Tuesday, February 10, 2015

My Life, and Lyme.

I don't talk a lot about Lyme Disease or my personal struggles with it. Most people either don't understand it, or are blissfully ignorant. Lyme disease is one of those things that you hear about but aren't educated on, something that happens to other people, not to you. If you are one of those people, please take time to educate yourself. Learn. Lyme does not attack only crazy trail runners, nor are you immune because you’re not out playing in the woods every weekend. 
I don’t pretend to know much about Lyme or even Lyme prevention. I have searched Google for everything about Lyme, and mostly what I've learned, is no one knows a lot about Lyme. We know where it comes from, the wide range of symptoms, but there is no "cure", only treatments that CAN help. All I really know is my experience with the disease. I did a lot of internet searches for distance runners with Lyme disease, or running after Lyme. The information just wasn't there, which was part of why I have decided to try and incorporate a little more about Lyme into my blog. I was desperate for success stories, and hope to provide one for someone else.
Over the last 6 months, I have done three different rounds of oral antibiotics, narrowly escaping the surgical implantation of a PICC line for intravenous antibiotics. I have been referred to an infectious disease doctor in Jacksonville, but our beautiful state of Florida doesn't have the greatest health care and I have been having a really difficult time getting in to actually SEE a doctor. Even after the treatments that I have had, I still suffer many of the Lyme symptoms. I am fortunate that they come and go, others aren't so lucky. They last anywhere from 2-3 days, to a week. I get extremely tired, foggy brained, and very sore and achy all over.I sometimes spike fevers and just feel very run down. I have a friend that asked me why I don't take a few days off training and take it easy during my "Lyme Attacks" so I can get rest. I explained that it doesn't help, I can sleep for 12 hours and still feel exhausted when my Lyme flares up. It's not like I am sick and need rest to recover. Lyme is just there. Taking rest time hasn't seemed to make any difference on my recovery time from it so I just push through knowing my running pace will likely be slower than normal, and the workouts will be harder than I expect. 
These last couple days I could feel it coming on, and it hit me full force this morning. My eyes hurt and my body aches. Getting out of bed this morning felt physically impossible. I had a migraine. I put my running shoes on, and left to meet my friend. It was a hard run. My whole body was fighting me, and my brain felt like I was playing pinball with it while I ran (bouncing around in my head). "It's just Lyme" I remind myself, I am stronger than this. I ran 8 miles, will do some deep cleaning today, then I have an 8 hour shift waitressing tonight. I will not succumb to Lyme Disease, and it will not overtake MY life.

"I suffer in silence.
I fight alone."
Also, I highly recommend reading Bart Yasso book, My Life on the Run. Bart Yasso is a running legend who has struggled with Lyme Disease for a long time. 


  1. How long have you had Lyme? I was just diagnosed last fall.

  2. I was diagnosed in Sept 2014 (last fall as well)!