I spent most of today studying about and writing out a training plan to climb Mt. Rainier in 2010. This was a decision I made in 2005 when I moved back to Washington State. The goal I set was to get back into shape and lose 20-30 pounds. Climbing Mt. Rainier was the chosen path to reach that goal. In August 2005, I joined a gym and began working out 6 days week .
The next 3 years, the path went through the darkest of valleys. The more I worked out, the more weight I was putting on. It was not muscle! I was gaining weight and inches. Eventually, my strength failed. I would work out in the morning, return home to take a 2 hour nap and go to work. I would need to sleep during the middle of the day. I started to have all kinds of female health issues and problems. My body was not working! I went through several personal trainers who made changes to my diet and supplements. Nothing helped.
Frustrated, I sought medical treatment and got the standard response: I need to watch my diet, exercise more and lose weight. One doctor said my expectations were too high, I was approaching 40 and would not have the same energy level as I did in my 20s. I got prescriptions to treat symptoms but they caused other problems. In January of 2008 I had put on an additional 55 pounds since 2005.
A co-worker recommended her naturopathic doctor in February 2008. That was a pivotal moment. First, I had never had that kind of medical exam. For 90 minutes, she asked me all kinds of questions no medical doctor asked me. I got tests done, most of which I had completed before and there were a few I had never heard of. When I returned 4 weeks later for the results, she looked at me and said, “You must have been through a traumatic experience a few years back.” How she knew that still alludes me!
I’ve been working with this doctor for nearly 2 years. My body is at the point it heals itself the way our bodies are designed to heal. I’ve lost more than the 80 pounds I needed to lose. I also lost way more inches than I intended to, but I’m not fit. So I return to the path that I started out on in 2005 – to climb Mt. Rainier.
The lessons I learned:
- Push through the temptation to find quick fixes or give up. Persevere with integrity to achieve your goals.
- Mental and emotional mountains are just as tough to climb.
- Find paths that work for you.
- Never get discouraged when your path takes you places you never intended to go.
- Learn as much as possible in your valley so that you can enjoy your mountain top.
I’ve learned a lot about health, my body over the past 2 years. I’m getting to the mountain top of health. I will enjoy standing a top Mt. Rainier in 2010!