Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Blog 152: It wasn't just in my head!

Hi again you guys!

So, one thing I hadn't mentioned, whether because I thought it was boring (it probably is) or I was subconsciously worried it was something really serious (it's not at this point) , was that I had been feeling MAJORLY worn down and fatigued lately. I mean not just the "I'm a grown up so I'm always tired" feeling or the every day "2pm crash" feeling but actual significant weariness and fatigue that lead to me honestly thinking some days that there was no way I would make it without a nap. And some days I really did even take a nap in my car (or under my desk) instead of an actual lunch break. This would happen no matter how much or little sleep I got at night and regardless of whether I had been consistently eating well (which was most of the time) or being bad and eating crappy non nutritious foods from like mid October (maybe earlier) through the present. This was more exhausted than I felt when I was in grad school working 16-18 hour days 6 days a week between classes and internship and work, and I was doing LESS. And I really could barely work up the motivation to do any more than I absolutely had to because I knew that I would just be exhausted. Which made me feel lazy and worthless which aren't good for the whole self esteem situation.

I reached out to my FB friends about the daily fatigue which lead to all kinds of recommendations from eating more protein to taking a vitamin supplement. Because my diet was already consistently full of leafy greens and natural peanut butter and whole grains lean proteins and consistent small meals, etc... I wasn't convinced that was the problem. I also had been getting my 10k+ steps in every day and doing additional workouts a few times a week despite being utterly worn down because I was convinced that regular activity would give me more energy (like it's supposed to!)

Finally, at my annual appointment in January, I asked my Doctor for blood work because I was just so tired and at the end of my rope about it. She agreed, but tended to think it was more  of a "winter blues" thing. At first, I started to think that maybe she was right, maybe it is just seasonal tiredness and I just didn't remember it each year (though this time really did seem more noticeable and severe.) After a little anemia and low calcium came up in the first test I went back for further tests. And, it turns out I'm iron deficient AND super vitamin D deficient .. both of which lead to tiring easy and all that other fun stuff. SWEET VICTORY WAS MINE!!! I've never been more relieved to get not so stellar blood test results back in my life because these are pretty tame problems to have (as long as you don't let them fester for long) and sooooo easy and relatively inexpensive to treat. So, now I'm one of those people taking iron and vitamin C supplements with breafkast and dinner and mega doses of vitamin D once a week for the next 2 months (the deficiency was more than anything non prescription would be able to touch to get back to healthy) then we'll check it again.

You guys, I seriously can not wait to not feel devastatingly tired every afternoon. I feel better just knowing that there was something actually wrong and that I wasn't crazy or lazy (or hazy... sorry I love rhyming) or doing something wrong. I had an actual, physical/biological/tangible reason why I was so tired and it is totally fixable (but needed help from a doctor).

If you read all this, thanks and congratulations and get your vitamin D levels checked. Our indoor modern lifestyle makes this a really common problem! I know because as soon as I got my answer you better believe I was all over Google and Web MD to make sure that these weren't signs of a much more sinister problem. (Real Doctors probably hate Web MD "doctors" like me.)

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