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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 12-29-08, 07:11 AM   #1
gapwedge
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Serious question: Do any Clydes suffer from sleep apnea?

Between 2007 and November of this year I gained 30 pounds. Eating became my friend as I was dealing with some personal issues. During that time I have developed sleep apnea per my wife's observation. I know weight loss will help solve this issue, but in the mean time do I take this seriously and get on one of those machines? I have read about the possible results of ignoring it. Just wondering if any of you clydes have dealt with it or are dealing with it. It seems to affect my energy level during the day which is affecting my cycling. I began cycling again in early November and have begun to lose weight again, but not enough to cause the apnea to go away. Just curious.
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Old 12-29-08, 07:16 AM   #2
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I don't know if I suffer from Sleep Apnea or not. I do know I snore like a freight train and wake up several times during sleep. Combine this with working deep nights and trying to get quality sleep during the day light hours leaves me feeling tired most of the time.

Any time I have time off my sleep schedule is all kinds of whacked out. Any time after about noon time and my body feels like it wants to go to bed. I also struggle with falling asleep really early in the evening and waking up in around 3:00 AM when I'm taking time off work.
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Old 12-29-08, 07:19 AM   #3
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Check wiht your doctor. I they diagnose it and prescribe one of those machines your insurance should help cover the cost for a rental machine. After you've lost enough weight and improved enough so that the apnea is not a problem then you simply get your doctor to agree and you stop using it.

Yes, it is serious, you could die. And as you say, it is affecting your energy level and your efforts to lose weight. That alone makes it very serious.... In addition to the death thing.
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Old 12-29-08, 07:26 AM   #4
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^^ Yeah, the "death thing" caught my attention.
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Old 12-29-08, 07:43 AM   #5
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when my doctor told me i probably had it several years ago, he told me, don't worry you can't die from it or anything! all i know is that i weighed about 270 then and i weigh about 215 now. i sleep a lot better. i have heard that those machines work wonders if you can get used to sleeping with one.

good luck, mike
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Old 12-29-08, 08:21 AM   #6
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when my doctor told me i probably had it several years ago, he told me, don't worry you can't die from it or anything! all i know is that i weighed about 270 then and i weigh about 215 now. i sleep a lot better. i have heard that those machines work wonders if you can get used to sleeping with one.

good luck, mike

Thanks Mike. I think I am going to see how my weight loss goes this coming season. If I still have the same weight (250) this fall as I do now I will go get checked. I don't remember having that problem when my weight was closer to 200.
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Old 12-29-08, 08:26 AM   #7
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I have massively sever apnea and my doctor was shocked I was still alive. He told me that 60% of the people have some form of apnea, some worse than others and it's not just a weight thing. Mine is actually genetic based on how my throat and tongue are built. And yes, you can die, but not from the apnea, but from the heart attack you have from when you quit breathing for 45 seconds out of every mins. Brings on a lot of stress on the body.

If you are having issues you need to have it checked out. I waited for 10+ years cause I was stupid and now realize the best thing I ever did was get a sleep test. I have been using the CPAP for almost 3 years now and it was one of the best thing I ever did.
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Old 12-29-08, 08:47 AM   #8
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I have sleep apnea and have been using the CPAP for about 12 years.

I love it.

I was diagnosed at a sleep clinic, which is actually the worst part. You have to spend a night being observed while you "sleep". You are hooked up to various wires and watched all night.
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Old 12-29-08, 08:58 AM   #9
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Apnea is serious! I think that now you don't have to go to a sleep clinic anymore. They give you a "diagnostic" machine that monitors your sleep at home and then you return it for the diagnosis. If you need a CPAP or a BiPAP machine you will not only save your life but will sleep like a baby!

I know I have been on a BiPAP machine and it saved my life!
Go get evaluated.
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Old 12-29-08, 10:35 AM   #10
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I'm not a Clydesdale: I weigh just 135lb, but I do have obstructive sleep apnea (my airway collapses at the end of exhalation during sleep). I had to quit cycling for several years until my problem was diagnosed and treated. Major health hazards result from the chronic stress imposed upon your body caused by lack of oxygen to vital organs (especially the heart). Right now, you may not be feeling anything, but those degenerative effects are accumulating, nevertheless. Weight loss may reduce some of the stress and risks involved, but will not eliminate the underlying problem. Sleep apnea has no cure; it doesn't go away. There are, however, a number of effective treatments, including surgery, dental inserts for use at night, and the CPAP (which is what I use). Despite the mask discomfort, I now swear by it; using it has changed my life. Don't ignore this condition, or try to treat it on your own; consult your health care provider.

Here are a few informative sites:
http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/sleepapnea.html
http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/dci/...ea_WhatIs.html
http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/s...leep_apnea.htm
http://www.sleepapnea.org/info/index.html

Matt RN
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Old 12-29-08, 01:27 PM   #11
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I used to. I also used to snore. Mine was caused by the weight, though I expect there is a genetic tendency as my dad has a CPAP machine of some sort.

When I lost weight, it went away.
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Old 12-29-08, 01:33 PM   #12
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I'm another with Apnea. I've got the whole schmear with apnea and restless leg both. I take a pill for the restless leg and have a machine for the apnea. The machine works pretty well most of the time, and I have no complaints. I will note that my machine is a Bi-Pap (Bi-Level Continuous Positive Air Pressure), as opposed to just a Cpap. The difference is that a Bi-Pap uses one pressure (higher) for inhalation and another for exhalation.

I was also diagnosed by a clinic that specializes in sleep disorders. They had me come in for an overnight stay to begin. They hooked me up to a bunch of monitors and told me to go to sleep. Once they had a baseline, they tried a couple of different machines and levels on me. After my doctor got the results, she wrote out a prescription for a machine, which was covered 100% by my insurance. I now go back to her once every 6 months or so.

Sleep apnea can be a real problem. More importantly to me on a daily basis, though, is the fact that I get a better nights sleep, meaning that I only fall asleep when my wife or boss is trying to have a "meaningful conversation"
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Old 12-29-08, 01:40 PM   #13
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There is a side benefit to using a cpap, at least for me there is. I have had mine about 4 yrs and I dream like crazy. Every night is like going to the movies! I guess it's the result of spending more time in rem sleep. I hardly ever got there before. During my sleep study I had hundreds of apnea episodes in 7 hrs.
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Old 12-29-08, 01:58 PM   #14
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I use a BiPAP as well. Best thing I ever did.
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Old 12-29-08, 02:12 PM   #15
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I have severe sleep apnea and COPD, diagnosed last year. The doctor told me that I was about as serious as you can get, I had 30 apneas within the first hour of my sleep study! I also work 3rd shift so I've had a hard time adjusting because my sleep patterns are so erratic.

I would definately get it checked out because it can kill you or at the very least make your life miserable. A good nights sleep is an amazing thing.
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Old 12-29-08, 02:13 PM   #16
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Wow. Great feedback and I thank you for taking the time to respond. My dad had it, but never did anything about it. He did die of a heart attack, but not sure it was related since he smoked. We have a sleep center here in town. I am going to make an appointment this week.
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Old 12-29-08, 02:28 PM   #17
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My wife told me repeatedly that when I was around 300 lbs. I would stop breathing for long periods of time followed by a massive snore.

Now at just under 190 she says I don't do it anymore but that I do snore if I've been drinking. No more stopping of the breathing.

Mine seemed to have been weight related. I used to feel awful all day every day and never felt refreshed waking up. Now I sleep like a rock for 6 hours or so, and here the past couple weeks for 8 hours for some reason and feel like a champ when I wake up.

John
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Old 12-29-08, 02:32 PM   #18
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My wife told me repeatedly that when I was around 300 lbs. I would stop breathing for long periods of time followed by a massive snore.

Now at just under 190 she says I don't do it anymore but that I do snore if I've been drinking. No more stopping of the breathing.

Mine seemed to have been weight related. I used to feel awful all day every day and never felt refreshed waking up. Now I sleep like a rock for 6 hours or so, and here the past couple weeks for 8 hours for some reason and feel like a champ when I wake up.

John
I did not have it when I weighed 200 or less, so I am hoping mine diagonsis will be just that. I hope it is temporary, because I really want to lose the weight.
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Old 12-29-08, 02:48 PM   #19
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you probably still have it, but it was not as exposed when you had less weight on you neck area. I think Bridgerider said it the best.
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Old 12-29-08, 03:25 PM   #20
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I work in a clinic and have friendly banter from time to time with staff in our sleep lab. Research indicates that a lot more people than you would ever realize are suffering from sleep apnea, and it isn't just people who are overweight. There are a lot of treatments for the condition, but the lead pulmonologist is a huge fan of the CPAP machines. His opinion is that other methods can sometimes work for people with minor symptoms, but the CPAP machine works on almost everyone.

It isn't a trivial undertaking though. I went through the lab testing (spend the night hooked up to over a dozen sensors while being recorded and filmed) and subsequent prescription a couple of years ago, and as a result I have a CPAP machine. It is different for different people, but I adjusted to it quite quickly. I didn't really think it was helping, but my wife loves it because I don't snore any longer.

After losing 75 pounds, I got re-tested and it was determined that I still needed it at the same setting as my original weight. I don't have more than 25 more pounds or so to lose and I will be at a pretty ideal weight. I will presumably still need the CPAP machine even though I will no longer be overweight.

The health benefits of proper sleep are huge, as you already have researched. You should discuss this with your doctor. At the very least that conversation should result in a sleep study being scheduled. After that, you will know for sure. You will probably be amazed how many times you are shaken out of REM sleep each night (your study results will show in amazing detail).
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Old 12-29-08, 03:49 PM   #21
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I use a machine; it helps; I can barely hear it, and my fiancee comments that she desn't know if it's on unless she checks. It wasn't hard to get used to.
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Old 12-29-08, 03:59 PM   #22
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Thanks for the encouraging words. I will keep you posted. I called today and am scheduled tomorrow to sit with a nurse to complete some forms/surveys. There is no doubt I have it. I even scare myself sometime when I wake up fighting just to breathe.
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Old 12-29-08, 07:55 PM   #23
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I was diagnosed with sleep apnea about 6 years ago. Went to the sleep clinic, the whole 9 yards. I sleep with the CPAP machine, and I wouldn't have it any other way. I didn't realize the poor quality of sleep I was getting until I started using the machine. Get yourself tested if you think you may need the machine. It's a great help if you do. Good Luck.
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Old 12-29-08, 10:19 PM   #24
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As with the saddle there's a we bit of adjustment

HI,
Most people love the CPAP after they get thru the adjustment period. My problem was made worse when I put the mask on to tight, it can and will bruise your face if its to tight.
I found that after some practice you need to learn how to pull the mask away from your face after attachment the air pressure to flair the seal this allow the mask to work better.
My cpap test was so bad the tech came in and put a mask on me, he said I was scaring him when I stopped breathing 29 times and hour.
No wonder I was so tired all the time and that question about falling asleep at a red light was very true for me..
Doug

I was drinking two pots of coffee a day to function.and my wife sleeps better now she loves that I don't snore anymore..
psps My work was shocked how much my personality improved being tired does make you snappy and grumpy.
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Old 12-30-08, 10:08 AM   #25
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I will add to all the raves for the CPAP. I was surprised how easy it was for me to adjust to having the mask on my face. It helps me get better sleep, helps with the "death thing," and has probably kept my marriage together as well (snoring). Sometimes, when I go out of town and forget to bring my machine, I notice how much less rested I feel the next day.
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