I hope you all had a restful weekend. Saturday was spent in my hometown visiting Grandma and my family. I didn’t get home until after 10 and to bed until midnight, much to the confusion and chagrin of Marina. She’s definitely an early-to-bed and early-to-rise kitty.
Yesterday was my day to deep clean my apartment, cook for the week ahead and do some beauty routines for the week ahead. I’m glad I got all that I needed to done, but I’m definitely not cut out for one-day weekends. I really need two days to get my own stuff done. It’s anyone’s guess when I’ll get that time back though.
Man, I’m really digressing today.
One my favorite running content creators – Dorothy Beal of Mile Posts – has spent a lot of this year talking about InsideTracker. She will share updates of her various biomarkers as well as sing the praises of InsideTracker for helping her take control of her health and help herself when her doctors weren’t taking her seriously. I’m kind of a nerd and always curious, and was on the fence about ordering InsideTracker for myself.
Granted I know a lot of it’s stress, but I’ve noticed that my body has really changed on me this year. I’m not ready – or willing to – chalk it up to being a woman or getting older and give up on myself. I’ve got a life goal to run 50 marathons by the time I’m 50, and beyond that I plan on staying healthy to enjoy a long, happy life into my 80s. So it’s important to me to take complete control of my health and know how I’m doing.
Additionally, seeing Grandma in the hospital served as the kick in the ass that my time on earth – just like all of us – isn’t really that long, so the sooner I got started taking care of myself, the better. As the meme says – if you don’t make time for your wellness, you’ll have to make time for your illness.
Taking advantage of the Black Friday sales, I decided to purchase an InsideTracker plan.
I liked that InsideTracker has several plans with different biomarkers depending on what your fitness or health goals are. I decided to select the Essentials plan, and add on the Inner Age plan at a discounted rate. The Essentials plan measures the standard biomarkers – HDL/LDL, glucose, cholesterol, triglycerides – as well as some additional biomarkers I don’t think I’ve ever tested for and was curious about – magnesium, creatine kinase, folate and ferritin.
InnerAge 2.0 takes the same biomarkers to determine if your inner age matches your biological age, and then offers pro tips and plans to get improve the Inner Age.
I purchased my plan last Monday. I downloaded my test papers on Wednesday and made my appointment at Quest Diagnostics for Friday morning right before work. Do you all remember how I mentioned the biomarkers earlier? There’s 13 of them I was testing for, and you know what that means right? Needles. I’m still trying to outgrow my aversion to those, although this time around curiosity about my results overrode the aversion.
The phlebotomist (forgive me medical field workers – beyond doctor or nurse, I don’t know specific titles) – was great. We were talking through the draw and I wasn’t really thinking while I was speaking, but I did get her laughing. I remarked that I don’t remember the blood draw taking so long the last time I got one done two years ago.
“Well, we’re also filling up three vials,” she replied.
“Yep.” She was chuckling at me.
My results came back pretty quickly and I was actually quite surprised.
There are three ratings for the biomarkers: optimized, needs work and at risk. Of my 32 biomarkers, 27 were already running at optimal level. This surprised me, since I was sure my folate and ferritin levels would be low. Actually, I figured all of my biomarkers that support athletic performance would be low, since I haven’t been taking care of myself like I should be.
So I was pleasantly proven wrong.
However, I have the five areas I need to improve. I’ll list them out here:
1.) LDL cholesterol – 112 mg/dL. The optimal level is 82 mg/dL. I’m borderline high.
2.) Cholesterol – 211 mg/dL. 168.2 mg/dL is the optimal level. I’m also borderline high here.
3.) Glucose – 93 mg/dL. This needs to be 84.3.
4.) Triglycerides – 78 mg/dL. This needs to be 69.8.
5.) HbA1c – 5.3% when I need to be at 5%.
I was surprised my LDL and total cholesterol was high. I expected my sugars to need some work – it runs in the family and I have a sweet tooth – but I wasn’t expecting to see borderline high cholesterol. That’s my main priority before my next blood draw in March.
So now that I have my results, InsideTracker has given me a plan and some pro tips to get those levels to optimal range. Sleeping seven to nine hours is a non-negotiable, and I’m now going to buy an alpha lipoic acid (ALA) supplement. The other pro tips are to cook at home – which my wallet is pretty much going to make me do – and incorporate olive oil into my cooking. Which I can do.
So friends, I’m taking complete control of my health for me. 2021 was a functional disaster, so why not get a headstart my 2022 “new year, better me” goals? I’ll share my updates here and continue reviewing InsideTracker as I use it. Thanks for staying with me and don’t forget to do something for you today.
Yours in writing and running,