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James gets some sleep


james452

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Sleep apnea...maybe

Near the end of last challenge, I did a test for sleep apnea. I'm still waiting on results but there's a strong chance I have it. If it is confirmed, then I'll either be on a CPAP, or I'll need surgery. My brother had a similar thing and it was fixed by surgery (tonsil removal), hence there's a chance I'll need it. Regardless of what happens, this is my priority for this challenge. If I need surgery, then I'll probably take a whole month off work. If I need a CPAP, then I'll need to adapt to it.

 

Triathlons again :)

If you read my last challenge, you'll see that I did my first triathlon in 4 years. It was a short distance (250m/10km/3km). The next one I can do is in 2 months time. Me doing this race is contingent on what happens with the sleep apnea. Regardless, I'll be training as if I am doing the race. My priority with training is to improve my running which is definitely my weakness of the three sports. I won't be able to run fast until I lose some weight (currently 100kgs), but I won't be able to easily lose weight until sleep apnea is sorted, so the goal is just adaptation, skills, and building some volume. 

 

Diet Time

This goes with the sleep apnea thing, because I've noticed that my sinuses have been congested lately which affects breathing and sleeping. If I don't have sleep apnea, then it could be something to do with my sinuses, but sleep apnea is more likely. I've been eliminating foods which are causing the congestion and the biggest culprit appears to be coffee :( When I drink it, my face feels like it is on fire. If I drink chai tea, I feel fine. Therefore it's the coffee, and not the caffeine in it. The reason I'm adding dairy to the list of stuff to eliminate is because it can encourage mucus production, and my sister said her congestion went away when she stopped having milk. 

 

Creating a side hustle

I've been reading Chris Guillebeau's Side Hustle book lately on the recommendation of my brother-in-law. I like it because the book is broken down into 27 days, which is effectively 27 steps to complete. I'm making sure to read one day at a time, and to complete the tasks for it. I'm also getting ahead with setting up profiles and a site. Effectively I'll be doing tutoring again for mathematics students, but attempting to extending it by creating guides and courses to sell to students. 

 

 

Diet Quests

  • Reduce/eliminate foods that cause me congestion
    • Coffee
    • Milk
    • Cheese

 

Fitness Quest

Stick to my current schedule, with an emphasis on running

  • Mondays - Swim
  • Tuesdays - Gym
  • Wednesdays - Bike and/or run
  • Thursdays - Gym
  • Fridays - Run or rest
  • Saturdays - Bike or swim
  • Sundays - Run

 

Sleep Quest

  • Record sleep using SnoreLab app
  • Wear mandibular splint every night for 2 weeks (and make sure to clean it well)

 

Side Hustle Quest

  • Complete one task per day as in the Side Hustle book

 

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Following again. Good luck, whatever that may be, with the sleep apnea test. I had similar problems but they were solved by weight loss. I don't think you are anything close to as overweight as I was though. I was basically told that they wouldn't even consider surgery until I had lost some weight but losing weight cured the problem. Go figure :D 

 

I hope you get to run your race. I assume it would be surgery that would stop you from doing it? 

strava - myfitnesspal - Instagram

2019 Roadmap

Spoiler

 

" Always aim for something stupidly crazy." - Charlie Quinn

2019 Races: Cliveden MTR 06/01 | Nuts Challenge 02/03 | Reading Half Marathon 17/03 | W.A.R 27/04 | RRDW 11/05 | Nuclear Oblivion 19/05 | Man vs Lakes 20/07 | Spartan Trifecta Weekend 05-06/10 | OCRWC 11-13/10

 

Current Challenge: First Steps

Previous Challenges: 12 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24

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I love your determination.  I know many people that would be stopped without question by the mere suspicion of something like that.  yet you are determined to fight it out and strive to attend the big race.

 

well done sir!

 

this is what Rangers do; they handle adversity doggedly.  ofc I will be following along so let us know how things go.

https://rebellion.nerdfitness.com/index.php?/topic/116426-im-awake/

the "NEW" normal is good with me! as Life was Never really Normal anyways....

 

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Test results are back!

 

Finally got those sleep study results back. Mild sleep apnea. Apparently I had 6 apneas per hour that night, if it was at 5, then I would be considered normal. 

 

My treatment is weight loss duh, but that's tricky to do with the sleep apnea.

 

Effectively I receive 92% oxygen whilst sleeping but it should be at 100%. Hence I stay mostly in light sleep and rarely go into deep REM sleep. Deep sleep is where your body's metabolism kicks up a notch, and without it, you put on weight easily.

 

Hence to lose weight for the sleep apnea, I need to get a mandibular splint. It's like a fancy mouthguard that alters the shape of your mouth whilst you sleep so you stop snoring and can get more air in. I can't get it until Tuesday, and it will cost about $150. However, that's the trial version that I'll use for 2 weeks to see if it works. If it does, then I'll need a custom fit one, and I might be looking up to $1,000 for it. I'll need to check if my health insurance covers it. I know some of them do, but mine may not.

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2 minutes ago, Sloth the Enduring said:

My wife had one of those $1000 mouth-guards. She found out that the $20 Amazon version worked just as well for her. It made a world of difference in how well both of us sleep. Good luck.

 

I think that will be my plan because I don't think my health insurance will cover it. I don't have too much weight to use. The apnea could go away if I lose about 10kgs, although I'll be aiming for losing 15kgs. 

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11 hours ago, james452 said:

Finally got those sleep study results back. Mild sleep apnea. Apparently I had 6 apneas per hour that night, if it was at 5, then I would be considered normal. 

 

My treatment is weight loss duh, but that's tricky to do with the sleep apnea.

Much better results than it could have been and it gives you a clear goal to hit. 

strava - myfitnesspal - Instagram

2019 Roadmap

Spoiler

 

" Always aim for something stupidly crazy." - Charlie Quinn

2019 Races: Cliveden MTR 06/01 | Nuts Challenge 02/03 | Reading Half Marathon 17/03 | W.A.R 27/04 | RRDW 11/05 | Nuclear Oblivion 19/05 | Man vs Lakes 20/07 | Spartan Trifecta Weekend 05-06/10 | OCRWC 11-13/10

 

Current Challenge: First Steps

Previous Challenges: 12 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24

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Sleepy time

Got the mandibular advancement splint today and will use it for the first time today. It's a trial version, and you can tell it looks simple and cheap (though costs $150 AUD) so still pricey. Hopefully I adjust straight away and get good sleep tonight. I had to go home early yesterday because I was just too fatigued. Hit the sack straight away and slept for 3 hours. Therefore I have a strong need for it.

 

Less Training

I think for the next week or two I'll drop my training load and add a lot of walking into my routine. Once my sleep improves (and hopefully I lose some weight), I'll get back to my regular routine. This means greater focus on diet and sleep.

 

 

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Night one of using the mandibular splint

Ouch. Everything I am going to explain is apparently normal and will take 3-4 days to adjust to.

Woke up with teeth pain, jaw pain, and headaches. I was told to expect this, as the splint moves your lower jaw forward, plus it can be uncomfortable to keep something in your mouth for over 8 hours. However, your mouth adapts to this after a few days. I laid in bed for half an hour with the splint out of my mouth so I could wait for my jaw to feel better. It got better after taking some ibuprofen.

 

Basically, the sleep specialist said that after 3 days, I'll be sleeping like a baby.

 

The positive

Using the SnoreLab app, my snore score has averaged 7 (basically I snore 7% of the night). After 1 night, my score was 1 :) Plus, my girlfriend who sleeps in the other room, said she couldn't hear me snore at all. Basically my snoring was loud enough that she could hear it in a different room. Hence her not hearing it suggests it is working.

 

However, because of the pain, I constantly woke up and therefore couldn't get a good night's sleep. But after I adapt, I should have the best sleep ever :)

 

The number one thing I'm looking forward to is being able to sleep in the same bed as my girlfriend again. The byproduct of that is I'll also lose weight and the sleep apnea might entirely disappear.

 

Long term

I've changed my health insurance to one that covers the cost of these splints. But it may take a few months before I'm allowed to claim it. Hopefully this isn't the case. The proper customised splint can cost up to $1,000, and if insurance won't cover it, then I'll need to use the cheap one.

 

But my long term goal is to lose most of the weight in the next 3 months, such that my sleep apnea goes away. Yet I understand even if I lose weight, it may never go away, at which point, I'll need to figure out how to afford the expensive splint.

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How did your week 1 go? 

strava - myfitnesspal - Instagram

2019 Roadmap

Spoiler

 

" Always aim for something stupidly crazy." - Charlie Quinn

2019 Races: Cliveden MTR 06/01 | Nuts Challenge 02/03 | Reading Half Marathon 17/03 | W.A.R 27/04 | RRDW 11/05 | Nuclear Oblivion 19/05 | Man vs Lakes 20/07 | Spartan Trifecta Weekend 05-06/10 | OCRWC 11-13/10

 

Current Challenge: First Steps

Previous Challenges: 12 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24

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Been using the splint for about 1.5 weeks now. The biggest problem is it's causing too much teeth pain. I tried adjusting it to make it a bit bigger, but then I started snoring again. Last night was the first time I slept without using it, which meant I had to sleep in the lounge room so my snoring wouldn't keep my partner awake at night. This is rather disappointing. I guess I'm most annoyed that the splint is made of rather cheap materials, yet there are plenty of other decent ones available for half the price. It really sounds like the sleep clinic is trying to make money off people by charging a lot for a "trial" splint, then making people upgrade to the $1,000 custom splint. Now this is only usual because in Australia, medical clinics don't try to rip you off.

 

Surgery...maybe

After seeing the sleep clinic, I went to see my GP again (mostly to get my blood test results and a booster shot). We discussed the sleep apnea results, and I mentioned that I have trouble breathing through my nose, so I went to get a CT scan of my sinuses. Turns out I have enlarged adenoids, and this would contribute a lot to my sleep apnea. I'm seeing an ENT specialist next week to find out whether surgery will be necessary.

 

I learnt last night, that my adenoids have been enlarged since I was a child. Originally I thought my parents didn't try to do anything about my snoring (which I've had since I was a child). Turns out they did try stuff, but the doctors just said I would grow into them, which clearly hasn't happened 20 years later. Hence surgery is looking likely. Hopefully I can get it done soon.

 

Good stuff 

I got myself the Garmin Forerunner 935 last week. It normally costs $700 here, but found it second hand for $300. It is awesome. It's a big upgrade from my forerunner 230 (which didn't have heart rate). I mostly like that you can record basically any type of activity. Walks, hikes, skiing, parachuting (yes this is true). I used it for a pool swim and it was pretty good, but it overmeasured the distance I swam. I learnt that every time you stop in a pool, it counts that as one lap. Hence I'll try not to stop in the pool during each lap.

 

Originally I wanted to do a triathlon in early April (and get to use my new watch), but if surgery happens, then I'll choose to skip the race (unless I have surgery after the race). 

 

Depression playing up

Not sure if depression would be the right word. Basically because of all this sleep apnea stuff, my mood the last week or two has been much lower than normal. This compounded with my finances not being in too great a position (basically because my income is variable, which it will increase in a couple of weeks). I track my spending with YNAB, so I am aware of every single dollar I own and where it is going. Because of this medical stuff, I've had to move a lot of long term savings (like money set aside for car insurance), into other categories (like groceries, rent, medical expenses). I actually should be fine, I won't be going into debt. It's just when you have multiple payments of 500-1000 dollars in a couple of months, it gets to you.

 

But looking at the positive side, I know where the problem lies (adenoids), so I know how to fix it. It's just a matter of seeing specialists, working out appointment/surgery times, filling in lots of paperwork, getting insurance sorted, and so on. 

 

The way I've summarised this "depressive episode" is that I've had to adult way too much this last month

 

Looking on the bright side of life

My sister is due to have a baby within the next month. This means I'll be an uncle for the first time which is very exciting. She also has her birthday next week, and we've joked the baby will be born that day. 

 

Relationship with the girlfriend is going strong. She's been very supportive with this sleep apnea stuff (even going out of her way to call the doctors every day asking for results). 

 

My cat is happy again (she tore her cruciate ligament a few months ago, and now it's mostly healed). She basically has a new lease on life and is playing like a kitten again (which is great for a 9.5 year old cat).

 

Started getting some good results in my PhD work again. I was stuck on a problem for the last few months, which ruined my motivation to go to work every day and solve it. However we have a possible solution, so I've been excited to go in again and work on it. Hopefully I have something nice written up within the next few weeks so it will be ready for my 2 year review.

 

That's a lot of stuff

Thanks to those people who asked follow up questions. It's nice to have people support and check in with you. Thanks :)

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12 hours ago, james452 said:

I got myself the Garmin Forerunner 935 last week. It normally costs $700 here, but found it second hand for $300.

Dude! I'm pretty jealous right now  I'd only use it to track runs and can't justify anything nearly that pricey for just that but I like the shiny :P 

strava - myfitnesspal - Instagram

2019 Roadmap

Spoiler

 

" Always aim for something stupidly crazy." - Charlie Quinn

2019 Races: Cliveden MTR 06/01 | Nuts Challenge 02/03 | Reading Half Marathon 17/03 | W.A.R 27/04 | RRDW 11/05 | Nuclear Oblivion 19/05 | Man vs Lakes 20/07 | Spartan Trifecta Weekend 05-06/10 | OCRWC 11-13/10

 

Current Challenge: First Steps

Previous Challenges: 12 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24

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On 24/02/2018 at 2:27 AM, jonfirestar said:

Dude! I'm pretty jealous right now  I'd only use it to track runs and can't justify anything nearly that pricey for just that but I like the shiny :P 

My justification was if I do at least one triathlon, then I can get a triathlon watch, but I still need to save up for it. I guess it was my reward for doing a race. Do you use a watch to track your runs? If you just want to track runs, the Forerunner 235 does a really good job of it.

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8 hours ago, james452 said:

My justification was if I do at least one triathlon, then I can get a triathlon watch, but I still need to save up for it. I guess it was my reward for doing a race. Do you use a watch to track your runs? If you just want to track runs, the Forerunner 235 does a really good job of it.

 

Yeah that's fair. I sometimes find it hard to justify shelling out big sums. I've got a TomTom gps watch that I use for tracking my runs and even that was a struggle to justify to myself. That said the relative low expense of my watch does mean  that I don't worry too much when I wear it to OCR races and bash it about a bit. I'd not want to that if I'd spent more. 

strava - myfitnesspal - Instagram

2019 Roadmap

Spoiler

 

" Always aim for something stupidly crazy." - Charlie Quinn

2019 Races: Cliveden MTR 06/01 | Nuts Challenge 02/03 | Reading Half Marathon 17/03 | W.A.R 27/04 | RRDW 11/05 | Nuclear Oblivion 19/05 | Man vs Lakes 20/07 | Spartan Trifecta Weekend 05-06/10 | OCRWC 11-13/10

 

Current Challenge: First Steps

Previous Challenges: 12 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24

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It's a good news day

A few good things happened today. Firstly, I received my referee report for a paper I submitted, and it's very positive. Just need to make some minor changes, and I'll have my first ever academic paper published :)

 

Secondly, my partner is being offered a job today. This is basically her dream job which is awesome. It's 8 minutes from our house, and pays very well. She just has to undergo some negotiations and get a contract written up, then once she finishes her PhD (hopefully April), she can start working :)

 

Not so good stuff

I'm learning how health insurance for hospital cover works here in Australia. I need surgery to fix stuff in my nose so I can breath and the sleep apnea disappears. I can get this all done for free through Medicare, but I may have to wait 6-24 months to get surgery (which isn't too bad but I'd prefer it sooner). 

 

If I go through my health insurance, I pay a $500 excess and can get surgery within 1 month. Or so I thought.

 

Health insurance covers you up to the scheduled amount. If a surgeon charges more, you have to be out of pocket, which means I'd pay an extra $2,000-$10,000 for a surgery, money which I can't pay. The surgeon I saw, charges that amount.

 

But it's not all bad, because there are a number of surgeons who charge the scheduled amount, so if I go with them, I just pay a $500 hospital excess fee and I get it done quickly.


What this means for me is I have to go and get another consultation (which means paying another $300 out of pocket to get the same surgical prescription), but an extra $300 means I don't have to pay $10,000. 

 

If I knew this earlier, I would have gone straight to the cheaper surgeon. However, it will be my first time ever having surgery, so I'm learning how the system works. My next step is to book an appointment (and hopefully not have to wait 2 months).

 

More good stuff

My sister is due to give birth within the next 4 weeks. She has had some issues with the pregnancy, which means she could deliver early. Hence at any point this month, I could become an Uncle for the first time :) 

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5 hours ago, james452 said:

Firstly, I received my referee report for a paper I submitted, and it's very positive. Just need to make some minor changes, and I'll have my first ever academic paper published :)

Wow, that's wonderful! Congrats!

 

5 hours ago, james452 said:

Secondly, my partner is being offered a job today. This is basically her dream job which is awesome. It's 8 minutes from our house, and pays very well. She just has to undergo some negotiations and get a contract written up, then once she finishes her PhD (hopefully April), she can start working :)

Also wonderful!

 

5 hours ago, james452 said:

But it's not all bad, because there are a number of surgeons who charge the scheduled amount, so if I go with them, I just pay a $500 hospital excess fee and I get it done quickly.


What this means for me is I have to go and get another consultation (which means paying another $300 out of pocket to get the same surgical prescription), but an extra $300 means I don't have to pay $10,000. 

 

If I knew this earlier, I would have gone straight to the cheaper surgeon. However, it will be my first time ever having surgery, so I'm learning how the system works. My next step is to book an appointment (and hopefully not have to wait 2 months).

Sucks that you have to pay for another referral, but at least it's not super expensive. Will choosing the cheaper surgeon also mean that you have to wait longer for the surgery as well?

 

How is the side hustle book/activities coming along?

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On 05/03/2018 at 10:41 PM, james452 said:

 

If I knew this earlier, I would have gone straight to the cheaper surgeon. However, it will be my first time ever having surgery, so I'm learning how the system works. My next step is to book an appointment (and hopefully not have to wait 2 months).

Yeah hindsight doesn't' serve much practical purpose other than to inform future choices. 

strava - myfitnesspal - Instagram

2019 Roadmap

Spoiler

 

" Always aim for something stupidly crazy." - Charlie Quinn

2019 Races: Cliveden MTR 06/01 | Nuts Challenge 02/03 | Reading Half Marathon 17/03 | W.A.R 27/04 | RRDW 11/05 | Nuclear Oblivion 19/05 | Man vs Lakes 20/07 | Spartan Trifecta Weekend 05-06/10 | OCRWC 11-13/10

 

Current Challenge: First Steps

Previous Challenges: 12 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24

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