Angela Naeth

Professional Triathlete, iracelikeagirl founder and coach

April 19th Update!

It’s never easy to understand what another person is going through - no matter the cause. It’s only when you walk in someone’s shoes for a mile - which, obviously is not always/ever possible.  Sometimes I feel like this when I’m trying to explain the treatment of Lyme.  It’s complex. By no way is this a post for sympathy, or any of the like. It’s to understand, relate, and help those in similar circumstances - and again, for personal sanity. Writing as I’ve said in the past, is therapeutic to me. Plus, I love to keep my followers (aka, most likely my family!), up-to-date. :) So, it’s really for my Momma. :)  I told Tim the other day, this is worse than going thru Divorce.  Ha! …. and that was ROUGH…  

What’s really happening:  Lyme - in simple terms is bacteria invading a human body.  I’m fighting it (again!) with Antibiotics, and a crapload more.  I’ve done more research, more self-advocacy, and more learning than on any other subject in my life.  

As I continue to kill the bacteria - its die-off creates toxins that are released in the body, and as previously written, make you feel crappy.  But, the more I have these episodes, the more I’m killing.  And, I’m slowly climbing up the stairway to health (heaven!).   Last week I started another antibiotic - Flagyl that caused me quite a bit of this herxing.  I was on the couch for a couple days, and did my best in training.  I bounced out of it though, and currently feel I’m up one staircase from before. I was able to run one day this week where I felt a little of my old self - let’s emphasize FEEL… time says otherwise, but it’s a step up!  

 I also bought a RIFE machine. A rife machine emits frequencies that you set.  Bacteria live/die on certain frequencies.  I have done 3 HIGH doses of the KILL frequency.  I was chatting with a practioner on using it, and of course, he warned me to go slow.  I did NOT do that. And, I paid for it. I’m pretty sure that is why I felt so bad last week, along with the Flagyl. But again, the good news is, the more you kill, the higher on that staircase.  I’ll take it. 

Another tool I bought is a portable infrared sauna for detoxing.  Detoxing becomes very important to get rid of the toxins in your body (sounds about right!).  It’s legit. I have used it twice thus far. “Nuking the bacteria” as I like to think of it. :-)

I have another doctor appointment next week.  My head is back to a good space. It’s crazy how nuts you go when bacteria builds. I legitimately felt like my mind was getting hijacked - sad, depressed, irritable. I’m glad to say that my smile is back. 

Other Shenanigans: 

TOPO athletic shoes is just up the road so I reached out to catch up.  I headed out and spent a few hours with Tony Post and his amazing team.  We went over the new shoes coming (One this May!) and future models. I am STOKED for what’s to come. I got to take a pair of the new shoe coming out and have been testing them out. It might be my new go-to shoe.  It’s light, and a bit more cushion than previous models I was wearing.  They also just released the new Fly-Lite 3 which is in the mail as we speak.  I’m definitely taking this time to test all the shoes in their lineup (I currently use the Ultrafly2).  - FYI:  Angela10 gives you 10% at www.topoathletic.com

Red Bull Visit! - I’m one of the luckiest athletes in the world. To be a Red Bull athlete is simply amazing.  I headed to Red Bull HQ for their Hight Performance Program of Health and Well-being. More to come on this but it was one of the most influential 2 days of my life. I am very excited about this project and will dive into more detail as it progresses.  The goal is to define what health and well-being is to me, an athlete and also help me become better, in all aspects of my life.  We have a nutritionist, psychologist(s), scientist, medical doctors , physiologists, basically any person with a -gist behind their name on board. I learned more on the female menstrual cycle, my psychological makeup, what I’m missing.  I have a team behind me and to be in the position I am fighting Lyme and returning back to health - I couldn’t have a better crew behind me. It really does take a team and I’m so excited for how I KNOW I will change as a person, and athlete this year.  I’m still trying to process everything from the visit.  The crew will be following myself and 2 others athletes for 6 months. I’ll be sure to write more on this. 

Hope you all have a great Easter Weekend! :) I’m going to continue finding that hop in my step! -

April 10th - New antibiotic, herxing and what?! Spring to my step!

Treating lyme is like being on a roller coaster. The ups, the downs, the excitement, and the dreaded anticipation of the fall. As much as this analogy is used to explain many experieces/situations, it’s the first one that came to my mind… (And for the record, I hate roller coasters).

Since my first post, 10 days ago, A LOT has happened. - I have seen improvements with the antibiotics, I herxed - more on that in a bit, and, I’m finally smiling.

Lyme - in simple terms, is a bacterial infection. You can have a number of bacterial infections (co-infections) that run alongside Lyme, when/if you get bit by a tick (see previous posts on my story). They can then proliferate inside you, causing all sorts of symptoms, and issues.

When I was first diagnosed, I had Borrelia (Lyme), Babesia and Bartonella. These ‘bugs’ need to be killed in order to be healthy. In doing so (being killed), when they do die, they release toxins - which make you feel like S%^*. This is called HERXING. You want these to happen. It means you’re killing the bad guys (I like to pretend I have a machine gun and I’m going at it with full force - ha!).

When I went back to my doctor, I told him, “I want to annihilate these bastards. I want to take the most powerful, and largest dose possible for everything.” My doctor, a very calm man you could say, simply replied, “You’re definitely not without fight. And, you’re very impatient. Lyme - you need patience.” He’s right on all.

Bacteria - as it grows in your body, and you hit it with antibiotics, can change form - it can go from a squirrly worm looking thing (spirochete) to a round cyst, covered in a dense film. This film is like a force-field- It doesn’t allow antibiotics to kill it. When it’s ‘safe’ again for it to grow, it’ll come out of cyst form, and start to duplicate. Bacteria goes everywhere in the body. Certain antibiotics can kill certain forms, and types of bacteria.

Therefore, you want to take a number of antibiotics, Lyme treatment is not a simple one. It’s a test to see how your body will respond to an antibiotic, herxing and slowly climbing the stairway to health. 1 step forward, 2 steps back, 2 steps forward, 1 step back (its definitely a dance). But, always a little higher/better than when you started (You can also take herbs,which I am adding soon).

I started the 2 antibiotics on April 1st. I went to Masters swimming on Saturday morning. By the time I got home, I was a useless sack of potatoes - not even an edible type (funny?! - ha). Tim (my boyfriend), was away, and I was very much in the hurt locker. I was herxing. He’s a rock in my life, and when I feel like crap, he tends to keep me smiling. Herx symptoms are like the flu, plus worsening of any/all of your symptoms from the infection . Headache, nausea, DEAD body and legs. And simply just a very aching body that feels like it’s burning from the inside. It SUCKS.

By Monday though, I was feeling a little better. I road my bike, and felt OK. My current symptoms in lyme are primarily muscle and body weakness, and pain. If you can imagine what your legs feel after running a marathon, along with the inability to get them to move in a coordinated fashion as you walk, with no feeling of stability, and finally, the feeling you’re walking in quick stand - well, that’s what I feel, at it’s worst.

It amazes me how an infection can literally take you (your body AND mind) over. A few weeks ago, I woke up in the middle of the night, and had a panic attack (symptom of lyme and co-infections). Who does that?! It was scary as hell. My anxiety levels were thru the roof and I was finding my mind going into some dark thoughts (all symptoms of Lyme).

This, and the body symptoms - you feel like you’re going nuts. I explain it to Tim, in very simple terms - I feel completely F*$%^’d up. The last few weeks, as I wrote in my previous post, has been a little wishy-washy in training. A few good days, a few bad ones. Running has been, to say the least, quite difficult, and humbling. Slow, and very short. I have been doing some step mill for cross training. Swimming and riding - I’m supported by the bike/water so I have some semblance of good training on some days - I’m just a little slower from the muscle weakness, and pain.

The good news: after this weekend’s HERX, things are progressing quite quickly (the excited anticipation on the roller coaster - insert huge smile here). Running - I was able to progress from a mere 20-minutes at a snails pace to today: 40 minutes at a sloth pace (I believe sloths move faster than snails?). It was IMPROVEMENT. And to top that off, I rode 3 hours today at my standard wattage. All last week, it was tough for me to get past 1hr40. Yeah!

I have the fitness, I just can’t access it yet. But, the annihilation has begun. I had another call with my doctor, and we decided we’re going to add another antibiotic (much to my insistence). This will help kill the different forms of the bacteria.

I will probably have a HERX. I want to get sick - so I can get better. It’s like having the hangover FIRST, or eating the no-salt lentil soup you grandmother gave you as a kid, so you can then get that bowl of ice-cream. Sweet rewards. I eat anything to have the chocolate.

…. So, cheers to Herxing, cheers to feeling better., and cheers as I say “bottom’s up”, with one nasty Eggermeister shot (I googled nastiest shots ever - this one came in the top 10. It’s Jaegermeister and a pickled egg). For those that don’t get my humor, I’m relating it to the upcoming herxing, and health. …. At least, I can make myself laugh. hahaha :) …

Other items/quick ones:

1) I bought a RIFE machine (high frequency machine - Google it. I’m experimenting on how to kill these bugs to my best capacity).

2) I upped my supplements of THORNE nutrition products (If you’re in for some great supplements, use code Angela15 at thorne.com *sponsor plug but seriously, great supplements). I currently take an array of them, and also VID CBD oil, and over 150 (yes, 150!) Billion probiotics.

3) Seeing progress has been the best. I have some semblance of my old self. Albeit slow, it is very exciting that I see I can do just a little more every day.

4) I continue to work on a one-day-at-a-time philosophy. Because truthfully, it’s hard to plan when you’re treating Lyme. You don’t know when you’ll feel good. I’m excited to see the changes, and also, to be on this path. That first race is just on the horizon.


April 1st - 2019 Update!

An update of sorts, and back to it! 

Over the past weeks, I’ve been scouring the internet for answers. Answers, connection, something that I can say, ‘hey! That’s what I’m going thru! How can this happen again?!’ … There’s articles, forums and some blogs, but nothing that I felt was providing me any insight.  After some of my own reflection, and chatting with those close to me, doing some back and forth in my head, I’ve decided I need to be the one to create my own answers - and use what I’ve done in the past year, being public about Lyme, and keep the forward momentum in both my health, sport, and hopefully, continue to help others.

I had a lot of people connect with me last year when I was first diagnosed with Lyme.  It was helpful to me. I could relate, I could try, and support. And most importantly, I realized the NEED to bring awareness to what it is.

 So here’s to my journey and an inside of my training/racing/health. A blog I plan to keep up to date - real and raw, and also, very much unedited.  I’ll warn you now, I’m not the best at editing, I do long-winded sentences at times, and some of my paragraph forming and/or writing can go in circles.   But, the raw, unedited, make it good for public writing, will not be here.( I will do my best, but I will not be editing 10x over. I’ll lose the desire to keep it up. I know myself too well. :) ). 

As most who have been following me know, last late April/early May, after a number of months of the unknown, I was diagnosed with Lyme.  

The previous posts and these articles below go into some detail on how I eventually felt good enough to get off antibiotics, and felt strong enough to race at Ironman World Championships. 

https://www.redbull.com/us-en/theredbulletin/angela-naeth-champion-triathlete

https://blog.topoathletic.com/poker-face/

https://triathlonmagazine.ca/feature/angela-naeth-from-barely-being-able-to-walk-to-eighth-at-kona/

http://www.ironman.com/triathlon/news/articles/2018/10/checking-in-with-angela-naeth.aspx#axzz5UchMgg5Z

 https://www.triathlete.com/2018/11/lifestyle/how-these-professional-athletes-overcame-lyme-disease_337483

https://triathlonmagazine.ca/feature/angela-naeth-from-barely-being-able-to-walk-to-eighth-at-kona/ 

I’d say I had one hell of a year, placing 8th at Worlds ,and went on to race another Ironman, and half-ironman weeks later.  It was an amazing end to 2018, and had/has me hungry for more. 

We are now in Spring of 2019 and I had a good winter build - spending almost 7 weeks in Florida.  I had some great training weeks.  During this time, I got a little tired, and sore.  I kept telling Tim (my coach and boyfriend), I feel Lyme is coming back. It was a little bit of a joke - but at the back of my mind, it wasn’t. 

I knew the feeling, and perhaps I was just a bit paranoid - to say the least!   I was having some anxiety - that was the first of the symptoms along with my quads feeling off.  I could feel something was not right. I kept training, and I’d have some pretty good days, and some not so good - Typical for any athlete.

But eventually, some of the symptoms I had last year started to appear - specifically high anxiety, body weakness, heavy, heavy legs, and inability to find stability in my body, when running. The feeling of having my mind-body not working together right (weak legs and arms, and the feeling of weighted limbs that are uncoordinated) started to creep up (these are all symptoms of Lyme). 

To make a long story a bit shorter, the last few weeks, my training peaks account has seen less green boxes, and more red/orange that I like to see.  And so, I went back to my Lyme doctor.  

Dr. Satnick explained to me that Lyme treatment, and recovery is a journey. Yeah, but I thought I was over this journey?!  I was 100% in the clear! - I was racing, placing 8th in the World! How can this be??!   He looked at me and said,  “We can get you back to where you were. Healthy and racing. But, Lyme is a journey.  Everyone is different. Protocols vary. We go with how your body responds. We know what helped last year, and so, we build from there.”

Lyme treatment is not a one simple route. It’s multi-systemic. If you don’t get all the bacteria out of your system, even one simple spirochete that lies dormant in your system - can build an army inside you, and eventually take over.  As an athlete, I’m very aware on how I feel - perhaps too subjective, but when you feel the symptoms of Lyme - you just know. 

I was healthy enough to overcome the bacteria. I assumed my immune system had killed everything with the antibiotic regimen I was on last year, and my continued health and racing.  Looking back, I wouldn’t haven changed what we did - as I was healthy. I was back to my old self.  But now, knowing more, I would have done more research on what I had to do to keep that going - supplements, immune support, more testing.

Retrospective thinking - really does nothing. Woulda’ coulda’ shoulda’… and really, I don’t know if anything of that would have done anything.   I believe we did everything right last year. Hell, I went from being hardly being able to walk,  to placing 8th in Kona. I got this.

So, for a quick update, my body is weakened by Lyme and I’ve had some pretty bad days - mentally and physically. I’m now on two antibiotic (doxycycline and bactrim),and a number of supplements. I will be going on a couple more (as it’s best found that you need to be on more than one to kill all the types of bacteria forms).  I use CBD oil and other vitamins and minerals for support. They help immensely. 

The good news is, the doctor feels it’s only the Lyme bacteria, and not the co-infections I was dealing with last year.  My symptoms are typical Lyme - and when on antibiotics, you typically feel worse before you get better (you HERX - die off of bacteria cause toxins in your system and you become more sick for a day or two and build back up). 

I’m weak, and I’ve had a few rough days of self pity, sadness, depression.  My boyfriend, knows it too well.  I smile as I write this - because I’m finally taking myself out of my own little anguish - writing is very therapeutic.  I can fight these damn pests. I did it once, I can do it again.  I’ve learned that we, as humans can overcome amazing feats. My goal is to instill hope ,and support all those currently fighting Lyme, who have had Lyme and well, to continue pushing my way forward.

I find strength in sharing this journey. It helped me immensely last year.  Triathlon and it’s community have saved my life in more ways than one. I’m determined to not let this hold me back. It’s a process.   If you would have asked me yesterday, I would have thrown in the towel in tears.  But I also know, that’s not me. I’m a fighter. Relentless. 

To those looking for answers on how to treat lyme, I’m not here to give that advice. I will tell you exactly what I’ve been doing, and have taken though. I will give you insight into my training, days, and feelings/ideas, and perhaps a joke here and there :) (I tend to think I’m funny). 

I will do this, perhaps a lot for myself - as it keeps me sane, but also for those who have supported me in more ways than one.  i was overwhelmed with the support I had last year - from friends, sponsors, the gals on IRACELIKEAGIRL, supporters to complete strangers. 

So here’s to pushing forward, and crushing it!    

More to come! 

For those interested in the treatment: 

Last year’s medications and timeline: 

  1. Doxycycline  + Nystatin and Cholestrymanine  stated April 30th

  2. Bactrim - started May 10th

  3. Flagyl - May 14th

  4. CBD oil / LDN - June

  5. Stopped these antibiotics mid July

  6. Went on Meprone (antibiotic) August for 4 weeks.

  7. Used I nfrared Sauna, detox supplements, and a host of vitamins/minerals.

Current Regimen: 

  1. Doxycycline 100mg 2x day

  2. Bactrim - 2x day

  3. Nystatin 500,000 2x day

  4. CBD oil / LDN 2x day (1.5 droppers full)

  5. Magnesium, other supplements to help support the immune system and previous medications. 






Update Oct 7th! - 6 days out from Kona Ironman World Championships!

It’s been a while since my last update, and I’m now on the Big Island of Hawaii to race the Ironman World Championships!  I am so excited to finally race in Kona! I had been hoping to get a spot, and when I heard the news I was just so amazed that we were able to salvage one of the most difficult seasons of my career. So, it is a bit bittersweet to have the opportunity to head over to the Big Island to race. I’m not even looking at it as a race. This time around it is going to be a celebration, a big one!

Quite honestly, being hit with Lyme’s Disease, and its co-infections, and going undiagnosed for several months, really threw me for a loop. I felt horrible for about four or five months, with unexplained deep fatigue, muscle soreness, weakness, depression, and who knows what else. I thought that I was going nuts! And sometimes, I was. The treatments have been a journey. They are pretty aggressive, with several months of multiple antibiotics, which while helping to make me better, was leaving my body wasted. So, to have the opportunity to race in Kona, despite all of this, is both a blessing and an honor.

It also comes with a great deal of gratitude. This truly has taken a village, and it wouldn’t have been possible without those who have supported me along the way, including my sponsors, my family, my friends, my manager, my doctors, as well as my boyfriend and his family. Going from not being able to walk down the stairs to racing in IRONMAN World Championship, it is their support that truly got me through some of my most difficult times, both mentally and physically. Just thinking about the effort and support, I have nothing but 100% focus on doing my best in honor of that.

I have done a number of Ironman’s this year (4 if counting!), and it is a testament to the journey that I have been on. Each race has been an improvement, and a learning experience of how to train and race while on all of these different antibiotic medications. There were times when my body’s response to the different medications seemed quite unpredictable, and I just never knew what to expect, from one day to the next.

Throughout this process I have learned what, and how, normal should feel. I have had to adapt to a different version of normal, and it has taken a lot of getting used to. But, I feel like I am starting to really understand it. And, if I am being honest, though I have I done four IRONMANs, in a relatively short time, I am actually quite fresh. I really just started logging any real run mileage over the past few weeks. Because my health was so sporadic, my training from May through mid-August were pretty fractured. I did what I could, when I could, and it was kind of all over the place. We decided to give qualifying for Kona a shot, just because you only get so many chances. So, we mapped out a path, and decided that we would take it one race at a time. It really became one day at a time. And sometimes, one workout at a time.

As a result, the races were hard single day events, but I never got beat up by a full-on training cycle, and IRONMAN build-up. Tim has me hitting Kona in what he would call a mid-cycle of my training. Because it has been such a screwy year, Kona is not going to be the be-all, end-all. I am planning on a full set of races through the end of the year. It is our goal to hit Kona on an upswing in my fitness. I won’t be razor-sharp, but I do feel like I am just now getting into the best shape that I have been in all year. We plan to build on where I am, now, through the remainder of the season. I look forward to seeing what I can do, and continue to gain momentum! 

The biggest challenge has been accepting each day, and what it brings.  At the same time, aside from one minor setback, September has been the most stable period over the past year. When first diagnosed, my symptoms kind of took over my life. I was struggling to get out of bed. Stairs were menacing, at best. The first couple of months were very difficult, because I just never knew what to expect from one day to the next. Some days I felt okay, and others I was sick in bed. The progression was very slow, and often very difficult to see. But, it has gone pretty much exactly as the doctor described it would be.

When I was able to get out of my own head, and see the slow but steady progress, I started to gain some hope. Lyme’s made me feel deeply fatigued, and consistently nauseous, and like I had the flu, for a much longer period than anyone should have the flu. But, it would come and it would go. One of the co-infections, babesia, greatly affected my muscles, making it difficult to stand, walk stairs, get in and out of the car, etc. My legs constantly felt like I had run a half-marathon the day before. The running that I could do, was neither fast, nor pretty.

But, little by little, by little it got better and better, and better. The progression was humbling. It taught me patience, and made me appreciate both a healthy body, and this sport, more and more. I can’t thank Tim enough. He went through the thick of it with me. Going from crying in the middle of the night, because my body ached, and my mind was depressed, to running intervals, on the track with him, last week – It has been quite a journey.  My health is coming back!  

Ironman World Championships is October 13th!  I’m so very grateful with the people in my life who have helped me get back on my feet literally and figuratively, and have supported me throughout.  To enjoy the experience, push myself to my abilities and find that magic and energy that comes when racing a World Championship event - that’s what I’m going to do. 

I hope to bring awareness to Lyme disease and help others learn about Lyme/ I have been humbled by the many people who have reached out to me, just to let me know that I had played a role in their being diagnosed with Lyme’s after suffering, for so long, with mysterious symptoms. That makes me smile, inside and out!

(Thanks to Topo Athletic for the video to help raise awareness for Lyme: https://youtu.be/BDTrly7yarg!

Update on IRACELIKEAGIRL:

We’re just opening membership for our 3rd year! It has been such a great avenue to meet new females, and to help to support them in the sport, and feel their support for me! It has been a great way for me to really dive into what this sport is all about - a community! The support we have for one another and the ability to meet members at races, and to cheer for them on course, has been simply amazing and fun! It brings me back to why I do this sport - the people, the community, the fun, support, and inspiration that you get from others.  My sponsors have supported us all along the way. It is my hope to continue to build these relationships, in order to help our members in all aspects of triathlon, be it education, support, gear, as well as  a global community of women - all connected through the team.  In the future, I plan to grow the brand and team into events and camps. We have our first camp coming this January in Clermont, FL, and it is already sold out! I would love to create a fund for younger athletes in the sport, beginners, and mothers who need that extra support! 

Registration for 2019 can be found here: www.iracelikeagirl.com/membership-info (we are limiting membership and already halfway there!)* 

And finally! 2019 Coaching!  I love this aspect of my career and helping others achieve their personal best in racing and training.  It’s been an honor to race alongside and be part of their own journey.  *limited spots available  www.angelanaeth.com 

Keep Moving Forward

Keep Moving Forward…

Three words that are now a daily mantra. My boyfriend told them to me after 70.3 Los Cabos in late November of last year. I was getting some odd leg pain that would come and go, and found it difficult to train sometimes. I never thought much of the pain until after 70.3 Bahrain, when we flew over 14 hours in each direction.  My right leg was inflamed, sore and I couldn’t walk after the race properly.  We chalked it up to the long travel and it was my last race of the season. It was time for a quick reset, anyhow, so rest was already on the schedule.  

But the two weeks off didn’t help.  That was the start of many symptoms I developed over the ensuing months.  I kept getting extreme pain in my torso, hips, quads… that would subside for a bit, but then come back. I was not recovering well from workouts, and I was willing myself to get out of bed most days.  I was getting depressed, I found it hard to work at a computer without the font 4x the normal size. I couldn’t sleep, I had high anxiety, and depression was starting to set in. This was not the normal me. 

…  My timeline, symptoms and narrative is like most people who discover they have Lyme disease - by going to numerous doctors, normal blood tests (most), and thinking that these random excruciating pains, in joints and muscles, and extreme fatigue are just in their head or attributable to something else.  Lyme disease effects everyone differently and like 40-50% of the people who develop the disease, I don't remember a bite from a tick.

My hope is that, if someone has any mystery symptoms, that often elude doctors, that they can consider the possibility of Lyme and/or other tick-borne illnesses, and can get the proper testing to find out. 

Next entry: My full timeline of my symptoms, how I came to my diagnosis, my treatment regiment to date, and what I’ve learned, so far.   

Here’s some quick facts on Lyme Disease you might not have been aware of! 

  • Lyme disease is a tick-borne illness from the bacteria Borrelia
  • It comes from a tick bite that only 40-60% ever remember
  • The tick carries infectious bacteria(s), so co-infections are common
  • These infections are anaerobic and spread though out your body, to first where you lack oxygen…i.e. joints
  • There is typically an incubation period after the bite from anywhere between 3 and 30 days
  • Most can often pinpoint an unexplained sickness, at some point after a bite
  • Joints start aching, and other symptoms start to develop - muscle pain, fatigue, brain fog, suppressed mood and many, many more. 
  • The bacteria then get dormant and start to multiply, and regresses into the body. 
  • The bacteria move onto your brain, liver, kidneys and muscles, and can lie dormant for indefinite periods
  • After acute stressors (ie. racing, training hard, travel, etc.) they can start wreaking havoc on the body
  • ·Most standard Lyme tests fail
  • Many, many doctors do not understand Lyme
  • Barbara Johnson, an expert with the CDC Lyme program, reveals that in testing for Lyme “the current two-tier method is positive in only 31 percent of those with erythema migrans (the bull’s-eye rash associated with Lyme disease). This means that out of 100 patients who have Lyme disease, we might misdiagnose 69 of them, leaving their infections untreated … “

    If you or know someone who may feel ill, yet look so healthy, consider going to a doctor that specializes in Lyme. They are typically referred to as Lyme Literate Medical Doctors (LLMDs). There are DNA tests that identify Lyme where the standard testing fails. 

Diagnosed With Lyme

Diagnosed with Lyme. 

I have recently been diagnosed with Lyme disease, a tick-borne illness, alongside two other tick-borne pathogens/co-infections. I am a professional triathlete, and fully rely on my body to make a living, as well as doing the things that I most enjoy. Since November, I started to struggle using my body for these things, with unexplained muscle pain and fatigue. With months lost to doctors, PTs, and myself all shaking our heads, I started down the path towards Lyme. I had X-Rays, MRIs, countless blood tests…They all pointed to inflammation, and I was told that I just needed to take some time off. The standard Lyme testing protocol came back negative. But I am nothing, if not consistently persistent, and found myself a Lyme specialist who ran some deeper testing, and found the infections.

Over the past few weeks I have begun the process of educating myself on all things Lyme. I have reached out, and spoken, to countless people about their experiences. Some athletes, some not, all in an attempt to understand what my journey might look like, and how this could affect me, as a person and as an athlete.

So, because of this, and how frustrating the experience has been, I want to help bring awareness to this illness. Lyme disease is something that affects people in many, many different ways, and looks like many, many different things, often going mis- or un-diagnosed, for years.  My hope is that, if someone has any of these mystery symptoms, that often elude doctors, that they can consider the possibility of Lyme and/or other tick-borne illnesses, and can get the proper testing to find out. According to the CDC, between about 300,000 and 500,000 go undiagnosed, each year, with these illnesses on the rise and growing at an increasing rate! If not caught early, Lyme disease and other tick-borne illness can have devastating effects on someone’s life. 

In some cases the symptoms can clear up quickly, with proper diagnoses and treatments. In others, it can be a long uncertain road. As of right now, it looks as though I may be on a steady path forward, but only time will tell. I intend to use this blog as a chronicle of my own journey, and hope to help others to more quickly identify the possibility of the infection(s), how to properly diagnose them, and how best to work with the treatments to come. And, most importantly, my return to health. I want to help others avoid the ambiguity and confusion that I experienced, so that they can start their own path to health as quickly as possible.

Next post: http://www.angelanaeth.com/updates/2018/5/15/keep-moving-forwards