Wednesday, August 3, 2011

What happened to July?

Barcelona to Frankfurt flight complete and we’re on our way back to Canada. I'm not sure how I feel about people clapping after a clunky plane landing. I’m sure it’s just a way to say thank you to the pilot.. but it makes me feel like everyone was expecting to crash, and are thanking the pilot for saving their lives. If it is the world’s worst flight and the engines fail and a wing falls off but the pilot miraculously lands then sure I’ll clap too, but otherwise applauding a particularly jarring landing makes me scared of flying.
Matt, Alex and I spent yesterday evening getting a mini tour of Barcelona from Jon Bird! We ended up there last minute when our team realized that it was logistically impossible to get us all down from France the morning of our departure. So John Sasso, and Marilyn were so kind as to drop us, and their 8 extra pieces of luggage, off in Barcelona last night. It didn’t really dawn on any one of us until we arrived- that this could be fun! Still in the middle of race season here, so it wasn’t exactly a night on the town, but we had a little swim in the Mediterranean, got to walk along the La Rambla, and sat out in a plaza for a Sangria. Turns out the little fruits on the bottom are potent. Like little shocks straight to your brain. We were just so happy to be out in the evening and for it to still be warm out. Crazy to think that only a couple hours before we were in the Pyrenees. It’s rare that we get much tourist time on trips, so to get some free time was sooooo awesome!

Euro-trip round two 2011 was a bit of a mixed up camp for me. I left Victoria feeling pretty frustrated and stressed about all the fruitless medical tests, so I was looking forward to getting away from it all and just training again. Predictably, getting back to training ended up being more challenging than I had hoped. In short, I began the camp having low blood pressure issues all over the place, becoming too dizzy and crappy feeling to get through workouts. After the first time, the dizziness didn’t go away for two days, so I learnt to shut it down earlier after that. As my bp issues began to get better, my fatigue levels increased until I wasn't even a functional human being anymore. On the plus side, I have never been able to sleep or nap so well in my entire life! The downside was that sleeping didn’t seem to help. I had to withdraw from the Banyoles race. Finally I got to the point where I barely made the walk a block over to the grocery-store (granted it was a tired day for all of us), had an epic meltdown, and tried go home so I could rest and heal and see more people. I wasn’t able to go home though, so (with dr.Austin’s medical advice ha) Alex and I came up with a backup-plan, and I tried my best to follow a pseudo- Gaps diet to see if it would help. The Gaps diet is used to heal medical issues stemming from GI problems (everything from crohn's to autism). I couldn’t exactly just eat beef/chicken broths like you’re supposed to at the beginning, so I skipped that stage, but I cut out all remaining potentially harmful things from my diet/life, and made lots of soup even though I don’t like soup, and the difference was unreal. Within the span of 2 days, I went from feeling the worst I have ever felt, to better than I have felt in a long time. I went from sleeping all day, to feeling too hyper to sleep. The energy change was so huge that at first I felt wired alll the time. My resting hr went down by over 15 beats, and I went from being unable to imagine going for a jog to having one of those runs were you could just run forever. Annnddd finally the rainy/cloudy/cold weather we had been having let up and summer came back. I had enough energy to think again. And the ability to talk came back.. So in the end, camp was good. Thanks Alex and Matt for always making everyone happy, and John and Kim for looking out for me. Jenny & Mike, as always, were the best hosts ever. Seeing an improvement has been a huge boost mentally. I had been concerned that this was going to be the end of my season, so I’m really happy to give it another couple shots this summer.

The non-Barcelona crew are all off to London now, so wishing everyone the best! We miss you, and wish we could be there, but at the same time are ever so happy to be heading home.


Laurence said...

Hey, I'm curious. I just read up on the GAPS diet, but i'm wondering what your pseudo GAPS diet was. what did you cut out and what kind of soups were you cooking up to create a change in two days?

Kyla Coates said...

Hi Laurence, sorry for the delayed reply- I only just saw this. Unfortunately I wasn't very smart and made a number of changes all at once, so I can't be entirely sure as to what made the biggest difference. I had already cut out all grains, and coffee quite a while ago, but I finally went so far as to cut out all dairy as well, and that seemed to help my digestive system (I had been eating a fair amount of yogurt). We made a bunch of bone broth soups (out of soup bones from the store, as well as whole chickens) that we cooked in the slow cooker and added in veggies and some yams, so I ate that for most meals as it is not only easy to digest but important for rebuilding the stomach lining. I also stopped taking an estrogen pill, so to be honest that was probably what made the biggest difference for my energy levels. I did this after doing a fair amount of reading on whole health source/ the healthy skeptic/the perfect health diet, so if you're interested I'd suggest checking out those websites!
I don't know if these changes will be enough to get me through the next races but I really hope so!