Thursday, March 25, 2010

Race day Saturday!!

This Saturday I will be running a 10k race. I know, I know...those of you reading this that do not live in United States might have a chuckle at me calling it that. Most Americans when they think of a race that is 10 kilometers, scratch their heads at first and say, "Now just how long is that in miles?" Before I ran it, I was one of those people. Until all of us Yanks get it together and start using the metric system, you will just have to bear with me here.

I ran it last year with my wife and a close friend of ours. I was very proud to have achieved such a feat. My wife and I trained for about three months to condition ourselves.

One concern I had a year ago is the same concern that I have for the race on Saturday. I'm not worried about twisted ankles, or not as worried, anyway. What tops the list of my race day nervousness? I hope I can make it through the whole race without shitting myself. For my fellow UC sufferers I bet you saw that one coming right?

From what I know, there will be over 30,000 participants on Saturday. I wonder if the people who organize this event factor in the amount of people who suffer from a "spastic" colon? From the way it looked last year it certainly did not seem to be the case. I guess maybe I should bring an extra pair of pants?

While these are all valid concerns, I think that things will be fine race day. Last year things were just fine and man....

it was the best feeling crossing that finish line!

I have been doing better the past few days than I have been in a long time. Just in case though....don't think I will be wearing shorts!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Glass half full?

I usually try to view things that happen with a positive attitude. While sometimes this is easier said than done, I think it is safe to say that I am fairly successful at doing this.

As someone who suffers from UC I have had many days of feeling depressed or down. I am blessed to have the support of a loving amazing wife. I also have some close friends and family who I know love and care for me deeply. As much as they care and may try to understand, they just can't.

At times it can be discouraging..... especially when I am throwing away another pair of boxers in the trashcan of some public bathroom. While I can look back and have a chuckle about it, nothing is more humiliating or emasculating. It's the little things in life that are taken for granted. I never would have thought that having the option of choosing when and where I crap, would be such a luxury.

I have come to realize that I have slacked off a bit with my diet and being pro-active about managing my UC. I have a bit of a sweet tooth. It often gets the better of me and my colon pays the price. I love ice cream. It is so hard to turn down.

These past couple of days I have resolved to try some new things in regards to healing my gut.
Here are some different things that I am supplementing my diet with:

- mushroom root tea
3x daily

calendula tea 3x daily

- Ginger root tea 3x daily

All of these I combine and make into one tea brew. So far doing this seems to be helping but I wonder if having a bowl of ice cream at night nullifies all of this.

All in all things are good. I am grateful that I am not worse off with my UC. I have good days and bad but today I did not have to throw any boxers away! That's glass is half full!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Spring Fever....literally

It has been about a week of beautiful weather in Richmond. While I love the spring time, my allergies have been horrible this week. Between my colitis and non-stop sneezing, I pretty much feel like a wreck.

For someone like myself who suffers from an auto-immune disease such as colitis, the two seem to be linked at times. What I mean is that if my allergies are acting up, more than likely my stomach will be acting up as well.

From what I know about how the GI system works, things like anxiety and stress can cause the digestive system to become aggravated. When a good part of my day is spent sneezing, I can't help but feel anxious or stressed because I want to feel better. I take allergy medicine which sometimes helps. One thing I wonder: how is the allergy medicine affecting my stomach? What do others with the same issues do?

Images by beamillion and OliBac

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Gotta love the zipper.....

There are few things in this world that compare to the complete panic and desperation of attempting to undo a pair of button fly jeans, as I had on the other day. Adding to the difficultly of the task was the fact that the pants I had on also had a drawstring. You have got to be kidding me!! Precious seconds ticked away as my need to "go" grew closer. 3....2.....1.....

Let's just say that on that fate filled day, I vowed that I would never again wear pants that had a button fly.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Pain in the rear

So after many rolls of toilet paper, doses of probiotics, doctor visits, samples of blood given and middle of the night bathroom trips, I can't help but wonder. What is normal for someone who suffers from UC?

In the nearly two years that I have had this condition I have yet to meet many people who have the same ailment. This can be very frustrating and discouraging given that I really need someone to talk to about this other than my wife. Bless her heart, she has been very supportive and understanding. Especially considering that we only have one bathroom. As great as she is and as much as she tries to understand, when it comes right down to it, she just can't relate.

I have not had a severe "flare up" for over a year and a half now. I do however, have good days and bad days. Thankfully I have been off prednisone for a little over a year. My maintinence drug that I am taking is Lialda. Quite honestly though, I wonder what good it is really doing. What does seem to be helping hold off a relapse is daily doses of probiotics, a calendula and chamomile tea blend, and eating yogurt. All of which I take several times a day. What seems to be working for others?