Confessions of a Pre-menopausal Hypothyroid Crossfitter

Scott started this blog as a way for us, mainly me, to jot down whatever comes to mind, to keep our family across the country apprised of what was going on in our lives.  As the title above says, I have a little confession to make.  In addition to this blog, I have my own journal that I keep on my iPad, one that no one reads but myself.  It’s where I can jot down whatever thoughts are going through my head at the time.  I don’t share it with anyone because, frankly, you’d think I was cuckoo if you knew what was going on in my head at any given moment.  You must be this tall to ride this ride.

During the week, I’m up before 6 am so that I can get boys off to football, get myself ready and wake up the rest of the house (except Anna, who manages to get up before me). I have lots of quiet time….which means lots of time for my brain to fire up.  At any given moment, I’m having several different conversations in my head. A touch of ADHD?  Probably.  Are they crazy voices, the kind that require a jacket that ties in the back. Nope. Just random thoughts that fill my head.  Thus the journal – I can jot them down and that frees up valuable space in my brain. Let’s face it, as we get older, we need all the capacity we can get.

So why am I telling you this?  Well, I thought, just for one day, I’d let you in on the musings going on in my head.  If you’re still here after that, you’re either family, or your just as cuckoo as I am! Hang in there, because the rambling starts now. This is how the thoughts in my head went this morning:

I am a 48 year old pre-menopausal hypothyroid crossfitter.  No, that is not a type of transgender person.  I am all woman. My choice of exercise is Crossfit….and biking with my husband. I started Crossfit a month ago….and have stuck with it despite the brutal workouts….so I think I’ve earned the right to call myself a Crossfitter (maybe a newbie will suffice).

Crossfit, for those of you that aren’t familiar, is defined by Wikipedia as “a strength and conditioning program consisting mainly of a mix of aerobic exercise, calisthenics (body weight exercises), and Olympic weightlifting.  If you look it up in the Urban dictionary, you’ll have laughs for days. One defines it as “A bunch of rich white people paying $250/mo. to have an un-credentialed coach instruct them to have spasms with PVC pipe and seizures on pull-up bars until they vomit. They generally do this for a period of 10-30 minutes and call it a workout.”

Ok, first of all, I do not pay $250 a month for anything that doesn’t involve upkeep on my house…not to my hairdresser, not to my chiropractor, and certainly not to Crossfit.  Do I work with PVC pipes? Yep, to learn proper form.  Do I sometimes feel like I want to vomit?  Sure.  These workouts are hard as hell. Weightlifting, plyometrics, running, rowing, pull-ups, push-ups….you name it, each day is a different form of torture.  And I love it. Each day challenges me, which is why I keep going back. Am I gonna sign up for any competitions?  Heck no….I’m in competition with myself. I’m one of the oldest people there – I work out with mainly 20-something college kids.  They can lift more, run faster, and jump higher than I can probably ever hope for again.  But I keep pushing on, because I’m not trying to compete with them, I’m doing this solely to better myself.

I have found that in just the past 4 weeks, I am getting stronger and I am able to do more each time I walk into our box (that’s the word for a Crossfit gym). My oldest made me flex my biceps and said, yep, they are coming back. I have a long way to go and a lot to learn still. That’s all great but now I have a new problem.  Every day for warm-up, we start with a 200m run, just to get the body warmed up before we start stretching.  Well, for the FIRST time in all my running years, when I ran my warmup on Sunday, I felt my butt bouncing.  And not in a good, Beyonce booty bumping, way. No, I could feel saddlebag fat going kaboing kaboing kaboing with every step I took.  What. The. Hell??  I haven’t had the perkiest butt, but it’s been a nice regular shape, not too wide, not too flat.  All of a sudden I’m busting my ass (literally) working out SIX days a week, and for that I develop saddle bags??? Now when I walk around during the day, I am consciously aware of this badonkadonk following me around.  In no way do I want a butt with a life of its own, one you can sit a glass on when you’re standing still….I do not want to look like Kim Kardashian…sorry lady, but you are just down right nasty.

So this morning as I was going through my morning routine of turning on the shower, taking my thyroid medicine and pushing the cat off the counter, I started to think (who would have guessed that). And since we live in this wonderful modern world, I started to Google the questions that came up in my thoughts.  Seriously…I Googled “Why am I developing saddlebags after Crossfit.”  And guess what?  Google answered. I’m not going to bore you with the details that I sat and read for 20 minutes while the shower got cold….on a website called Some FAT Truths…but basically, it said that saddlebags are subcutaneous fat….which is the most stubborn type of fat…and women are more predisposed to such fat.  Well that’s just great.

It goes on to say that stubborn fat is impacted directly or indirectly by many different types of hormones….and that dieting doesn’t help.  It said that eating less and exercising more makes your fat parts fatter.  Now, that’s just fabulous…if you want to grow fat. So where am I going wrong?  Eating too little?….not sure when it comes right down to it that I can really be accused of that. I put part of the blame on the upheaval of hormones that comes with pre-menopause, coupled with a whacked out thyroid (Hashimoto’s to be exact). What is a girl to do?  The article suggested 2 avenues…either eat less and exercise less, or eat more and exercise more.  So I can sit on my butt and eat lettuce, or I can go to Crossfit and eat steak?? Somehow I doubt that is the answer.

See this is where you figure out I’m cuckoo….here we are at the end of this blog, and I don’t have the answer. That’s just how my mind works!  But now that I have gotten all of this empty information out of my head, I’ve made space to find the answer. I am on a quest to figure this one out.  Not because I want to diet….let’s face it, diets don’t work and they don’t make you any richer or happier in the end.  No, what I want is for my body to feel better, and be fueled better so I can continue to get stronger.  I’m sick of chasing a number on a scale, thinking it defines whether I’m a good or bad person, whether I’m happy or sad. This is about making my body better….and getting rid of those damn saddlebags so I don’t go kaboing when I run. Stay tuned, because this journey is just beginning.