March was a long, difficult, busy month getting the new True North Yoga studio ready to open. Then April and May flew by. Class sizes are growing, slowly, and the summer workshop schedule is just about complete. In just over two weeks I'll be heading to Wanderlust for a weekend away with my husband, my son, and yoga. Everything has been falling into place except for one small detail – me.
All these plans were contingent on me being able to get out of bed in the morning. Over the past months that's gotten harder and harder to accomplish. Unexplained body aches, difficulty sleeping despite nearly constant fatigue, a bizarre viral rash on my toes, and nasal allergies followed by a serious sinus infection and cough have brought me to the doctor more times in the last three weeks than the number of times I saw him during all of last year.
I'd stopped training and expected to walk the Adirondack Half-Marathon, the only race I got around to registering for. I'd tried to get back to running, but each time I started I end up hurting all over by the end of the first week. If the muscle pain was where I'd expect it to be, I'd chalk it up to muscle recovery and keep going, but the pain was more general and moved around during the day.
I couldn't figure what was going on with my body. The sinus infection created so much pressure in my head that even yoga had become frustrating. It's getting better with an antibiotic, but not going away fast enough for me.
Tuesday morning I had blood drawn to, as the doctor says, “rule out some things.” I was sure I'd thought of all of them - Lyme, Epstein Barr, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, even cancer. My imagination went crazy, but I missed the easy answer.
The doctor's office called on Wednesday. Everything was normal, except – my vitamin D is too low. The doctor recommended taking a supplement.
15 minutes of online reading confirmed it. Vitamin D deficiency can result in muscle aches, fatigue, low immunity and depression. Sound familiar?
Vitamin D is made in the body with sun exposure. A long winter followed by a dark, rainy spring could certainly account for the low level of vitamin D in my body. It was such an obvious thing, and I never thought of it. If I had, I would be getting ready for a half-Ironman instead of sitting around crying because everything hurts. Frustrating, but there's still that half-marathon on the schedule in the fall, so I'm going to take my vitamin D (and magnesium, because magnesium aids in vitamin D absorption) and get outside (whenever we've got some sun) for my runs. And do lots more Sun Salutations.