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high blood pressure

A Great Half Year

Today was SUCH a better day than yesterday. Whew! I don’t have a huge amount of time, but here’s a summary:

  • It’s July 1 and many people were ruminating on their New Year’s resolutions and what has happened in this first half of 2009. Well, I have to say it has been totally awesome from my perspective. It has way surpassed my expectations. In fact, on January 1, 2009 I was so overweight and bummed and hopeless about it, I did not make any resolutions because I felt there was no chance of making good on anything. Then on January 17th I got my pre-diabetes diagnosis and everything changed. I began this blog. I started seeking out a healthy community. And, as they say, the rest is history. My body and self have changed more in these six months than any other period in my life, other than pregnancy. (or perhaps the first six months) It has been a great period of transformation. I’m really happy with the first half of this year, and anticipate an excellent 2nd half as well. (I’ll be turning 50!)
  • I had two MD appointments today: with my endocrinologist and my cardiologist. Both were totally impressed and pleased with my progress in every area. My weight loss and exercise have made for some dramatic and good changes in my blood pressure, blood glucose, lipids and other important health numbers. The two of them did convince me that it is time to go on statins, and this time I felt OK about it and I agreed. I’m cool with it. I will pick up my Zocor tomorrow.
  • I did two workouts today and I felt great with both: first, I did level 2 of Jillian Michael’s 30Day Shred. I guess I’m not going to Shred in 30 days since I hardly do it every day. But it felt really good. It IS a lot harder than level 1, but I kept it up and even followed the Hard Girl for about 80% of it. I was sweating rivers when I was done, and felt great. She had some moves in there that I had never done before, like “plank-jacks” (horizontal jumping jacks while in plank position) and oblique twists. I was psyched about it. Then this evening I did the Cemetery Workout (yes in a cemetery – photos here) and one of my old workout buddies whom I haven’t seen in FOREVER showed up, and that was big fun.
  • I received an email from someone I had not heard from in 10 years, and it made me very happy.
  • I was happy that my “tired” state from yesterday really lasted only like 24 hours. I am as bouncy as ever today.


So it happened again today. I went blithely into my cardiologist’s office, practically SKIPPING because I was so over-the-moon proud and happy about my weight loss, my lowered triglycerices, my NORMAL BMI, my fantastic A1C levels — and while he was duly impressed (or at least acted sort of impressed), he zeroed right in on my cholesterol levels.  They’re like borderline high. My “good” cholesterol, HDL, is not quite high enough, and it has not budged an iota in four months, despite exercise and weight loss, etc.

He said, “I want to put you on a statin.”

He was just going by his medical protocol, but for me it was great clanging alarm bells and red lights and “YOU FAILED!!!!!!!!!!!”

Once again, I left a medical appointment, sat in my car and cried.

I called my physician husband and he gave me all sorts of pats on the back (vebally) and validation and explained the lunkheaded ways of doctors, and I still cried.

I felt once again like I was five years old and was getting a finger wagged at me, you know that old “NOT GOOD ENOUGH” voice.

Bleh! Feh! UGH!

He (husband) also gently reminded me that perhaps I had had unrealistic expectations, ie that by “doing good” (and you all KNOW the good I’ve been doing!!) I would be able to outrun all my diagnoses, throw away all medications, etc. Instead, I got MORE medication. It just feels like failure to me. I know I have to turn my head around. I am not the kind of person who shuns medication at ALL, I just wasn’t ready for MORE. I was at peace with what I was already taking, but I felt like I was going in a good direction and I was going to be rewarded for that somehow.

I’m probably going to have to take insulin one day. I am probably more prepared for that eventuality than I was for the statin. Ugh.

Farewell, Diovan

This week I started feeling all dizzy and lightheaded during my workouts, especially those in which my head was lower than my body. I told my husband about it and he took my blood pressure and it was LOW. LOW!!!!! I have had high blood pressure for what seems like forever, starting with pre-eclampsia during pregnancy in 1989 and then never really resolving. I’ve been on BP medication for a long time.

He suggested that I stop my medication for a few days and see what happens. I was nervous about doing this, but I went ahead and did it and:

  1. I stopped feeling dizzy during exercise, and
  2. my blood pressure stayed NORMAL!

Normal normal normal!! Wooooooooo!! I am as excited about this as I am about losing weight.

Went to Weight Watchers this morning and in spite of a biggish dinner last night (another exuberant potluck) I was down 1.4 lbs from last week. So yay!

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