Angela Naeth

Professional Triathlete, iracelikeagirl founder and coach

May 24th - Back in the mountains, new medication, and 70.3 Chattanooga!

After 70.3 Gulf Coast, I headed back to the East Coast. I had a new sense of accomplishment. Racing season - as ugly as it started, is on!

I somewhat texted Tim as I was flying back, I want to do jump into 70.3 Chattanooga. He didn’t say much, but once home, he said, “I was already thinking you would.”

My alarm bells in my head went off - I was just on a high post race, I am not ready to race in 7 days. Seriously?! I fought it for about 5 minutes, and then, started looking at tickets, connecting with my friends down there, and set the week in motion. My mindset is back. We are racing our way back to health this year, with vengeance! :)

70.3 Chattanooga: this Instagram Post pretty much sums it up! :)   During the week leading into the race, I actually climbed a rung on the health ladder. I went for a solid run mid-week that was faster than I raced in Gulf coast. Like last year, once the bacteria load decreases, the body starts bouncing back. By Thursday morning, I was excited to be racing again. The feeling of being able to push your body is (as I write in the above post), undeniably, is one of the best feelings in the world! Finally, I felt a little of my old self!

In Chattanooga, I had a fantastic time catching up with old friends, meeting new people, and  connecting with members of the IRACELIKEAGIRL team. I had a chance to head to Quintana Roo Head Quarters. This bike company is truly one of a kind! To see how the bike is manufactured, painted and delivered was inspiring. The company has literally thought of everything to make an amazing triathlon bike with ease of use, and delivery! I’ve written on Instagram about QR, and I’m truly honored to be part of the team.

LYME update/medications:

I started a new medication for Babesia - Mepron. Babesia is a parasite co-infection I was diagnosed with last year, along with Bartonella and Lyme (Ticks more often than not carry co-infections with Lyme - those bastards!). We have been treating Bartonella and Lyme for the last 6 weeks, and continue to do so.

One of the symptoms of Babesia is AIR HUNGER - if anyone heard me while I was running in the race, you’d think I was dying. My breathing is LOUD, and asthmatic-like. I use it to my advantage for finding a rhythm (at least that is what I tell myself). It’s as if you can’t get enough air with your breath. After doing more research (again, YOU HAVE TO BE YOUR OWN SELF ADVOCATE!), I realized this could be Babesia, and requested to get on Mepron. All these infections take 4-6 months (roughly) of antibiotics - as far as I have researched, mind you, everyone is different. (Last year I was only on antibiotics for 3-4 months, and Mepron for only about 1.5).

Once you start a new antibiotics/anti-parasitic, the most common result- if you have the infection, is a herx (a die-off of the pests in your system that create inflammation and make you feel crappy). They typically increase the severity of the symptoms - for me, this was/is air hunger. A herx usually happens 48-72 hours after the initiation of the drug.

Just like clock-work, I had a day where for the life of m,e I could not breathe, and had some significant headaches. It actually made me happy because well, that means I’m killing the infection, and will continue to climb my way back to health. (My full regimen is listed below).

As of now, I’m settled back in my home, in Boulder CO, and couldn’t be more excited. I flew here in a snow storm, and drove home in one. Gotta love the mountains! But today, today is what looks like to be, the start of official summer! You’ll find me riding in the mountains, my first love on a bike!

//

A friend of mine sent me this infamous quote: 

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

Theodore Roosevelt

I’m not afraid to fail, in order to win. In life, I believe we live to purify oourselves - to free ourselves of past issues and growth - physically, mentally and spiritually. Some people give in, and give up on this endeavor - perhaps find it years later. I relate this to racing. There are those that give up, and give in. We create layers of an onion to protect ourself and create avoidance patterns of the truth. My truth: fighting Lyme, and dealing with it. I’m not avoiding it. I’m growing from it. If I were to not strip away the negativity and self-doubt (layers of the onion), my life would be a big lump of '$%^ and bring fear. This is where I was mentally prior to 70.3 Gulf Coast. Roosevelt words shine here. Dare Greatly. Truth is everything - and it starts with showing up, and self-belief.

Self belief really means being true to YOUrself! Sometimes that truth is painful, and not fun. My reality is I am fighting off Lyme, and yes, it sucks! So to face it head on, makes me stronger because of it. I don’t think there is a better way to mentally challenge yourself than an illness and fighting for your health back. Out of all the racing, and training I’ve done in the last decade, fighting Lyme has given me the most mentally. I will fight… make the choice to move forward, and never look back!

Current Focus:

  1. Be aware of yourself 

  2. Can Do Mindset

  3. Stay in present 

  4. Trust yourself

//

Current Regimen for LYME as of May 2019: 

  • Cefuroxime 500 mg 1 pill 2 times a day. every other week.

  • Doxycycline 100 mg 2 pill 2 times a day 

  • Nystatin 500,000 2 pills 2 times a day

  • Bactrim DS 1 pill 2 times a day

  • Plaquenil  1 pill 2 times a day 

  • LDN 3.0mg daily

  • Tinizadole 2x week, twice ad ay (Monday and Thursday)

  • Mepron, 5ml 2x day

VID CBD Oil - for everything! 50mg 2x day (www.vid-cbd.com) - (use Code: AN0519 for 20% and free shipping)

Supplements (Thorne.com for most - use code Angela15 for 15%) 

  • Glutathione

  • NAC

  • Curcumin

  • ALA

  • NAC 

  • DETOX2 supplements (bentonite clay) 

  • vitamin C

  • NT factors 

  • CoQ10 

  • Ashwagandha 

  • Stevia

  • Biocidin 

  • Grapefruit seed extract

  • serrapeptase

  • Milk Thistle

  • Monolaurin

  • Viral killing and immune building Herbs. 

Things I do weekly: 

  • Infrared sauna

  • Coffee enemas! 

  • Epsom baths


May 12th Updates! 70.3 Gulf Coast and MINDSET!

Since dealing with Lyme, fighting my way back to racing professionally, it’s been difficult at times (actually A LOT of the time), to stay positive. I have posted, and shared how the last two months have been very difficult for me mentally.  I’ve relied on the support of friends, team iracelikeagirl members, family, and the crew at Red Bull - who have taking me under their wing!, with their health and wellness project thru the Red Bull high performance program.  It takes patience with the medications,  and time to get the bacterial load in my system down ,so my immune system can take over, rather than them (the bacteria) taking over me!   I also work with Craig Manning - an amazing sports psychologist. And of course ,my boyfriend Tim (also my coach), who has been my rock thru this entire process.  

[NOTE: Treating lyme and the journey of gaining your health back is a humbling experience.  It’s a bacteria infection from ticks, that literally takes your body, and mind from under you.  I’m treating it with everything I can (I’ve done my fair share of research!).  I treated it last year - but unfortunately I wasn’t aware that I had to be on antibiotics for a much longer period than I was.   My symptoms came back early Spring.  Symptoms (anxiety, depression, headaches, flu like symptoms, weak body and legs, and neuropathies that literal had me almost bed bound again), occur because a short course of antibiotics does not kill all the bacteria, especially persister bacteria. You can compare it to using a lawn mower to get rid of dandelions.  The antibiotics knock out the growing form of the spirochete , but not the “persister” forms like the root. Later, just like the weed, the bacteria will grow back, and cause relapse (this analogy was taken from a book I read).  I wasn’t aware of this last year..  *For those interested in my current regimen, I have outlined it below (updated for May 2019).]

It’s with these people and support, and some pulling and prodding on Tim’s part, I jumped into my first race of the season.  Truth be told, I was 100% NOT wanting to race.  I fought the idea, and didn’t book a ticket or hotel room, until 4 days prior.  Even when I landed in Florida two days prior to the race, I was texting Tim, “This is just dumb. I feel this race is a mistake. I’m not ready to test things. I know it’s going to just be a big blow to myself.”  (Add to this, I was also premenstrual -  any women (maybe some men!), know how hard it is mentally to be positive during those fun days before your period!).  This mindset continued:  “It’s silly I want my hand held. I get that. I’ll figure it out.  /: I don’t have a basis to what to expect, so I feel overwhelmed with where I’m at physically, and mentally.  Confidence comes with belief. And I don’t have belief in my body.  But I guess part of that is I want to do well, and I really have no idea what that means, and what I can do right now. I say I just want to finish, but I want to be racing to my potential! Perhaps to finish is my potential right now, but then my ego, and understanding of what I know I’m capable of when healthy, $%*)s me up. // I just need to accept where I’m at, and take it in. I can’t rely on anyone, nor assume anything. It comes down to just seeing what I have on race day. Mentally, THAT I know I can control. Whatever the body does I need to accept that, and keep strong in my head.  I want to race, and have the ability to back that statement up! I can’t do that when I only have 60-70% of my body back!” 

Oomph! My mental side WAS A MESS!  We talked some before I headed to bed that night, but my head was all over the map. 

The day before the race, I woke up, reflected on the above texts, and my mind. I was able to shift this negative thought pattern.  

What helped? What made the change?  

1) A good night sleep, ha! 

2) Thinking on gratitude, and self belief. 

and 3) JUST GO HAVE FUN attitude. - that was Tim’s last text to me, and it was enough to shift me in the right direction, and start thinking on this question: 

I asked myself: Why am I here?    I’m here to see where I’m at. I’m here to step back into the ring, and fight! I’m here to take a chance, and focus on having an experience that reveals who I am.  If I stumble, need to walk, and cry,  I’l do just that.  I’ll go into the race with enthusiasm, and love for this sport. If I fail, I did because I gave it what I could.  I’m here simply, because this is what I do. This is my career, and it’s time to see where I’m at. I’m getting my health back and it’s the relentless pursuit of sport I love.  Time to start this dance. 

The mind-shifted. Sometimes, you need a little push from someone who knows you the best. 

Race day came.  I woke up excited. I haven’t felt those pre-race jitters since November and welcomed them.  I reminded myself of my little pep talk I had with myself the day before. I was ready to see what I had.  

… 

I raced!  I had fun! I finished! And…it was ugly. I met some amazing people and had people cheering for me - who doesn’t love that?!   I pushed thru some pain, weak legs and muscles.  I pushed thru with a body functioning at below par and a few cylinders not working. ;)  And that, that I’m proud of.  It’s one BIG step in the right direction.  Albeit, physically I was in NO WAY ready to race, mentally, it was EXACTLY what I needed.    Racing my way back to health - currently I’m in a way better spot than last year at this time and the body is responding faster. I did surprise myself a little. :) And I did have a few tears at the finish. Mission accomplished. 

//  And so, I want to bring this blog back to the real issue and subject at hand: MINDSET. 

We all can falter in this area. And it can make, or break you.  It’s a delicate calibration to find, and it’s definitely not easy to figure out, when things are not going your way.  It takes work.  

A good mental mindset however, starts with SELF BELIEF.  Self belief is the core of who you are. You have to believe in yourself first. If you don’t, that’s when everything falls apart.  Lyme disease [it really should be called an infection!] is coming at me. It’s NOT me. It’s an environmental, external factor that well, is living inside me! It’s a challenge that has come toward me, and beats me down.  It’s part of my physical existence, but, it’s not me!  (Makes me think of the “it’s not you, it’s me” saying to lose a guy). 

And so it’s this mindset - that it’s NOT ME, that calibrates the real me, to believe in myself. This creates the energy to fight this infection. 

Many fall into the trap of letting an injury/illness/relationship/race outcome define them. It’s not who are.  It’s something that is happening outside of you, or to your body. The key is how to navigate that. 

Be strong at your core. That’s what this past weekend helped reignite inside me.  Over the past weekend, these thoughts stood out:  

  • If you’re not willing to fail, you won’t win.   I jumped into the first race of my season, definitely not even close to ready. I had trouble mentally being ok with doing it. My coach suggested it was something I needed. We needed to know where I was at - as we have been just trying to do what I can with training while getting the bacteria load down.   So, I went. I raced. I finished. It was humbling, my ego was a bit hit, but it was something I desperately needed.  My fire was lit. The fun of racing shined through.  

  • Vulnerability is showing up and be seen, when you can’t control the outcome.   I knew I wasn’t going to do anything spectacular come this past weekend at my first 70.3 back.  But to be real, to show up! It was a huge step in the right direction for me.

  • With a pause, we can’t appreciate movement.  Gaining my body and mind back with treatment is literally a gift.  I appreciate my life and body more than I ever thought possible. 

  • Always a minor setback for a major comeback. Enough said! 

  • Fighting is a mindset, Life is an outcome, Healing is a choice.  I heard this on a podcast I listened to a few weeks ago.  Healing is a choice and you need the fighting mindset to have the life you want.   So many can fall victim to and let a disease or illness or injury define them.  

I get a number of emails and messages on social - words from strangers, friends and supporters, that have helped me thru some tough moments. The team, iracelikeagirl is yet another amazing group of ladies who I feel have truly embodied what it means to be a team.  I am so grateful for them! 

I want to share a few words from two special people.  I can’t thank everyone enough for the support in the triathlon community.  It’s amazing what people can do, when they empower one another!  I hope that my fight for life, for this sport will help ignite your own fire and ability to KEEP MOVING FORWARD.  

Maggie: (written to me after my post/story of my first race back): Thank you for reminding me that, as hard and humbling as it is to know your body will not perform at where it has in the past, running the race really is about something bigger. It is about showing yourself, Lyme disease, and all the other stuff that life can throw at you that it can not crush your spirit. Your race today- not just finishing, but being brave enough to put yourself out there and toe the start line- is something to be so proud of. Well done! I admire you so much for all you do, incredible lady!

From Jackie (written to me in an email before my race): 

I understand, when when you say, it is hard to do what you say. It is easy for us to "say the right things" to our athletes, and tell them to believe in themselves, be strong, you can do this, but when it comes to our own selves, we don't do the same. It is hard going from being strong and having so much belief in yourself and being so positive, to almost the complete opposite. 

[The team  IRACELIKEAGIRL does a ZWIFT ride every Wednesday at 6am EST! - I put out the challenge of finding a mantra for racing/training] Mine used to be, "Keep moving forward at all costs. Don't look back. Don't look ahead. Just go."  Right now, for 70.3 Choo,  is simply, "You vs You." It is the old me vs the new me. It is just me against me, meaning, right now I can only do what I can do. I can only compete against me, doing the best I can do RIGHT NOW, not what I used to be able to do, and to simply..finish the damn thing w a smile on my face. 

I know for you, it is a whole different ballgame, being that THIS is your job, your source of income, of survival. However, for now, go out there tomorrow and be Angela. Be the happy, smiley, giggly version of yourself whom everyone loves. Race because you love racing, not to win. Race to prove them wrong. Race to enjoy that you are ABLE to race. Race because you get to do this, not because you have to do this. Race for the love of the sport and why you started it in the first place. 

We need to find our roots again...go back to the early days, when it was just for fun.  Do that...and you will be a winner. Take the stress off and who knows what will happen or transpire this season. Remember, regardless of what happens tomorrow, you are building an amazing brand and you are a role model for women of all shapes, sizes and abilities. Go be you tomorrow!

// 

Some Quick Notes About Lyme Disease

  • Lyme Disease is caused by the Borrelia burgdorferi spirochete, a spiral-shaped bacteria that digs its way into your tissue like a corkscrew.

  • If treated early enough, three to four weeks of antibiotics will cure Lyme Disease. If caught later, treatment is much longer to eradicate the bacterial growth.

  • Lyme Disease doesn’t manifest itself physically (with the exception of a rash at onset). To others, doctors included, someone with Lyme can appear perfectly healthy. Thousands of people suffer for years without a diagnosis.

  • Blood tests for Lyme Disease are only 50-60% accurate. This makes diagnosis difficult, and many go undiagnosed because of it.

  • Doctors who treat longer-term infections are scarce, which makes it a very expensive process. Insurance companies don’t cover most, if any, of the treatment. Lyme treatment is often paid for out of pocket. 

Current Regimen as of May 2019: 

  • Cefuroxime 500 mg 1 pill 2 times a day. every other week.

  • Doxycycline 100 mg 2 pill 2 times a day 

  • Nystatin 500,000 2 pills 2 times a day

  • Bactrim DS 1 pill 2 times a day

  • Plaquenil  1 pill 2 times a day 

  • LDN 3.0mg daily

VID CBD Oil - for everything! 50mg 2x day (www.vid-cbd.com) - (use Code: AN0519 for 20% and free shipping)

Supplements (Thorne.com for most - use code Angela15 for 15%) 

  • Glutathione

  • NAC

  • Curcumin

  • ALA

  • NAC 

  • DETOX2 supplements (bentonite clay) 

  • vitamin C

  • NT factors 

  • CoQ10 

  • Ashwagandha 

  • Stevia

  • Biocidin 

  • Grapefruit seed extract

  • oil of oregano

  • serrapeptase

  • Milk Thistle

  • Monolaurin

  • Viral killing and immune building Herbs. 

Things I do weekly: 

  • Infrared sauna

  • Coffee enemas! 

  • Epsom baths




Press Release: PROFESSIONAL ATHLETE ENDORSES VID-CBD OIL

PROFESSIONAL ATHLETE ENDORSES VID-CBD OIL

       DIVIDE COLORADO (March 27) - Professional triathlete Angela Naeth has become the first career athlete to publicly endorse and be sponsored by “VID-CBD” (cannabinoid oil), citing how it helped her to conquer Lyme Disease.

       Cannabinoid oil, extracted from the marijuana plant, has profound therapeutic effects and is also used by many athletes to speed recovery and reduce the natural inflammatory process caused by strenuous exercise. 

       In a great step forward, towards the availability of wholly natural holistic health and recovery supplements, available to the greater population, the hemp-derived product was deemed legal for public sale in the United States last year by the Department of Agriculture.

       “Angela is a courageous and remarkable athlete and we are proud to have her support,” said Robert Mussen, CEO of Colorado-based High Plateau Pharmaceuticals, which markets VID-CBD.com via the Internet and various retail outlets.

     Canadian-born Naeth, 37, is a world-class 70.3 (“Half-Ironman”) and IRONMAN athlete, who has climbed the winner’s podium 19 times since she began racing professionally 10 years. 

        “I am 100% behind it,” Naeth said of VID-CBD. “I sleep better. I have more energy. I am recovering from my workouts so much better. My anxiety levels have decreased significantly. I generally just feel so much better.”

       Naeth spent more than five months being continuously misdiagnosed, after suffering from the symptoms of Lyme Disease, which began in November of 2017.

       “I found it very difficult to get out of bed, pool swimming was unbearable, I had anxiety, depression, low energy. It came to a point where I couldn’t run anymore or walk down stairs without help, just from these really odd and severe leg pains.”

       Only after a doctor friend recommended she see a Lyme Literate Doctor (LLD), was she properly diagnosed, with actual Lyme Disease and two other co-infections, Babesia and Bartonella.

       Lyme Disease, contracted through a tick’s bite, is often described as an underreported, under-researched and debilitating disease with symptoms mimicking other ailments, such as fatigue, joint pain, sleep disturbance and the flu.

       The specialist suggested that she try CBD oil, which prompted her to contact Mussen, in order to find the best and most well-tested available option. Shortly after finding VID-CBD, Naeth began taking daily doses, in conjunction with the extremely aggressive antibiotic/anti-parasitic regimen that was required to fully treat her infections. Such a strong treatment regimen was very harsh on her body, but the daily use of VID-CBD helped to reduce the negative impacts. 

       “I am looking to benefit from the long-term effects of VID-CBD, as well as to help to keep my Lyme symptoms at bay. So, I take a relatively low dose, daily. I have come to the realization that Lyme disease is a chronic illness, and finding something that can help to relieve pain, with less impact on the body is hard,” Naeth said. “I think that VID-CBD it is a great natural avenue for people suffering with Lyme Disease, or any inflammatory illness, without having to pump chemicals into their bodies.”

      “I am very honored to be partnered with High Plateau Pharmaceuticals,” she said. “I would love to get the word out, to as many people as I can, on how much it has helped me, and continues to help me. I love having the ability to work with the company that, honestly, has changed my life. I want to spread the word.”

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