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PCOS/Insulin Resistance Support Support for us with any of the following: Insulin Resistance, Syndrome X, Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, or other endocrine disorders.

WHAT just happened!?!

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Old 03-20-2013, 11:53 PM   #1
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Exclamation WHAT just happened!?!

Hi everyone. This is my first post on this board. I'm a female bodybuilder who got real lean 3-4 years ago and has PACKED ON pounds since then. I'm comfortable in the off-season around 185 lbs. My competition lean weight is about 165 shredded. With excessive dieting and working out 6 days per week, my weight has STILL crept UP nearly 50 lbs!!

I have done every sane and insane thing I can think of to manipulate my diet & workout routines to try to drop weight and compete for 3 years now. NOTHING worked for 3+ years. I knew I was not doing anything wrong with my workouts or nutrition, so finally I gave in and asked for help. Went to a doc and SUPRISE!! I'm insulin resistant. My insulin is through the roof somehow?!?

Blood glucose normal. A1C test normal. Insulin serum = 83. The lab report says its supposed to be under 17. WTH just happened!?!? How could this happen?? I've been working out and dieting strictly for 10+ years as a bodybuilder. All other lab test items came back great. I have NO symptoms of insulin resistance other than I can't lose weight no matter what I do. No fatigue, amazing energy, huge muscle gains in the gym, no excessive hunger/thirst, etc. The only symptom I have is that I can't lose weight!? I'm so angry right now. I thought dieting and exercising were the first line of defense against high insulin levels and were supposed to regulate it without medication!? I've been doing that 10+ years and my insulin is at 83! HOW. HOW. I cried when my doctor told me.

I've been lurking all over message boards this week and have seen people with 32, 35, 30 as "high" numbers. I presented with an 83 and still can't get into an endocrinologist til May. I guess on the plus side, at least I know why I've been gaining weight so easily even with all my working out and dieting, but I just wanna cry and keep asking why this happened.... I guess I'm going to use this log as a journal and document what happens/ask questions as I take care of this issue soooo hi everyone! And thanks for letting me rant on this first post!
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Old 03-21-2013, 12:14 AM   #2
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Wow. This is out of my area of expertise, but want to welcome you and let you know that there are some knowledgable folks on here who might have some insight. Good luck and hoping you get the answers you need.
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Old 03-21-2013, 12:20 AM   #3
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Have you tried controlling your insulin production by cutting your carbohydrates?

ETA: I am not a bodybuilder, but I do lift (heavy) weights for functional strength, and I am able to do so eating very low carb.
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Old 03-21-2013, 01:19 AM   #4
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I don't have any experience with weightlifting...but I do have PCOS and IR. Sorry to say t. hat I had it in Jr high/HS/college when I was quite thin and active, also. Some people assume that you get it from being inactive or obese....not so much...and not always. It is also a genetic thing. For a long time I was able to minimize the effects by being active. But, if you gain (like I did when pregnant) those pounds are SO stubborn for PCOS/IR peeps. Stubborn? Yes. Impossible to lose? NO. It has taken me a year to lose a little over 40 lbs. But, I am also hypothyroid which is also fairly common among the PCOS cysters. Forty pounds down is way better than gaining. Low carb combined with IF is what has worked for me. Good luck.
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Old 03-21-2013, 02:19 AM   #5
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Hi ladies. Thank you all for the welcome & quick replies! Indeed I have done low-carb, no-carb, ketogenic diets, carb cycling, targeted-keto diets, 1-2 day carb ups... I have manipulated everything I can think of with regard to diet. I lift weights 4x per week and I've done no cardio, daily cardio, fight MMA 6x per week, high-intensity-interval training, 2+ hours cardio per day. I'm talking INSANE amounts of activity on low low calories. Tried it all!

Also during this 3 years, I've rested my body by taking several weeks off training and ramped up my calories slowly to reset my metabolism and make sure I wasn't adrenally exhausted. I maintain my weight at 3000 calories per day. Knowing this, I have decreased to 2500, 2200, 2000, 1800, 1500, 1200, 1000 calories per day with NO losses. Each time I've spent several weeks at each of these calorie levels with no fat loss whatsoever. VERY FRUSTRATING!!

So after 3 years of doing every possible bodybuilding & dieting trick out there with no fat loss, I went to a doc a week ago. Some people with IR or PCOS find it difficult to lose weight... I found it IMPOSSIBLE! I would have settled for slowwww fat loss this entire time if that was occurring--Eating the same 7 foods + greens day in and day out with tons of activity should produce leanness. Not a complete standstill In spite of all my frustration, I feel excellent physically (other than I'm carrying too much bodyfat) and I do believe this will get better Today I took my first dose of Metformin (which I specifically asked for and my doc prescribed until I can see an endo in May to find out why this is occurring). I'm just completely in shock my insulin is 83 when its supposed to be under 17. Almost 5x what its supposed to be!?!
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Old 03-21-2013, 08:48 AM   #6
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I was going to suggest that if you're that insulin resistant, you may want to request Metformin. Sounds like you already have.

It will take a few weeks to build up in your system. Please take a deep breath and be patient. Many people, even with very high insulin, find that Met will help them a great deal. It suppresses the liver's production of glucose... insulin resistant people tend to have livers that over-make glucose, which then signals your pancreas to pump out more insulin. Even on a low-carb diet, your liver will make SOME glucose (gluconeogenesis). It sounds like it's making more than you need, and your pancreas is reacting accordingly. The Met may calm your liver's glucose factory, which in turn should cut back on your pancreas making so much insulin.

That is, if you continue to eat fairly low-carb. You already seem to know that if you eat high carb, it also triggers insulin production because of glucose from the food you eat.

So stick with the lower-carb diet, and see how the Met helps after a month or so. By that time, you'll have your endo appt in May and I hope she'll have some good news for you!

Keep us posted. I know how frustrating it can be to try to lose weight with high IR. I'm glad you found us (even though I wish you hadn't HAD to!). Please do keep posting. We may not be able to help directly, but we can encourage you and help support you even through your frustrations.
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Old 03-21-2013, 09:59 PM   #7
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Lol, being patient is SO hard for me. I'm a perfectionist in every sense of the word and patience is something I certainly need to work on

Today is day #2 of taking Metformin... 500mg twice per day. No issues so far.... Am I supposed to have tummy/bathroom issues to know its beginning to work? Slight headache yesterday but that could be from my thirstiness from this dry air in my house/using Afrin nasal spray too much...
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:06 PM   #8
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I think it varies a lot from person to person. I never had tummy issues exactly...but I did have more frequent BMs. I think that happened within a few days for me if I remember correctly.
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:14 PM   #9
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I just wanted to chime in and say that our bodies are complex and that we really don't have any control over some of the things that happen to them. You didn't anything wrong--your body is unique and will behave differently than others. I'm sorry you're frustrated but at least now you know and you can start working towards a solution.
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Old 03-22-2013, 04:08 AM   #10
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I have absolutely zero authority to say anything here as-far-as advice, but I will say good luck and I hope things get better for you .
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Old 03-22-2013, 09:34 AM   #11
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Hang in there. I hope you get some answers from your endoc appt.

Some things to consider -- BCP. Some of them promote insulin resistance in PCOS people.

Wheat -- some people with sensitivities to wheat get wiggy numbers.

PCOS patients present in at least 5 ways -- sounds like you could be PCOS/IR type.

GL!
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Old 03-22-2013, 01:08 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaitie9399 View Post
I just wanted to chime in and say that our bodies are complex and that we really don't have any control over some of the things that happen to them. You didn't anything wrong--your body is unique and will behave differently than others. I'm sorry you're frustrated but at least now you know and you can start working towards a solution.
I guess that's part of my frustration here--not only the time I've invested in my bodybuilding career with 3 years and no results, but also I feel like "WHY? What did I do wrong to make this happen?" I've got to remember not to blame myself, but I do somehow feel "what else could I have done to avoid this?" So I am beating myself up a little bit. I did have the previous idea/stigma in my mind that if you are overweight/obese, you are insulin resistant and I've spent 10 years of my life being lean, healthy, constant working out, and very calorie-controlled diets for my sport and yet I still ended up with this. It boggles my mind!
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Old 03-22-2013, 01:24 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by astrophe View Post
Hang in there. I hope you get some answers from your endoc appt.

Some things to consider -- BCP Some of them promote insulin resistance in PCOS people.

Wheat -- some people with sensitivities to wheat get wiggy numbers.

PCOS patients present in at least 5 ways -- sounds like you could be PCOS/IR type.

GL!
A.
Could I be PCOS without having the main time of the month issues? My TOM is normally very regular ever since I was 12. I get the usual back pain, watery abs, and cramps to know its coming. I can usually predict it down to the day. I do have some mild chin hair growth that's annoying, but not a big deal and a red dermatitis rash that shows up before my TOM and leaves in 3-4 days, but this does not always happen every month... nor does it bother me enough to have it looked at since it goes away so quickly. The main thing that bothers me is the weight issue so at this point, so being diagnosed as IR and needing Metformin will hopefully begin to help.
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Old 03-22-2013, 02:19 PM   #14
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PCOS patients present in at least 5 ways. You do not have to be anovulatory. Ifyou are ovulatory it could be one of these presentations.

non-traditional PCOS -- ovulatory, increased androgens, mild insulin resistance

idiopathic hirsutism -- ovulatory, increased androgens, no insulin resistance


Another thought -- intense workouts affecting your cortisol (stress hormone) and that causing even more PCOS hormone wacky?

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Old 03-22-2013, 04:24 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by astrophe View Post

Another thought -- intense workouts affecting your cortisol (stress hormone) and that causing even more PCOS hormone wacky?

A
Good point. This is an issue for me. My body responds well to yoga and walking. I enjoy Zumba...but it can be too much and I can even gain if I try that strenuous more than once a week.
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