Anyone who reads my blog or has seen my website knows that I don't have much faith in mainstream medicine. I do believe that most doctors do genuinely care for their patients so I don't mean to offend anyone who is a doctor that happens to read this but this experience does not change my view and they did not exactly follow the oath of "do no harm."
For the first time in 2 years, I had to miss work due to a virus or bacterial infection. Without a doubt, my immune system has greatly improved in the last few years. When I went to undergrad up in West Virginia, I used to get sinus infections every winter and it was too bad because the first two years, despite significant hyperthyroidism, I was getting close to competitive shape and was ready to run in the next track meet. Yes, more balanced chemistry has surely helped my immune system but I do feel that I am better suited for a warm climate, which is one of the reasons why I choose to live in the Deep South.
Why did I get sick this time? It was well into the 60s last Saturday afternoon then 12 hours later, there was snow on the ground and a strong wind. I did go to church and out to lunch and was probably outside a grand total of 5 minutes but feel that I would have been sick even if I stayed in all day. Plus, it's the heart of flu season and it seems that more people got it than managed to avoid it. On an unrelated note, I read that sudden changes in weather exacerbate unbalanced oxidation rates (hypers get more hyper, hypos get more hypo). That does limit your ability to fight off infections.
So, my workouts weren't great but I was slogging my way through them then after taking a hot shower on Wednesday night in an attempt to get more phlegm out of my system, my temperature shot up. It went as high as 103 so I drank some water and turned down the thermostat and by morning, I was down to 100 (my temperature normally runs in the low 98s). I was so weak that I couldn't do anything on Thursday and didn't get up until it was almost evening. On Friday, I still had a low grade fever but at least I could actually make it to the doctor's office. I don't have a primary care physician and haven't been to a mainstream doctor in 2 years so I had to go to the next town to an office that accepts walk-ins. I don't know of any quick natural fixes for a bacterial infection so I had no other choice.
After a 2 hour wait and a $30 copay, the doctor finally came in to see me. I told him that my sinuses were killing me and during the examination, I could not take a deep breath without coughing. He concluded that it was indeed a bacterial sinus infection as I suspected and gave me an antibiotic that is also used to treat bronchitis. Good call there and thank you for that. The nurse asked me if I was willing to take a shot and I said "sure if it'll help me feel better faster".
Now, on to the bizarre. The shot was done in the butt and the drug was called Deca Durabolin. I have heard of it before since I follow track and field and although the nurse didn't know much about it, I knew that it was an anabolic steroid. Yes, I took it and there will be no denials from me. I now have used steroids! To anyone offended by this, I assure you that it is a one time thing and done for a legitamite medical purpose, not to enhance my performance. For the record, it will be out of my system by my next race. In addition to the antibiotic, he prescribed a cough syrup. It did have a warning that it may cause drowsiness. Can't be too bad right? I started feeling weird after my 2nd dose and of course, I did not take more than the suggested dose. I took it upon myself to do some research on it. I found out that the cough medicine was actually a narcotic and a derivative of codeine. Again, I was in obvious pain at the doctor's office and I'm sure that he really did intend to help me but I didn't need anything even close to that strength. It it were ten times stronger (which is a lot of course), it was be classified as a form of morphine. Now, that is scary. Side effects can include heavy drowsiness, brain fog and loss of awareness. Imagine trying to go to work on that stuff. Yes, there is potential for addiction if it is misused. I'll pass on that stuff and stick to the good old fashion Robitussin. The antibiotic looks to be pretty safe. There is a caution about taking it if you have electrolyte imbalances, which I do. My calcium and magnesium are low while sodium and potassium are high. That's the nature of fast oxidation. However, since I will only be on it for 7 days, I don't have any concerns about its safety for me. Yes, I am beginning to feel better. It's too soon to say how much this will impact my training but I expect to be a "go" for my 10K in 3 weeks and a "go" for my marathon in 9 weeks.