So I was diagnosed (finally) with hypothyroidism almost ten years ago. Needless to say it was a very frustrating journey. I spent many years and many visits to physicians trying to figure out what was wrong with me…to no avail. There didn’t seem to be anyone who could explain the symptoms I was experiencing. Exhaustion, hair loss, changes in appetite, vertigo….and did I mention exhaustion. I was tired all the time! There was a period of time that I was made to feel that it was all just in my head. But after some time came the diagnosis and I was, at the time, somewhat relieved. However, I soon came to discover that treatment was certainly not as easy as taking a pill once a day (this is what my doc told me). I took the pill once a day…faithfully. Those of you with the diagnosis know what I’m about to say…I didn’t feel any better! I was still tired and most days that and the vertigo made life almost completely debilitating. This experience has been a really important life lesson. After years in a career where I spend my days advocating for those who can’t advocate for themselves…I needed to learn to advocate for myself. This was all new to me. I pushed physicians to treat me specifically and my symptoms and not just the diagnosis. I also explored natural therapies and changed my diet (read the research on hypothyroid and the importance of a gluten free diet – this has done wonders for me recently). In an effort to moderate the weight gain that can come with having hypothyroid I discovered a love for running. I have been a “runner” most my life; however, historically my running career has been intermittent as I struggled with finding balance in a demanding life. Over the past couple years though it has become an essential part of how I cope with the symptomology of the diagnosis. I have come to terms with the fact that the diagnosis means that my body will always be in a constant state of flux and that I will continue to struggle to understand this….but running has helped me to moderate many of the symptoms. As odd as it sounds…on days when I feel like I would rather die then drag my ass out of bed…nothing feels better then when I get back from my time on the road! I’m a hypothyroid runner…it’s either an oxymoron or I’m just a moron!