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Thread: What has long term AC done to your body?

  1. #1

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    Default What has long term AC done to your body?

    I hope this doesn't come across as shallow - in the scheme of trying to have a baby I know this isn't important - however, I am wondering if whether what has happened to my body over the past year is common.

    I've done 4 IVF cycles & have had 2 m/c's - most recently 2 weeks ago, but very early at 5 weeks. I am finding that most of my pants can't close around the waist (this has been true since after my 1st or 2nd ivf cycle). I have tried to take a honest look at myself in the mirror, and I think that the only place I have excess/new weight is around my belly so it's not what I would call a general weight gain. Is this from the IVF drugs? Is it bloat from the recent m/c even though it was early? And when will it go away?

    Since losing my pregnancy (and even during the first 4 weeks), I have been watching what I eat carefully and am just about to start going back to the gym (I don't go during TWW and early days, thus it has been a while) - but nothing seems to be changing...I am not the most patient person which is not a good thing when it comes to the whole TTC thing - but that's another story.

    What have others experienced?


  2. #2

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    I completely understand hun

    Over the 7yrs we've been TTC/undergoing IVF cycles & surgeries, etc... I'm EXACTLY the same

    I tend to put on a few kgs with each cycle.... its REALLY hard to drop - and really hard to get your head around after a failed cycle

    After having my surgery before Christmas (where I had my tubes removed) - I put on 4kgs... I've been dieting & just lost the last half kg to get rid of it, but am still carrying that 'tyre' around the middle

    Because of the damage inside my uterus with scar tissue etc, I'm extremely limited as to what exercise I can do... and its just horrid, so I can completely relate hun xxxx

    At least once a week EVERY week since I've had the surgery, I have run into people and they've either congratulated me on falling pregnant or have asked if I'm pregnant... EVERY week without fail...

    Even today after dropping the 4kgs I saw a lady DH sold a house for about 18months ago... and she asked me if I'm joined up at a gym... when I said no, she said 'Perhaps it may be something to think about just to drop those few extra kgs off the tummy region'.....

    Some people just have NFI

    I know not all women undergoing AC have weight issues with it... but I definately know a lot that do... so you're not alone hun

    Lots of love to you - and hoping you get that BFP asap so you don't have to worry about the size of your tummy anymore
    Last edited by Hollybolly; April 18th, 2009 at 09:33 PM. Reason: signature.. duh!

  3. #3

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    She asked you WHAT!!! Did you tell her she was a rude cow!

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    it can be so tough especially in the tww or after surgery when you can't do any exercise. Our first ivf cycle i felt so rubbish that i didn't do much and put a little weight on. but with the second cycle i just decided i would pick up my running (was doing regular 8-10ks per session before ivf) again... no excuses, no "too tireds'', i would just do it.

    i lost weight, toned up and felt much mch better. we also go better quality eggs and got our longed for bfp with one of those. i really believe being so active gave us the edge this time. plus i found i handled it mentally much better and it was a good time to think on my runs.

    but like i said the toughest part personally is the tww and post surgery when you just can't do anything.

    i've since traded my runs for brisk 45-60mins walks in the morning.

    we haven't been trying ac as long nor suffered any m/c though bluej so you'll need to take that into account when looking at us.

    hope that helps you out. it's an interesting topic.

  5. #5

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    Thanks for the replies.

    HollyBolly - I don't even know what to say because I am appalled that people just come out and ask if you are pregnant - I would think that people know better than to do this... and what that woman said about joining a gym - how rude. It does worry me that this extra middle meat is here to stay - I do hope that one day it won't matter

    Grub17 - I know what you mean about being tired after surgery and during the TWW. For me, that's only part of what holds me back from exercising - the other part is the fear that the exercise will somehow reduce the odds of the embryo sticking. I KNOW that this is very unlikely and that there is no scientific proof of a moderate amount of exercise impacting sticky-ness....but I just can't get it out of my head (I worried after this embryo transfer because I thought that the embryo fell out when I stood up - despite being assured that this is not possible). I do think you are right that it actually does you good - both mind & body. I did walk on a treadmill on an incline during the TWW but I was too scared to do anything else...and then just about the time I got my BFP I was so tired (and still scared) that I just wrote the gym off for the time being. I did make myself go today even though I'm still not feeling 100% physically and it did feel really good to be doing something.

  6. #6

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    BullieJ ; I could have written this thread myself. I completly relate to what your going though, word for word.

    I actually, had a lady ask me today if I am pregnant, and like Holly, have someone ask me often, am I expecting, which of course, is the worst thing someone could ask. I cant get the bloating to go away, and I dont feel my body is up for rigourous exercise that I would need to remove it. When the timing is right, I will concentrate on the extra, say 7 kilo's, I have put on through this journey.


    I was actually thinking of posting a thread, for a cleansing fast type thingy, to see if I needed to flush excess hormones and fluid from my body, to see if that helps. However, I think eating correctly, and walking is the best for me now.
    Last edited by Bengal; April 20th, 2009 at 08:19 AM.

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    I really can't believe people aren't smart enough to know not to ask whether someone is pregnant.

    I find the excess middle weight upsetting because it is a reminder of all the attempts with no result - and it also sometimes gets me down when I get dressed and want to wear something only to realize I can't, because I can't close it!

    I've tried a detox thing once before - I only made it 3 days (it was the lemon, maple syrup thing, cayenne pepper - no food at all). I don't think I'd try that again - but something that would get your hormones back to something more normal sounds intriguing.

  8. #8

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    I think I was reasonably lucky in that the only weight I tended to put on while cycling was due to OHSS... so that I actually came out of my first stim cycle weighing less than I did when I went into it - if you want to count the three weeks of OHSS recovery as well! Because of my PCOS and tendency to hyperstimulate my FS kept me on a fairly rigid diet, which was no fun, but did work to get the weight off and keep it down.

    But... it was my other health problems that assisted conception really stuffed up. I spent three years of managing my arthritis inadequately. I had some major emotional meltdowns and on a couple of occasions was completely unable to work (or function, really) because my anxiety was just so bad. My arthritis has got so bad that now (and I'm very relieved that it's after the birth of my son, not when I had to give assisted conception up completely) I'm taking chemo drugs to try to calm it down. And such high doses of prednisone that all the weight gain that others have while cycling is coming back to catch up with me now.

    I wish it had been possible to manage the arthritis adequately and undergo AC, but it's just not possible - fortunately I don't have the type of arthritis that results in permanent joint damage so I can recover, but if it had been the other type, I seriously do not know where I'd be right now.

    BW

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    ButterflyWarrior - sounds like you have been through quite a lot...and from reading you post it sounds like AC worked for you which is fabulous. I hope that you get your arthritis pain under control soon and that you don't have to stay on such heavy duty drugs permanently. As for the emotional meltdown and anxiety - I think that is part of this whole process (at least for me too) - it's very tough.

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    buliej- I am glad you have some answers/understanding here, and I also want to add, try not to be too hard on yourself about it. I too am not patient which is a hard way to be in this process. I have also found that due to being pregnant on and off and surgery and IVf etc that my weight has fluctuated and each time I have to try hard to get back to where I am happy. I find the lack of control over my body can be hard. I hope you have success soon, and a big obvious pregnant belly
    Last edited by Possums; April 20th, 2009 at 08:03 AM.

  11. #11

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    Buliej, this is a great topic. I am glad you raised it.
    Before IVF I was a fit and active outdoorsy type. The depressive cycle of failed cycles and physical and hormonal imbalances has eaten into this lifestyle more than I would like . It has affected my weight and fitness however, I refuse to force myself into a fitness regime that would add further stress during an IVF cycle. I believe I have to find my own balance and be able to live with the ups and downs and not berate myself as to the changes in my own body.
    I still ride to/from work which keeps up a sense of normality and I really enjoy it, but sadly bushwalking, surfing and biking has taken a big back seat in my life. The bright side is DH loves my new found soft bits and if he had his way he would like them to stay!

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    Dusty- your response touches on another aspect of the whole body/fitness issue... there is always that balancing act I am trying to find...between maintaining the level of fitness and body shape I am used to (also outdoorsy, fit, active) and not pushing myself too hard or doing anything that will compromise my efforts to fall pregnant, and keep a pregnancy going. Sometimes that causes frustration because I am such a control freak, other times I learn to go with it...surrendering my grip on control in all areas is one of the biggest lessons I am facing. I am sure it's the same for many of us.

  13. #13

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    This is a good thread - thanks for posting it buliej
    I found that while I did not put in much weight during our cycles, that my body shape changed and I lost muscle and gained fat. I have struggled with body issues for a long while (and still do to some extent) and found the change in shape to be depressing - and an extra issue to cope with on top of BFN's. I get into the cycle of self hating/blame, depression, not exercising or eating properly, negative effects on body etc etc - and still am!

    I'm not sure what the answer is other than we have to accept what happens to some extent and try and do what we can - when we can to be good to ourselves with food and exercise - but be kind as well. On that note- clearly there is a need for others to be kind as well - I cant belive some of the comments people have had - how rude!
    FG

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    Thanks everyone for sharing your experience.

    FG - that's a good way of explaining it - my body (tummy area) has definitely changed - I wouldn't be surprised if it is all the hormones but no one ever mentioned this - I think there's so much that the drs or the clinic nurses could tell us that they just don't - without bellybelly, I'd be very lost

    and you & Dusty are exactly right, it is depressing and feels like just another issue to deal with on top of all the others. The balance of being smart about it and kind to yourself is a hard one, but I agree that is key.

    Dusty - it made me smile when you said your husband likes the new softer bits. DHs don't always know what to say, but sometimes they say the perfect things.

    Possums - I hope we all have big pregnant bellies that we can show off!

  15. #15

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    Julie, I can't believe I only saw this thread...this weight gain thing has been bugging my happiness for a while, but I always trying to keep it to myself that in the grand scheme of things, its nothing. But after many cycles of dissapointment, I have found more resentment in this TTC journey and losing my figure is definately one of them ...

    Not to my liking, my weight gain adding no size up to my boobs only the 'middle part', I have very much changed my dressing style in the last few years...Ebay becomes my other best friend so I can sell up all my Size 6 clothes, no more short t-shirt and tight jeans, smock or tunic dress is my favourate now because they are loose and cover my middif...I was sure the other day when I accidentally wore the wrong type of clothes, my female boss was checking my tummy trying to work out if Im pregnant...

    I do find after a stim cycle, the bloating tend to be most severe and then after a few weeks break, it graduately eased off a bit, I don't look like 3-month pregnant. Nevertheless, I've gained at least 6kg through all the drugs...Not being an active person in the first place, I have been trying to do some running, swimming and yoga, but with the interruption of the cycle planning (as you mention worrying exercise when taking drugs then TWW etc etc), all becomes too hard. I do find yoga or pilates are really beneficial with my calmness and flexibility of the body, but not so much on losing weight.

  16. #16

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    I have put on ALOT of weight over the last 3 years. Like about 25kg!!!!!! I have had 3 ectopic pgs, 2 ruptures and after that I started my IVF journey. I have been sick and tired and recovering from surgery.

    It is very depressing but there is not much I can do about it right now so I refuse to "worry" like I used to before I started on AC.

    If this FET cycle that I am in now is a BFN, I will have a break and concentrate on getting my size back down to a 10.

    *deep sigh*

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    Wow, more replies - I like knowing that I am not alone (selfish sorry), but really wish that this was not something that any of us had to deal with. My DH is very conscious of weight (both his and mine), and I am thankful that he has been very sweet about my weight gain (as he should be).

    My secret wish (not so secret now that I am posting it), is that once I have a baby, I will be able to breast feed and it all will come off! There's a lot of wishes underlying that statement...

  18. #18

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    It obviously is an issue for many women...and I think as women we are often pretty caught up in body image/weight etc anyway, so it can be hard.

    FG- like you I have long strongled with body/control issues...mainly being tooooo caught up in my weight/size/fitness etc. So for me, having to ease back a bit has been a challenge and I know that pregnancy (hurry up! ) and changes to my body, while I absolutely can't wait for them, will also have some challenging aspects for me.

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