Fitness, always a pleasure!

It’s been over a week since my last blog, I never intended to go more than a week without posting but it’s been one VERY busy week! I am not complaining, it’s been ‘good’ busy but I have realised that maybe I should cut down on my Criminal Minds box set marathon and I may find more time! Still, we should all be able to enjoy guilt free TV marathons from time to time and be able to include these as part of our busy lifestyles. (I count mine as a hobby, that way at least I can say I have hobbies if i ever get asked).

So, I have mentioned that I am trying to discover fitness and am also training for the Bupa 10k run for my Charity (Beating Bowel Cancer) which is in 2 months (eek!). I say ‘discover’ fitness and I suppose what I mean by that is discover it for me. Due to my Ulcerative Colitis, exercise was never a priority nor something that my body could really cope with. At the time, I used to feel guilty for not exercising, but I can look back now and wonder why I gave myself such a hard time when my body was trying to cope with such major trauma. If it hasn’t been illness it’s been operation recovery (there were two major ops in 18 months, one of which was emergency) which has held me back. Just under a year ago I was able to start exercising again and with no looming operations & no illness I knew there was nothing stopping me. I won’t tell you all about my year of exercise, well not in one post anyway, (unless you wish to drop off to sleep quickly?) but in a nutshell, I joined a gym and also take classes. I desperately want to increase my core strength, as obviously, two major abdominal operations will weaken the area. Due to my stoma, I will always have a hole in my tummy which means that the area will always be weaker. Therefore, I am more prone to hernias, I definitely don’t want one of those so I wear a support belt, I don’t like wearing it but it is better than the possible alternative. But I can do all types of exercise, including core ones such as sit ups and planks, us ostomists can do everything non-ostomists can do, we just have to be a bit more aware and slightly more careful.

The last two Monday’s I have taken part in a Legs, Bums & tums class, I am hoping the leg part will help with my running training too. It is run by Fitness with Naomi, and it is a pretty friendly class, everyone seems nice and we have a bit of a giggle at our sometimes lack of co-ordination! During warm ups I feel like I am keeping up quite well yet somehow I feel like an excited 5 year old jumping about the dance floor at a family party – I just don’t feel elegant at all! Still, who cares what I look like – at least I’m doing it, albeit a bit ungainly. So the exercise and the running training continues on and I shall update you on my progress along the way (if you feel like donating you can here; http://www.justgiving.com/Sherrill-Hawker).

I haven’t just been watching Criminal Minds and being all ungainly in my fitness classes I have truly been busy. There was an overnight trip to Birmingham for work, I do love an overnight stay and a train journey. It may seem odd, but I quite like the ritual of it all and having a night to myself, and not having to suffer yet another football match is always a pleasure. I am an organised traveller, in fact I am the sort of person that means other people get to travel light as they know I will have all the necessities and more on my person – one never knows when a lime green highlighter and a currant bun will come in handy. The first time I stayed overnight anywhere after my op was 6 months after. In my previous job I had to go to Manchester for work, it was two nights stay and was probably the most nerve racking thing I had done in ages. But I packed enough spare stoma bags & supplies to last me a week and all was OK. Travelling with a stoma gets easier the more you do it, it’s just a case of increasing your confidence until it is totally natural again.

There has also been a work related presentation to a group of Stoma Nurses, a trip round Medway Hospital to meet some Colorectal Nurses and the obligatory weekend festivities, the continuing fitness classes & runs, oh and not forgetting a bit of time for some Criminal Minds along the way!

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