HGH & FMS Experiment

Where Human Growth Hormone Meets Fibromyalgia

8/22/2004

Posted by Thumper on February 3, 2007

I had bloodwork done this last week in anticipation of an appointment with my endocrinologist on the 26th. Having access to the hospital computers, the Spouse Thingy got all my lab values (except for Growth Hormone levels, which had to be sent to an outside lab) yesterday … everything came back in the normal range.

Thing is, my Free T4 just *barely* came back normal. On the scale they use .78 is the absolute bottom of normal and mine came back as .80–technically normal, but still. I’m still symptomatic–cold most of the time, nails break easy, and I can’t seem to lose weight no matter what. My doc, as good as he is, seems to be a medical minimalist. It’s like “we got you into the normal range, let’s not muck around anymore.”

I’d rather be in the therapeutic range, thankeweverymuch, but I’m not the one writing the scrips.

My endurance is still increasing, I think, and I’m able to push a little harder during workouts (and when you compare to when I first started all this over a year ago, it’s serious pushing…maybe not if compared to other healthy people, but against myself. Why, I impress myself 😉 ) During the Boot Camp aerobics class, where I was power walking during those portions of class where everyone else is running, I can now jog–well, somewhat. I’m wearing a heart rate monitor now, and if I go above my max, I have to back off, or else the instructor thinks I’m going to just keel over and die right on the spot.

I suppose that would put a dent in her day, to have some 40-something woman just pop off and die 20 minutes into class…

She’s a really good instructor, too. She pushes hard but realizes individual limits and works with those. These classes are honestly tougher than the TKD classes I took back when I was in really good shape. I think they’re a good part of my improvement lately.

I’ll be curious to see what the HGH levels are when they come in. I’m still on a very, very low dose, but it’s obviously working. I do wonder, though, if you’re taxing your muscles for growth if your body sucks it all up quicker, and if my levels will come back a tad lower. Just conjecture on my part, no real basis in any reality I know of.

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8/08/2004

Posted by Thumper on February 3, 2007

Ok, well, I may not be getting any smaller, but I’m definitely getting stronger. In cleaning out the garage this weekend, trying to clear a bunch of crap off a sofa we had stuck in the back, I realized that I’ve made tons of progress from this time last year.

When we moved the sofa into the garage, my end sort of dragged along the ground as I pushed and the Spouse Thingy puuled. This year, as we liberated it for donation to the Airman’s Attic, I not only fully lifted it, but carried it without any trouble.

All bragging aside, it is a heavy sofa.

Props to the combo of HGH and weight training, I suppose…

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7/27/2004

Posted by Thumper on February 3, 2007

Well crap.
The 2 pounds I magically dropped reappeared and brought 2 more with it.

I don’t know what else I can do; I’m working out at a really good clip several days a week, my diet is pretty decent–I try to keep it under 1500 calories a day–but this is getting beyond frustrating.

If I’m going to gain weight, I’d rather enjoy it with a box of Ding Dongs…

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7/22/2004

Posted by Thumper on February 3, 2007

Ok. I’ve had 3 doses of synthroid and have magically dropped 2 pounds.
Coincidence?
Perhaps…

I started the growth hormone injections about a year and 3 months ago. Longer than the doc thought I would stick with it, I think. He made a point of telling me that most of his adult patients who try it get tired of the daily injections after 6 months and stop. I think maybe they didn’t have the physical motivation.

This has been tumbling through my mind lately. When I started this, I think I was walking in the pool for about 25-30 minutes a day, 3 days a week. Once in a great while I’d work up to a good run, but not as often as I’d like. It doesn’t seem like it took very long for me to run in the water–at a good clip–for longer than 30 minutes, and the swimming just followed naturally. I went to 45 minutes in the pool, combining running and swimming, to just swimming (nonstop) for a full hour, several days a week.

These days I’m working out 5 days a week, doing Boot Camp aerobics (that’s YMCA-speak for “We’re Going To Torture You) and a Hi-Lo Impact Class that combines weight training with cardio work; it’s a 90 minute class and I follow it with half an hour in the pool. I may be adding a 6th day to my routine next week, when the Y re-adds a cardio kickboxing class to the schedule (taught by the same woman who does the Boot Camp class; she’s good, but her class is a workout; I’d been going to her kickboxing class for a couple of weeks before it got canceled…) It’s tiring and I have post-exertional aches and pains, but it’s evident that’s what they are–just the after effects of a good, hard workout.

This might not be important in the grand scheme of things, at least not to anyone but myself. But I do still have FMS–I get reminders of that every now and then–but my pain levels remain consistenly low, and my physical abilities have inched forward every week. While I’m certainly not in the shape I was in 10-12 years ago, I’m doing a hell of a lot better (and face it, I was in my 30s then and am in my 40s now.)

The gains have certainly motivated me to not stop taking it. After all, it’s a tiny needle and the little pinch one feels from it is a lot better than the pains of not using it at all…

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7/19/2004

Posted by Thumper on February 3, 2007

Ok…my doc has finally written me a scrip for synthroid, so hopefully I can make some progress on the weight front.

It seems like I have everything in order now: replacement of all the hormones the tumor wiped out, I’m working out at a really good pace several days a week, and my diet is (for the most part) good.

We shall see…

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7/11/2004

Posted by Thumper on February 3, 2007

Something that probably rates a 6 or 7 on the dork-o-meter:

I can still kick–sidekick, round kick, front kick, crescent–with at least a modicum on control. My body dynamics are crap, but those can be worked on. And even though I’m all about sloppiness during cardio kickboxing, when I’m not being tortured by some Young Skinny Thing and can concentrate on what I’m doing, I can put some power behind those kicks.

That’s significant, if only because it means I’ve come a long way in the last year, and if I keep up with the aerobics, cardio kickboxing, and swimming, when we move back to CA (in about 3 and a half months) I may be in good enough shape to give the martial arts a try again.

Y’all have no idea how much I want that.
Ok, maybe you do…
I want it a lot.

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7/07/2004

Posted by Thumper on February 3, 2007

Ooof.
I am seriously feeling all those squats today.

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7/06/2004

Posted by Thumper on February 3, 2007

Note To Self: if you hit a vein when poking yourself with a needle, it’s going to leave a bruise. And it won’t be pretty.

My legs are feeling today’s Boot Camp aerobics class. Or I could be feeling the combined effects of it plus last night’s kickboxing class. It’s not pain, per se, it’s more like “you used us, and we’re going to let you know it.” Between the two classes I did a lot of squats.

While I know my endurance is going up, there are still some things I can’t do and it bugs me. It shouldn’t, because they’re things I’ve never really done well, even at my most fit, but still… I don’t run well and have always been on the slow side. I don’t jump well at all—I remember years ago not really being able to do jump kicks in TKD, no matter how much I tried or how well I trained. So, during the classes, when we sprint or run laps, I just walk fast (well, as fast as I can), and when we do anything that gets both feet off the ground, my toes are still touching the floor.

My ego wants me to be able to do everything everyone else can do. Reality wants me to just do what I can, and keep moving through the things I can’t.

I take these classes with friends from the neighborhood, and today a couple of the husbands joined us—after that, I don’t think we’ll ever have to worry about them dismissing it as a froo-froo womens’ chat fest. And damn, they put some serious effort into it! I was impressed. Plus, they didn’t line up behind us and laugh at any jiggly body fat 🙂

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7/04/2004

Posted by Thumper on February 3, 2007

Definite signs that, after a year, the HGH may be doing it’s thing…

I’ve sputtered and restarted exercise programs over the last year, but in the last few weeks have caught fire, so to speak. It started with adding walking 3 days a week with some friends (and surprisingly, at a lose-your-breath pace, when I figured it would be a nice stroll with their kids.) A couple of weeks later I added a Boot Camp Aerobics class to the mix, and a week or so after that Cardio Kickboxing.

So, basically, right now I’m doing the Boot Camp Aerobics 2 days a week, Kickboxing 2 days a week, walking on the 5th day, with some swimming thrown in there when I have the time and energy (and more often I actually do have the energy.) My goal now is to build up enough endurance that I can ride my bike to the Y (the spiffy recumbent I got last year) for the Boot Camp classes, and then survive the ride home.

The Boot Camp class is interval training: a combination of cardio and strength training, and the cardio kickboxing class is pretty self explanatory, I think. Kind of like Tae Bo.

Now, I have not lost weight–that could be the Magical Sputtering Thyroid at work, but I’m definitely getting stronger and my endurance is increasing. When doing some wall-sitting the other day I grabbed my thigh and realized that under the body fat there is muscle there. I figure if I put the muscle on, the body fat will take care of itself (but, yeah, I need to get with my doc to address the thyrpoid issues.)

In terms of pain…I had 3 days with back pain that resulted from, of all things, a sneeze. But instead of being out of commission for 3 weeks, it was only 3 days. Otherwise, my pain levels are very low and tolerable; low enough that if I have something else to distract me, I don’t even think about it.

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5/11/2004

Posted by Thumper on February 3, 2007

At least a little explanation on the renewed pain and fatigue front: I am definitely hypothyroid now. I have the lab results, but I don’t have a followup appointment with the doc to discuss what comes next (synthroid or the equivalent I would assume). I have high hopes that treating that will get me back to the energetic, much-reduced-pain that I was enjoying this time last year.

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