at her over reacting! She doesn’t have a clue! That could be true you know? I, more than anyone, know how much power the bastarding brain has and if it wants to convince me that I’m ill then it will most likely have great success.
  • HOWEVER there is the heart rate data and there is the blood pressure plummeting. Data, I love you.
  • Let’s just be clear: I do not want to have something wrong with me. I want to be able to lift a washing basket (I’m a simple woman!) and to make gains in my running and not have to sit down when I walk up the stairs, ooooh and to have a shower whenever I wanted again. I do not want there to be anything wrong with me but I recognise that I have a problem and all I want is to solve it.
  • Simple really.
  • PS if you’re reading this and it’s got bullet points throughout it then I just want to say that it was not me! WordPress does stuff like that from time to time.
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