I wasn’t going to have a run just yet but after a very comfortable brisk 5K walk this morning and reassurance from a nurse that the little niggle I was experiencing was related to the suture (most probably an internal stitch or two), I decided to hop on the dreadmill. I just had to scratch that itch! 

It was 6 weeks and 6 days since surgery and in the past two weeks I’ve been going swimming and also been having brisk walks of between 3 and 6 miles. The last time I ran was in May, 2018 so it was going to the first time in 10 months that my legs were given a proper workout. 

Warming Up

After donning the support belt I hopped on the treadmill and started with a brisk walk to get warmed up. By now I’d already completed a number of walks so it felt good. Increasing the speed I broke into a light jog for a minute. Internally everything felt fine although the legs not being used to running were feeling heavy. I slowed back down to a brisk walk, repeated another light jog then decided it would be ok to try a faster run, perhaps a mile. 

I pushed up the speed on the treadmill so the I was running at around 10:00 /mi pace. It was a shock to the system running again. I was keeping a close eye on how the abdomen was feeling and everything appeared to be fine. Like during the light jogging my legs were feeling heavy but that sensation would soon go. My breathing wasn’t too bad but I was puffing and panting. 

The only niggle was my coccyx which I’ve been experiencing some discomfort in that area due to having to shift my weight when sitting because of the healing Ken Butt. 

I finished on that runner’s high!

I kept up the pace and was loving being able to run again and even though it was a little tough due to the dip in fitness level, it just felt so good. I finished with that runner’s high!

The Colostomy Bag

What colostomy bag? I was so focused on running that I didn’t even think about the bag. This is great as my stoma nurse keeps reminding me that I should never be thinking about the bag. The support belt helps keep it in place but even without the bag you wouldn’t know it was there. 

The Runner’s Trots

Something that I didn’t think of at the time and have only thought about whilst writing this blog post is that after a mile of running plus some light jogging I didn’t notice any bowel movements. In the past I would run a mile or 2 and would then be plagued with the runner’s trots and would have the urge to go to the toilet. 

Prior to the surgery I was curious to know what would happen to the runner’s trots. Even though I wouldn’t be going to the toilet in the conventional way, would I still suffer from the trots and would the bag fill up when running? It’s still too early to tell and wouldn’t need to run more and further but it was good that there was no movement during this trial run.

What’s Next

I definitely need to work on the cardio and rebuilding fitness levels which I will do through swimming and machines such as the elliptical at the gym. I think I’ll try some more running but will be taking it easy, particularly with the Ken Butt still healing.

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Diagnosed with IBD in 2002, I have experienced the usual ups and downs of having a chronic disease and tried numerous medications but the time finally came in 2018 to elect to have surgery to improve my life. I had the surgery in 2019 and this is my journey having a 'New Bum'.

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