Posted by: Miriam | 08/07/2010


This has been a hard winter on me physically. I have never lived anywhere with this much snow. In the Pacific NW we get rain, rain, gray, and surprise surprise, more rain. There is a reason everything is so damn green and mossy.

Here in the Southwest I was not expecting so much snow. Ok, ok. I know, Durango is in the mountains. Well sort of, located where the desert meets the mountains and the sky. But still, I didnt think we would have 3 bloody feet.

I didnt know what to do with myself. How am I supposed to ride my bike in that much snow? Oh yea, you dont. I spent a lot of time at the gym. Eons. Well ok, that is a lie, but we are talking like 2 hours a day 4 days a week. I hate the gym. But what else was I going to do?

Well that leads to the discovery of downhill skiing and my renewed love of nordic. I did these, not as much as I would have liked, but I did. And then went back to the gym.

You would think with all this working out, I would not gain much of the dreaded winter weight. However when I gained 20 lbs in just about a month, it was critical mass time (pun somewhat intended).  I blindly picked a doctor from the insurance company’s website and made an appointment.

Three months, 5 appointments, 1/2 gallon of blood, 20 lbs later we finally came to a diagnosis. Polycysitic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). What does that mean, its a bunch of random letters stuck together? So basically the ovaries dont release an egg properly, this jams up the whole endocrine system. What does that do you say? Well, it leads to increased levels of estrogen and androgens (and as a result, low progesterone). Insulin resistance (and if it goes untreated, pre diabetes and then potentially to Type 2). And lack of menstruation/ovulation (trust me I was NOT complaining about this). As well as other issues, but those are the main ones. So now what?

I started on metformin, an anti-diabetic drug that helps with the insulin issues and for reasons they arent quite sure of, the  PCOS. To fix the PCOS, one has to ovulate on a regular basis. Ovulation reduces the level of estrogen and androgens in the system and increases the level of progesterone. Which makes all the girly bits work correctly, and in turn keeps the hormone levels in check.

Month one: I lose 5 lbs, my carb cravings are in check (no more ravenous eating a 1/2 loaf bread at 1am) and I am feeling happier. Yea!

Month three: Down 9ish lbs, carb cravings are coming back and still no ovulation. Bummer dude. Time to increase the dose – normal pills 2x day to horse pills 2x day.

Next dr appt is in August. Heres hoping that  the last 5-10 lbs get worked off this summer. I know this will be the hardest. But it is SUMMER. I’m riding almost daily, running 2-3 days a week, and generally feeling a lot happier being outside.

So as winter is obviously come to a close, and summer is upon us, here is to being healthy and happy.



  1. PCOS doesn’t sound super awesome, it’s good you’ve got it diagnosed and are working with it. Good luck!

    Three feet of snow? Ish.

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