Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Steroids are nasty

So I’m pretty sure that my high blood pressure was caused by a combination of pain and the methylprednisolone that I was put on to relieve the pain from my swollen tonsils. This stuff is evil.

I took my last dose of the stuff last Thursday and my blood pressure has been slowly coming back down. But by Friday it had not decreased enough for my concerned coworkers and I had significantly different BP readings from my left and right arms, which apparently is a bad sign. So they gave me an EKG.

Nothing like having to lift up your boob for your coworker to stick electrodes under. The EKG was abnormal, but not heart attack kind of abnormal. My doctor friend who reviewed it said that it was probably nothing and could be connected to the steroids, but that I definitely needed to see my PCP about the high blood pressure. At the doctor yesterday, they took another abnormal EKG and numerous blood pressure readings. By the time I had finally calmed down, it was down to 128/88. Much better than my previous readings of 140/110 and 158/108. Goes to show you how much pain and stress can affect those things. 

My primary care physician agreed that it was most likely nothing, but she is sending me to a cardiologist for an evaluation and stress test just in case. On my 33rd birthday, I get to go see Dr. Okun

This is not how I envisioned spending part of my birthday, but oh well. Jay is probably happy because it means that I’m bailing on book club and now we get to go to dinner instead. And since we’ll be on “the other side of the bridge,” we will have plenty of great restaurant options in Annapolis and Baltimore. I’m sure that everything will be okay, but it will be nice to have him with me at my appointment.

All of that said, I’m not really sure what is going on with my diet right now. I’ve been committed to recording everything I eat with LoseIt, and have remained under my target calories for the past 8 weeks. However, somehow I’ve gained 2 pounds in the last week, while as long as I stick to my plan, I should be losing a pound a week. I think it is probably all water retention from the steroids and that this time of the month isn’t great for me. So I’m trying to be patient. I'm still exercising every other day, if not every day. I've been walking, doing the elliptical, and swimming. Over the weekend I did the stationary cycle and used the rowing machine. So my body seriously needs to get its act together.

Since I’m not sure how the diet is affecting me health-wise, I am trying to keep my saturated fats and sodium low. I caved a bit in the carbs department, but I haven’t completely caved to the point of eating pizza, French bread and French fries. But I did have a rough day last Friday. I had two tater tots, a big slice of delicious pineapple, part of a chocolate dipped banana from Edible Arrangements  and several fried green beans. And too many cocktails at Harry’s. I’m now trying to keep around/under 40-60 net grams of carbs a day and under or around 20 grams of saturated fat a day. My current struggle is with nuts. I am shoveling fistfuls of almonds and walnuts into my mouth. I convince myself that since almonds and walnuts are heart healthy that eating a pound in one sitting is perfectly acceptable.

Okay, I may be exaggerating with eating an entire pound of nuts, but I haven't exactly been counting them out.

In other news, we are running out of time to figure out who is taking care of our critters while we’re away. 

Mind you, this is when we LAND in Brisbane. We are down to 31 days before our flight leaves.

Normally I’d be fine with asking our friends to take care of the chickens, but three weeks is a lot to ask of someone. Plus this vacation is going to require cleaning litter boxes, and I don’t want to ask that of my friends. When you’re spending over ten grand on a vacation, another few hundred bucks for a pet/house sitter shouldn’t be an issue. However, Jay still won’t make a decision on whether he is going to ask a slightly odd guy he knows from the Masons. So I think he just wants me to take care of it. I sent out a message to our book club to ask for recommendations… some of the women have college age kids who might want to earn a few easy bucks. Fingers crossed.

My aunt Nancy has been sending these photos almost daily. I can almost smell the salt in the air.

This picture was taken FROM A McDONALD'S! Seriously, how beautiful is this place that even the McDonald's has this kind of view?

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