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Old 07-27-2010, 09:07 PM   #1
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Cytomel and intense exercise

Does anyone have any experience with, or links to information about, T3 and intense exercise? I'm trying to sort out how to best time my Cytomel for my speedskating races/workouts, and trying to figure out whether or not I need more T3 on race days. I noticed a huge change in my workouts as soon as I added Cytomel to my Synthroid (back to feeling like I did before hypothyroid), but I've had times when it doesn't seem to "kick in" until partway through a workout, and other times when I suddenly get tired in a workout (without good reason) and I wonder if it's "used up." This especially seems to happen in races/race pace workouts--I "die" for no reason partway through. I feel pretty consistently good throughout the day when I'm not working out--no periods of fatigue, etc--so I think my dosing schedule works well, but I really want to optimize it for my races since it seems to have such a huge effect on my performance. (Not in an artificially "performance enhancing" way just back to feeling good and being able to skate hard, like I used to).

So--does anyone have experience with this, or has anyone come across any articles, etc about the thyroid's response to stress such as maximal exercise? I'm wondering if researchers have even looked into how the thyroid responds to exercise...does it produce more T3 with intense exercise? Does intense exercise "use up" existing T3 more quickly? etc. (I googled, but didn't find anything enlightening...)
THanks!!
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Old 07-28-2010, 03:45 AM   #2
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*MY* dr says i use up my T3 with intense exercise as my need for it at times is higher, especially in the summer when im dieting and doing a lot of sprinting for cardio.

I havent really played with time of the meds vs when i exercise.. there are times i've gotten up and exercied etc and forgot to take my meds.. and there are times, like you, just totally taxed.. what i find in that time is not so much that it might be the t3 (or lack of) but that i totally hit my adrenals and then im wiped.

Not sure what your woe is, (doest state) but have you played with a bit of carbs around training.
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Old 07-28-2010, 08:56 AM   #3
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Inatic, thanks. My woe right now is pretty much "eat anything except sugar." I was LC for many years, but I've really upped the carbs as my skating has gotten more intense. I don't eat much white flour, but do eat whole grains, fruit, potatoes, etc. I try to have more carbs pre/post exercise, and try to have protein and simple carbs right after my workouts. I played around with caffeine (I have one cup of coffee and some diet soda every day) and food before workouts during the 2 years when I was having thyroid symptoms but my levels weren't low enough for a diagnosis, and really didn't find anything that helped. What I've experienced twice now, that has never happened pre-Cytomel, is to be mid-workout and have my energy level totally tanking--and then suddenly (like, in the middle of skating a set of laps) get more and more energized, and end up finishing the workout feeling great. Both times, I started my workout only an hour after my Cytomel dose, and things didn't start improving until 1 1/2 -2 hours after the dose. Yesterday, I was really dragging in the middle of a long endurance workout, to the point that I didn't think I could finish it. Suddenly, between lap 6 and 7 of a 12-lap set, I started feeling better and my lap times dropped significantly and I finished two more sets of laps, feeling great. This NEVER happens (the normal progression is, of course, to get more tired as the workout progresses), so I'm convinced it's a T3 thing. I've also had the converse happen (5 hours after a Cytomel dose)--skating race pace laps, feeling great, then suddenly "die." (again, not usual for me...usually there's a slow decay of lap times as I tire). Since all my skating races (in the winter) are in the morning, and I feel best in general after my second dose of Cytomel, I'm trying to sort out the timing and dosage. My coach wants me to do 3 mid-distance time trials today (all the same distance) , the first one an hour after my afternoon Cytomel dose, the next two 30 and 60 minutes later, to see what effects there are. I'll have to play around with this in the morning, too, to simulate my racing (and see if I need a second dose in the am on race days). I'm just thrilled that the Cytomel seems to be the answer to my performance issues of the last 2 years, and I want to make sure I get it working as well as I possibly can! (I'm also awating the results of my first labs since starting Cytomel 4 weeks ago--I hope my doc doesn't freak if my TSH is low or T3 is higher than he's used to seeing!)
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Old 07-28-2010, 09:11 AM   #4
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maybe you need to take the cytomel after 4hrs , not 5.. when i multi does thru the day, that is what i did.(on ERFA now ) and still take about 3x a day

sometimes i fine DURING the workout but crash later or the next day if very intense.
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Old 07-28-2010, 09:44 AM   #5
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so do you take Cytomel 3x/day? I've wondered if I should switch to that...when I was taking 6.5 2x/day I definitely didn't feel as good in the morning as I did after the second dose (at 1-2 pm), so I changed to 12.5 am/6.25 pm, which is working well in general but needs to be tweaked for exercise (doc prescribed 25 mcg 1x/day, so I haven't asked his advice!). I could certainly do 3x/day to make sure my workout is maximized (and in the winter, workouts are even later--7:30 at night--so I will probably need to do this), but that still leaves the question of races, which typically start at 8-9 am--so I need to be sure I have enough T3 on board, and with the right timing, so I don't "crash" in the middle of the race or between races.

I've never checked adrenals...I'm just hoping they're OK. I've never had next-day crash, but have certainly noticed that I recover better now on T3 than I ever have! (I do have low ferritin, too, which I'm currently taking iron to fix...I was low 2 years ago, though, and brought it back up with no improvement in my skating performance...)
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Old 07-28-2010, 10:50 AM   #6
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i take 3.50grains of ERFA and just split it into 1 1/4 x two and then just 1 grain later.


the low iron will affect fatigue levels as well. mine is low as well and im not very good and keeping it stable.. TOO many things/supplements to get into my day!
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Old 07-28-2010, 06:26 PM   #7
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I know what you mean about the supplements! I'm pretty good about taking the iron, but I don't expect to see much change when my ferritin comes up, since I didn't notice a difference when it improved before.

Just got back from my "T3 Trial"--the Cytomel definitely seemed to "kick in" at close to 2 hours after the dose--my times got significantly faster then, and I felt way better when skating. Still more research to do, but I think I'm starting to figure out what I need to do...
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Old 07-29-2010, 03:13 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lemming View Post
I know what you mean about the supplements! I'm pretty good about taking the iron, but I don't expect to see much change when my ferritin comes up, since I didn't notice a difference when it improved before.

Just got back from my "T3 Trial"--the Cytomel definitely seemed to "kick in" at close to 2 hours after the dose--my times got significantly faster then, and I felt way better when skating. Still more research to do, but I think I'm starting to figure out what I need to do...
yay!! it's all about figuring out what works best for ea of us, as we are all so individual, especially when it come to exercise, age and eating (plans&woes)
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Old 10-19-2011, 09:51 AM   #9
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Struggling with the same timing issues

Wow, I see that I am several months after-the-fact viewing this topic but WOW it thrills me to see it because I have had these same problems with cytomel and hard exercise. I am a cyclist who sometimes does very hard fast workouts and sometimes some very long ones (like over 100 miles). And I have been bedeviled with the same experiences. Without cytomel, taking only levothyroxine (or T4, as it's frequently termed), my exercise abilities gradually tanked. With cytomel added, I have times that I can ride "like I used to" (not like Superman or anything, not 'enhanced' but simply back to my norm of many years). However, I have also had times that I suddenly tank several hours into it and also times when I crash in a big way several hours afterwards or the next day. And the delayed crash thing is very unpleasant! I would love to stay in touch to hear what you figure out from your experiments.
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Old 02-28-2013, 03:48 PM   #10
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T3 and intense exercise

Quote:
Originally Posted by alycatbike View Post
Wow, I see that I am several months after-the-fact viewing this topic but WOW it thrills me to see it because I have had these same problems with cytomel and hard exercise. I am a cyclist who sometimes does very hard fast workouts and sometimes some very long ones (like over 100 miles). And I have been bedeviled with the same experiences. Without cytomel, taking only levothyroxine (or T4, as it's frequently termed), my exercise abilities gradually tanked. With cytomel added, I have times that I can ride "like I used to" (not like Superman or anything, not 'enhanced' but simply back to my norm of many years). However, I have also had times that I suddenly tank several hours into it and also times when I crash in a big way several hours afterwards or the next day. And the delayed crash thing is very unpleasant! I would love to stay in touch to hear what you figure out from your experiments.
I am also a competitive cyclist and have been on Levoxyl for many years. I started T3 about 3 weeks ago, and am starting to notice a difference. Am wondering how it is going for you.
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