Thursday, September 1, 2016

Bi Annual blood work!

Sorry, a day late! Work and life have been kicking my butt the last week or so!

Well, as I've mentioned quite a bit in the past, after my ordeal with overtraining and my recovery I've become much more interested in keeping an eye on what's going on inside my body, and besides the obvious interest (because it's me!) a much more obtuse curiosity in how things like training, supplements, weather and diet (among others) have an effect on it.

Having a history of data to look back on and chart over time is information which is (or at least can be) invaluable when trying to set yourself up for optimal performance. Of course having the right set of eyes to help interpret the data is also worth it's weight in gold!

- So I'll go ahead and make my plug... I trust Dr. Sprouse at his new place, Podium Sports Medicine to help me lay that bag of snakes out straight.

You are not getting flipped off, promise!

Having a comprehensive blood panel has really opened my eyes to a lot of what goes on in training. I still have such a rudimentary understanding of all of it that it's laughable, but I've gleaned enough to start doing small "experiments" myself. When I first began getting my blood tested (in late '14 when I was really crashing) one of the things that was very tanked was my Vitamin D. I began supplementing it (with Thorne Research drops) fairly heavily and in on my next test it had risen a healthy amount. That was during winter, but as summer approached I began cutting back my amount of supplementing, mainly to see what would happen and whether or not I got enough D from the sun. In my latest labs it has again dropped, not to a scary level, but back under what I would have thought was optimal. I'll start adding a reduced bit back in during the warmer months and move back to a full dose during winter as it doesn't seem like I get quite enough compared to how much I'm exposed to the sun.

We also had my testosterone tested again in the round of labs. Personally I think this is a pretty unhelpful number to test regularly for anything more than curiosity as honestly... there is not much to be done if the numbers come back low. I will admit however, I was slightly relieved to see that I was well into the "normal" range after this test. Looks like I don't have to start lifting heavy things again! Yet...

Otherwise, besides a high'ish cholesterol (something I've had since I was a toddler) and a still elevated (but slowly dropping every time I have a test done) TSH, I got a pretty boring set of results. Of course, in this situation, boring is what you want.  (I was not very happy when the results were exciting! That meant things weren't looking good!!)  Considering my training load has increased fairly extensively in the past couple of months (I should peak around November! PERFECT...hahaha) the fact that nothing has tanked is encouraging that I'm back on the right track for the future.

Thanks so much for reading. If you are serious about training hours, I really do suggest at least having a very basic blood test done. I really would have benefited from it years ago, and now it is too late to go back. Especially if you've been feeling "run down" for a while now. It's very easy for us (endurance athletes) to really drain some of the important nutrients to keeping our body running optimally!

Big things in the future! Thanks again for reading!

- Christopher Morelock

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