I was diagnosed with adrenal fatigue in October of 2017 though I’m positive that they were an issue for me for much longer. I had my suspicions that my adrenals were toast so the results of the test didn’t really come as a shock. It was just another thing added on to my giant plate of health issues.
I read and researched a lot about dealing with this and how to help heal my adrenals. Everything that I read stated that doing HIIT style workouts was a big NO while trying to recover your adrenals. Doing Crossfit was also a definite no because the workouts were just too intense.
It basically comes down to the workouts being too stressful for the body which then causes more of an increase in cortisol which keeps your body in high fight or flight mode. Which keeps the adrenals burned out. It’s a big cycle and again this is for people with adrenal fatigue issues. This doesn’t apply to the average person who isn’t dealing with a health concern.
I was already doing Crossfit and I didn’t really want to give that up. I loved my gym and I loved lifting. I decided to be stubborn and keep on with my workouts.
Can you see where this is going?
My plan failed and came back to bite me in the ass big time. While I did a lot to help my body recover from everything that it was dealing with, I wasn’t willing to give up my choice of exercise.
I eliminated alcohol except for the 1 oz sips I needed to have at work (At the time, I worked in the craft beer industry and needed to sample beer in order to sell it) and those samples were few and far between.
I made sure to always wear blue blocking glasses when doing a lot of computer work, when I watched TV, and when I read in the evenings.
I went to sleep early and made sure to get plenty of rest.
All of these things helped so much yet I wasn’t getting better and my body was still holding on to all the hormonal weight I gained.
It wasn’t until Scott and I decided to move that things started falling into place and I realized what was happening. Once we were certain we were moving out of Fort Collins, we stopped going to the gym every morning out of necessity. We are crunched for time to get everything done that we need to get done for the move. Having that extra few hours in the morning to focus on the move has been so beneficial.
And also eye-opening because it made me realize that despite how much I love Crossfit, it’s just too intense for my body to handle. It’s stressing my body out too much to the point that it cannot heal.
Whaaa? Exercise actually getting in the way of your healing?
Yup. It’s true.
As I looked back on everything, I finally understood why I’m in the current position I’m in. Crossfit was just too much and that’s why I haven’t responded positively to it. Despite going at a slower pace and scaling everything down, it still was just too much for my body and caused it to be more stressed.
Instead of healing, I was actually causing more problems.
It took me a while to understand that and come to terms with it. See stubborn comment.
It’s been a month as of now since I stopped doing Crossfit. Am I all better? Of course not, but I do feel like I’m on the road to recovery. It’s going to take some time to clean all of this up.
Right now I’m not doing Crossfit and I’m not sure when I’ll be able to start that back up again, if I’ll ever be able to. Maybe Crossfit and I just aren’t meant to be. If that’s the case, I’ll be sad but also OK with it. That just means that it’s time for me to find something else to keep this body healthy.
For the remainder of this year I’m going to focus on healing my body and doing what I need to take care of it.
No more feeling guilty over needing rest. No more beating myself up when I don’t see results. This journey is going to take time and patience.
Andie lives in Idaho with her husband and dog (a sweet pittie girl). She’s training to become a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner with a focus on womens’ health and autoimmune conditions. By focusing on whole foods and being active, her goal is to heal her body and to create a healthy work/home/life balance.