Well, first of all, I don't think this necessarily belongs in the "weight loss" section, but I think this is as good of a fit as any of the options. If you're anything like me, this is one of the nastiest things accompanying hypothyroidism.
I had done some searching in the forums and there are plenty of threads asking about thyroid drugs and screwed up thyroids (a lot of, if not most of, the threads are inquiring about the potential of creating hypothyroidism due to abuse of T3), but not one thread came up specifically on hypothyroidism. The idea to start this thread came to me after Kleen set up his thread on Intermittent Fasting -- something totally unrelated, but a thread that brought together a lot of great minds, experiences and discussion. I'm hoping this will do the same.
For those who haven't read any posts from me, I'll include a shortened version of my story (feel free to read over / skip this part ).
I've always had trouble losing weight, but always assumed it was something I wasn't doing right. So, I ran more. Then, when that wasn't doing what I wanted, I researched training and perfected my weight-training. Then, when that wasn't doing it, I researched nutrition for quite some time and really put a lot of time and effort into my diet and seemingly perfected that. All that time, I was able to lose fat, but it was like pulling teeth and it was at really low calories for someone of my age, size and activity level.
My whole life, I'd been trying to lose weight the entire time I was lifting (so think of the 10 years I was lifting weights, I was simultaneously trying to lose fat; that was the more important goal the entire time). In April / May of last 2010, I got into arguably the best shape of my life and was pretty ripped and cut up at 208 lbs (all natural, too). I went a full month without even one cheat meal during the final push of that (dropping 6.4 lbs and increasing all of my lifts). I treated myself to a splurge day after that and then got back on the horse of a clean diet, though not as strict as that one month was (just normal lifestyle, not like contest prep, but certainly clean).
I managed to get back up to ~220 lbs in a very short amount of time. I was so frustrated and disappointed; back to square one without even really screwing up. At that point, a friend asked me how long I'd been cutting - when he knew it was that strict for those several months on top of all the years, he said your body probably needs a break and you should try switching it up to bulk for a while. I thought that sounded reasonable and thought, "sure, I'll finally add some nice mass and then get back to cutting."
In about 6 weeks I'd added 24 lbs. I was only eating about 3,500 cals/day (mostly clean) and working out regularly, to boot. While I added some good size, I also added a LOT of fat. I wanted to turn back after about 2 weeks of this, seeing my waist line grow, but everyone said that you just focus on growing during a bulk and then worry about cutting when you cut. Well, for normal people, I suppose that's fine. I ended up at about 244 lbs and thought to myself how badly I needed to cut, so I got back to it. I even tried my first PH to help with the process (Epi bridged into H-drol) and it didn't help in my venture, either.
At the start of 2011, I had a hardcore new year cut mapped out and was a few days in before my weight started slowly going up by about a pound every other day with calories ranging from 2,000 to 2,400 while lifting 5 days a week, doing cardio every morning and a 2nd cardio session on my 2 off days.
I finally said to myself that I can't do anything else to help this. It's clearly something out of my control.
I had a full hormonal panel done on January 21st. On February 1st I got my results and saw I have hypothyroidism. My TSH was 5.67.
All this time, I thought I was doing things wrong, but my body was just battling me. All of those years I was busting and busting my back, I could have just addressed my under-active thyroid and who knows where I'd be now.
Now here's the thing; I'm a firm believer in everything happening for a reason. So, there's a reason my life has taken this path. There's something for me to learn from it and I can tell you that I sure know a ton more about nutrition and training than I ever thought I would. And who knows? Maybe part of this experience was that I could help someone else avoid all of the heartache that I've experienced.
I was on 50mcg of T4 for 6 weeks, which brought my TSH down to 3.69, but I lost no weight during that time. An endocrinologist has since bumped me up to 112mcg/day. I've been on that for just past 3 weeks now, and haven't noticed anything yet, either, but I'm still hopeful. I'll go in in the beginning of June for more blood work and then a followup appointment with the endo.
Until then, I'm just doing what I can, working out hard, eating right and doing a lot of praying.
So, this first post ended up being more about my story than anything else, but I plan on adding a lot of quality information and articles to this and I hope you'll do the same. I'll go back to edit a few posts on some specifics of this.
Let's hear from all of you who suffer from hypothyroidism just like me. Share your story. Share your thoughts. Share whatever you feel comfortable sharing with the rest of us. Let's make this a support group as well as an area to find a plethora of information.