Yesterday was destroyed hormones, part I. Today is the second part, destroyed hormones, part II.

Destroyed Hormones Part II

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Destroyed Hormones Part 2 #hormonalhealth #hormones #guthealth

I told you yesterday that I would tell you how I ended up with wound upon wound upon wound, and for me the wounds compounded in what I now call the nasty 5 stages.

{Before I tell you these stages you must know that these are all things that were not good for me. I debated even writing this post because all 5 stages are and can be appropriate for the right person. Take for instance a man who asked me my thoughts on Intermittent Fasting. Because I knew his background, current weight and goals, I also knew that Intermittent Fasting could be a great idea for him. All 5 stages below were horrible for me, but you are not me. If you are similar to me, then the below could very likely apply to you as well.}

The Nasty 5 Stages

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Destroyed Hormones 5 Stages #hormonalhealth #hormones #guthealth

Low Calorie/Low Fat

I participated in this for most of my early life. It reached a culmination around our wedding day (which was almost 7 years ago). During this time, I lost my monthly cycle for almost an entire year. My hormones had been severely tinkered with because my body (as Dr. Schweig said) was simply just trying to survive.

Wound one.

Destroyed Hormones, Part II How I destroyed my thyroid

Excessive 2-a-Day Workouts

I started eating more (still not enough), but then I started doing 2-a-day workouts. I’d do cardio in the morning, and then I’d lift at night. I look back on some of those days and wonder how I did it. It was nuts because I was so tired, but I “had goals,” which were, truth be told, meaningless.

Wound one never healed, and now I had dug in for wound two.

Intermittent Fasting (IF)

Intermittent Fasting (or IF for short) is when you don’t eat breakfast or anything for that matter (except maybe coffee or water) until about 12 or 1 pm, and then you stop eating for the day roughly 8 hours later. Many people have had success managing health issues and losing weight while doing it. In my distorted mind at the time, I thought I would tackle both my gut issues and lose weight by following the rules because IF has been used for both. By this time, though, severe adrenal fatigue had likely already set in and that is the number one reason I should not have engaged in it. Chris Kresser states,

If someone has pretty significant HPA axis dysregulation or adrenal fatigue — so that would manifest as feeling tired when you wake up in the morning even if you get enough sleep, having afternoon energy crashes, not being able to fall asleep or stay asleep, your quality of sleep is poor, you have poor stress tolerance, poor exercise recovery or exercise tolerance, these kind of classic signs of — I’m doing air quotes here — adrenal fatigue, in my experience, intermittent fasting usually makes those patients worse.

Wound one never healed, nor did wound two, and now I welcomed in wound three.

Note: I was doing 16+ hour fasts at the time.

Carb Nite

When I got tired of that, I heard about carb nite and thought it would solve all my problems. I’d eat super clean, almost no carbs for 6 days and then on the 7th (but only after a hard workout), I could indulge in anything and everything.

The more carbs and sugar the better. So for 6 days a week I was starving, and 1 day a week I was miserable by 8pm, full and bloated.

Wound one never healed, nor did two or three. But I was not finished so I worked hard at wound four.

Destroyed Hormones, Part II How I destroyed my thyroid Carb Nite

Carb Backloading

I felt like I was going insane, and I wanted to live a more “normal” life, so when I found out that carb backloading was something “all the lifters” were doing, I engaged in that.

With carb backloading, you essentially live off of fat and protein during the day, then do a hard workout and eat all the carbs (but only if you have a hard workout the day after as well). The idea is that you are feeding the muscles, and also preparing the glycogen stores for the next day’s workout.

So, still disordered, but thought I was doing so in an orderly way. Does that even make sense?!

Trickle Effect

Wound one never healed. Then, wound two never healed. This spiraled to wound three not healing. Wound four never healed. And wound five was my last major wound.

Much of what I describe are what causes hormone imbalance.

When we got Samarah, I stopped everything and anything that had to do with “fitness intensities,” and “diet regimens” (except for those I had to due to my gut issues, which by now had almost reached an all-time high). We got her in November of 2013, but it wasn’t until November of 2014 when I would be diagnosed with severe adrenal fatigue, other hormonal issues and SIBO.

During that final year from 2013-2014, my lack of sleep (averaging 4-6 hours a night) was the straw that broke the camel’s back.

Dr. Schweig explained to me how years of destroying my hormones had caught up to me. “Infertility,” he made note, “was no surprise” since the body screams, “you can’t even take care of yourself, let alone growing and nurturing a child for 9 months.”

I am telling you about my destroyed hormones with the hopes that if you read any of this and said, “me, too,” you’ll stop immediately and start healing your wounds.

There is a whole world out there that will tell you, “after you don’t eat for awhile, you just won’t be hungry.” But for most women, you should never aspire to that. It is not an achievement unless your doctor tells you it is. And even then it’s subjective. Period.

I will have to work, likely, the rest of my life at restoring healthy hormones. I am proud of so many things in my life, but this? This I am actually ashamed of, mostly because I am now fully to blame for “infertility.”

How I let myself get that far, I’ll never know.


But other than working on fixing the issues and the damage that was done, I don’t ever think back to those days and dwell in the darkness. There is no point in looking behind when the future holds the key to healing.

Today I am so much healthier than ever before. I restrict nothing (except what’s medically necessary). I eat when I’m hungry; stop when I’m full.

I never workout two times per day, and I know that 3-4 workouts per week is optimal for me. I weigh 10+ pounds more than before. I’m okay with it creeping even more, so long as I continue getting healthier.

It took me a very long time to arrive here, and this past year has taught me that I like me much more than ever before.

I tend to believe my hormones fully agree.

If you liked this post, you’ll enjoy more truth and real gut healing in A Gutsy Girl’s Master Guide HERE.


Destroyed Hormones Part II 2 hormone #hormones #guthealth #women
Destroyed Hormones Part II #hormones #hormonehealth #healthyliving #lifestyleblogger
How I Destroyed My Hormones, Part II
Destroyed Hormones, Part II The 5 Nasty Stages that lead to destroyed hormones

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  1. This has so much great information out there. Since joining this little fitness community after starting my blog I have been surprised by the “darker” side of health/fitness. I can see how easy it is start down any of those 5 paths as there is lots of positive information out there for them. I have even been tempted in trying things that weren’t actually very healthy for me b/c I thought it would improve performance. Thank you for sharing!

    1. That’s just it…we all see the “positives,” and truthfully, when people saw me that’s what they saw, too. I was my “leanest” then, so surely I was “healthy.” The truth was that I was anything but healthy, and I fully believe now that people must be aware of both sides.

  2. Sigh. When I think back to it, my issues started very young. I had multiple reoccurring issues of strep at 6. Then had mono at 11. Then became a semi-professional ballet dancer with a raging eating disorder and at 18 wound up in the hospital with such bad pernicious anemia I was nearly dead. I married at 24 and after going off of birth control at 27 that I was post menopausal. At about 28 I suspect RA was kicking in but never saw a doctor. At 29 (10 years ago) a number of significant life stressors hit our family and my weight ballooned up and no one diagnosed me with Hashimoto’s until about 2 years ago. I have no doubt there is adrenal fatigue. A doctor recommended AIP just a few months ago, so like you, I have a lot of work to do to heal my body which has been ravaged for almost the last 40 years. But I am determined to get things on track and lice the healthiest and best life I can for the next 50+! ( yes, I plan to live at least that long). It helps to know I am not alone, so thank you for sharing your story

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