Hormones: My Dr. is confused just like me. I'm on Depo Provera, I've been on it for years and yes, it causes weight gain. In October 2009 I started experiencing all the classic symptoms of early menopause, which does run in my family. Night sweats, hot flashes, mood swings, thinning head-hair and sprouting hair everywhere else (even a course gray whisker on my cheek that keeps coming back). This spring I finally had my hormones tested and my OBG-YN declared that I was experiencing pre-mature perimenopause. Menopause, technically is the state a woman is in AFTER she's been "menopausal" for several years. It's the end result when you stop having cycles, hot flashes, etc. and you're free to be a happy, sterile old lady. Perimenopause is the time before full menopause when women are miserable, cranky, and hormonal. It's caused by dropping estrogen levels and my Dr. said my estrogen was all but non-existent so she put me on supplements and assured me that "most people LOSE weight on estrogen". Now, on Nov. 1st of this year I went in for my regular depo (I'm not sterile yet) and my clinic had a new OBG-YN who looked at my chart and said "Why are you on depo AND estrogen?" So I explained it to her and she said "Well Depo is PURE progesterone and that's probably why your estrogen is so low. If you're having symptoms of menopause it could just be the depo, we need to get you on a non-hormonal form of birth control and off the hormones so you can lose weight" ... YAY she seems like a much smarter Doc!!! So Monday of last week I dropped the estrogen. I slept good, had more energy, got more done, and felt good until about Friday (it takes time to build up and leak out of the system, hence the delay). Friday was hot flash city. So I started taking them again. I have an appointment in January to get an IUD. Birth control without hormones. No progesterone, no Depo, no estrogen supplements (hopefully). Until then I guess I'll take the estrogen on an as-needed basis because school is starting to get really stressful and I need to be able to sleep so that I can concentrate.
So for those of you asking - that's the full blow-by-blow.
Giving up: You re ALL right. I took your advice Dr. Swan and something even more interesting popped out at me that I hadn't even realized. I've stopped eating breakfast. I don't know when it happened but aside from my Sunday morning breakfasts with Snackers I've completely stopped eating until my Healthy Choice lunch at 1 p.m. That's my bad. I've also grown accustomed to drinking a gallon or more of water a day which, during the summer, was good but now that it's winter and I'm not really sweating much, I think it's overkill. I upped my sodium as a result of my increased water intake. I need to lower them both - I mean it's 50 flippin' degrees outside and I've had these little blinders on because I'd become obsessed with routine.
I've also started to think that 50 jumping jacks 5 to 6 times a day is the best exercise ever. It's not. It's a super great boost but I need to get back to walking. I've notice MOST of my exercise now for months has been muscle-building exercise. No, I haven't gained 10 lbs of muscle. My brother tells me in the body building world professional lifters are lucky to gain 2 - 3 lbs of muscle a year. BUT I've all but given up on good old fashioned cardio. I started to get obsessed with wanting to run and then when I got shin splints from it I just pretty much gave up. My goal is to run after I'm under 200 lbs so I'm jumping the gun there. I was losing the most weight when I was walking 3 -5 miles a day. I need to get back to that - and I am sure Vladdy will appreciate it too.
The hardest part right now is school. It's gotten really hard. I just got the first C on an assignment that I've ever gotten in my life. I've never even gotten a B before in my life and I got a C last week. I know it sounds dumb but that is emotionally devastating to me. I need to get over it. Last night I stayed in my office after work for 3 hours working on an assignment and when I finally stopped working on it I was psychologically, mentally, emotionally, and (for some strange reason) even physically exhausted. I'm finally working classes that focus on my major instead of gen-eds and that added stress is eating at my drive to exercise in the evenings. Anonymous is right. Somehow I have got to find a way to get my butt up and get it moving again.
How I feel: Several of you addresses how I feel. Here comes the uplifting part. I feel awesome. I feel stronger, more confident, I have higher stamina, and I find myself wanting to dress nicer and take better care of myself than my usual pony tails and no makeup because I FEEL like I LOOK better. Well I do look better. At the start of that hike in Red Rock last weekend I was afraid of my own legs. I wouldn't hike that rock ridge with Snackers and Vladdy because I didn't trust my legs to carry me. Half way through I swallowed my fear and tried it out and I felt like I was 15 again! It was beautiful! I used to get winded trying to climb the stairs at my apartment one time. When we moved I was up and down those stairs like a jack rabbit on crack and I loved it!
The conclusions: You're all right. I can't give up. Failure is temporary. Quitting makes it permanent.
- Maybe the hormones are playing a part - if that's the case I need to power through and fight to keep my weight at least stationary until January.
- Maybe school is part of it - if that's he case I need to power through and do as much as I can until I graduate in April and will have a bit more free time (which I might use to get a second job to pay off student loans depending on how big my raise at work is and, if I do, I'll get something physical like busing tables or something).
- I probably need to go back to eating something small in the morning whether it be a Fiber One bar or a yogurt or something.
- I need to cut back on my water - the Mayo clinic recommends approx 96 oz and I've been drinking between 120 to 140 oz which can cause the cells in the body to swell. (Dangerous levels of swelling are extremely rare and it is called water intoxication, I'm not to that point but I could be retaining too much water due to an excessively high water intake and not being active enough to actually sweat).
- Actually, that's another interesting fact from looking back on the early posts of this blog. When I first started to increase my water I was sweating profusely all of the time, even just sitting at my desk. Whether that's the hormones or something else, I've stopped sweating recently except at night (yeah still get night sweats from time to time) and I'm not going to the bathroom more so where is all of this water going?
- The three-week plan was really helpful. It gave me goals to accomplish and a routine to follow. I am routine-centric. I tend to have a higher drive to follow routines than I do to just "wing it". Lately I've been winging it and getting nowhere, I need to get back on a routine.
So I am posting this post for now in response to your comments, I will post another post tonight with food/activity. Thank you all for your support.