I decided to start this blog to make others aware of the condition I have and share with many others. It was only a couple of months ago that I had never heard the words "Ulcerative Colitis" let alone knew what it actually is!! Well now I know a lot more. I won't go into great detail but rather offer you a link to help you better understand.I find a lot of people who suffer from it are uncomfortable to talk about the illness. Yes it's not pretty, but it's what i suffer from and now it's time to deal with it. To say the least it turned my life upside down in a hurry. I was perfectly fit and healthy and in the best shape of my life training for my first Ironman (Ironman Louisville) when it all went wrong.
The pains and symptoms finally got the better of me and I found myself in hospital trying to figure out what the problem was. After a day of tests the answers were clear and the doctor gave me the diagnosis. I was given a steroid to take that would put the colitis into remission and then I would be put on medication to control the illness. I had been given the bad news that Ironman Louisville should be forgotten about this year as the steroid I was taking was very harsh with extreme side effects. My doctor had told me to cut back on my training and be patient whilst things recover. I listened to both the Doctor and my body and only trained if I felt good.
But again things took a turn one day after a training run. After my run I was feeling a little off and was feeling cold and feverish. I came home and put on a jumper and track pants even though it was still 30c at 9:00pm. Well the next day I found myself in hospital fighting for my life with an extremely low blood pressure. The doctors had said to me if it wasn't for my fitness and age I would know longer be here. They also said I was a medical mystery as they could not work out the source of the problem. In the end they feel it's the steroid that caused the problem. Our body produces it's own steroid when we exert ourselves. The steroid I was taking inhibits your body from producing it's own natural steroid. So when i went for a run it put my body under extreme stress and my bodies response was to shut down. It was an eye opening experience for all of us and I feel blessed and very happy to still be here.
So what happens now???
I'm on medication for my illness and i'm back training and setting new goals. I've entered into a number of X Country running races this fall to recharge the competitive juices and I am entered into Ironman Canada August 29th, 2012 in Penticton, BC. My goal is to win my age group or place high enough to qualify for the Hawaiian Ironman World Champs 2012. This year i will be taking a different approach to my training working with Steve from www.dutriandrun.ca to improve my running and Marathon times significantly and also the guidance of a swim coach. I feel these two disciplines need the most fine tuning if i'm to achieve my goals.