Monday, September 19, 2016

On the Right Track {InsideTracker Intro}

I don't have a doctor.

This admission is a somewhat new revelation, one that I was somewhat surprised to make. For years, I have been reporting Dr. H as my primary care doc. I put her name on file with my OB, with the hospitals where I delivered the boys, at the pharmacy when filling prescriptions.

But when I called to make an appointment for a check-up, I was told that since it had been more than three years since my last appointment, I was no longer considered a patient and Dr. H was not accepting new patients. I could write her a note asking to consider seeing me or find someone new.

Well then ... I guess it doesn't pay to be healthy.

The news was as disappointing as it was confusing. For some time, I had wanted to check in with a doctor. I had wanted to see what my health – and blood – looked like after going through Whole30 and adopting a grain-free diet. And, let's be frank: I turned 35 this year; I'm not exactly young anymore, at least by some standards.

But the answer to my questions wasn't going to be just a call away anymore. I now had to research family doctors, see if they were accepting new paitients and then if my insurance covered my to ppick.

It seemed like such a hassle, and I was ready to put the idea to bed when I got the note. The note giving me the opportunity to try InsideTracker.

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What is InsideTracker?

InsideTracker offers a personalized series of blood tests to establish a baseline, to compare your results to benchmarks, and to track your progress for key scientifically proven biomarkers for health, wellness and athletic performance. After receiving the results, InsideTracker offers personalized, actionable recommendations (nutrition, exercise, supplements, lifestyle) to improve areas that were marked after the results. Personalized dashboards and online tracking tools

How does it work?

After signing up for an account, athletes can select one of six plans. InsideTracker works with blood centers around the country (in my area, it is Quest), and participants can schedule an appointment online. After having blood drawn (a fast is required), one will receive an email with results. You log in, fill out a questionnaire and the receive recommendations for ways to improve areas that are not optimized or are at risk.

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Before you get your results, you fill out a short survey – questions about your lifestyle and diet preferences, methods of improving what’s “at risk” or “not optimized” (either exercise, diet, etc) and selecting your goals (reduce stress, sleep better, build endurance, boost energy) – “at risk” biomarkers first, then “not optimized” then “optimized”.

But why?

To put it simply, and somewhat arrogantly, most physicians don't know how to deal with very active people. I am not an elite athlete, I don't run 100 miles a week, I am not winning races. However, my activity level and needs are far different than the average patient.

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I learned this the hard way when I was seeing a physcial therapist for piriformis syndrome when I was pregnant. She wanted to help me get to a point where I could vacuum safely; I wanted to run. She wanted to show me how to squat to pick up something off the floor. I wanted to heal enough so that I could squat with a weighted bar on my back. Not having a physician, I now had the opportunity to find someone who would treat me – not just as a patient but as someone with certain needs. And that's what InsideTracker does. It would look at the results for ME, not the mom next door who enjoys a leisurely walk with friend a couple times a week.

Up next

I'll share my experience getting an InsideTracker test, my surprising results and what it all means for me.

Disclosure: I was offered the opportunity to try InsideTracker thanks to a partnership with Team Nuun. I will receive two Ultimate tests in exchange for posting about my experiences but I'm not being compensated in any way. All opinions are my own.

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