Tag Archives: exercise

My favorites are running, swimming and cycling… also known as triathloning.

Will run for ostomy awareness

In just a few short weeks, World Ostomy Day 2016 will be here. And yes, it’s a day for raising awareness, but I think I have found a better way to celebrate the day… And that’s by doing things that I wouldn’t have been able to do prior to getting an ostomy. For me, that has been running.

will run for ostomy awareness 5k resilience

For the past 2 years, I have taken part in the WannaWearOne Ostomy 5K. The first year I did it from out of town as a part of the virtual race and last year I was able to compete in a local race in Durham, NC. (But that isn’t the only local race! Keep reading for more info!) ostomy run race resilience wannawearone This year, the race is taking on a different name: Run for Resilience Ostomy 5K. And I think that’s a very fitting title, because it’s about showing that having an ostomy does not have to stop you from doing whatever you want to do.

Last year’s race was not an easy one for me. I was about 3 months postpartum and I hadn’t been running in a very long time. But it was important to me to take part in this race and to do what I could to show myself and others that having an ostomy was not going to hold me back. I figured I was probably the last person in the race, but amazingly I was not, and I actually ended up winning 3rd place among ostomates in the race! (Check out my LIVE IN ACTION video below!)

So I encourage you this World Ostomy Day to get involved. The Run for Resilience is a great opportunity to do so. (And here’s a Where’s Waldo? opportunity for you: Can you spot me on the Registration page??) The run features races in 5 physical locations–in both the US & the UK–and a virtual race available for everybody to take part. Basically, the virtual race allows you to run wherever you are, while still being a part of the event and the awareness raised. Just be sure to post pictures using #IAmResilient! The races take place on different days during October, so check out the website for what’s happening near you.

Even if running isn’t your thing, find a way to do something. Think about things you couldn’t have done before your surgery. Maybe it is eating a certain food or sitting through a whole movie or going hiking. Find whatever it is and do it! Show yourself and the world that you are resilient and an ostomy is not going to hold you back!

ostomy run race resilience wannawearone

 

Run for ostomies, raise awareness at WannaWearOne Ostomy 5K

We are less than a month away from World Ostomy Day and with that comes the 2nd Annual WannaWearOne Ostomy AWEARness 5K! And the original race started right here in my backyard in Durham, NC, but this year there are 2 more events in Kingsport, TN, and Portland, OR.

wwo2015

This is truly a one-of-a-kind event that is meant to raise awareness for ostomies. It started as a joint event between two of the hospitals in the area where people tried wearing an ostomy bag to learn a little more about what it is like to have one. It has since morphed into a race that raises money that goes towards the UOAA and ostomy awareness and support.

Keeping with that theme, one of the unique parts of this race is that all race gear bags come with an ostomy bag. Those without ostomies are encouraged to wear the bag during the race and even have the option of filling the bag with items like applesauce and pudding to give participants a small glimpse into what it feels like to wear an ostomy bag.

wannawearone ostomy awearness 5k run race ileostomy colostomy urostomy stolen colon ibd World Ostomy Day and the race take place on Saturday, October 3. If you are in one of these areas or able to make the trip, you should definitely check it out! But even if you aren’t close or able to travel, you can still be a part of the event by doing the virtual race. I actually did this last year since I happened to be traveling on World Ostomy Day. You simply run on your own, but can still raise awareness, fundraise and support the cause.

Here is all the information you need to register. Whether you are able to attend or do the virtual race, you can still be a part of the event. Even if you are unable to run, please consider donating towards the goal of spreading awareness and providing help for those living with an ostomy.

I will be out at the Durham event this year and little Waylon will be supporting the cause, too! We’d love to get to see you. If you have any questions, you can reach out to the coordinators through the website, or feel free to email me and I’ll help however I can. Or you can email me to simply let me know if you’re coming! I hope I get the chance to meet some of you.

2015 WannaWearOne Ostomy AWEARness 5K

Out of the Bag: Body & weight changes

stephanie hughes out of the bag colostomy ileostomy crohn's disease ulcerative colitis inflammatory bowel disease ibd ostomy blog stolen colon ileostomy colostomy urostomyWhen you have surgery to remove your colon and to get an ostomy, your body sometimes reacts in unexpected ways. I can’t explain why it does what it does, but when you majorly alter your body’s normal functions, then it is going to impact other things, as well. I’m sure it reacts in different ways for different people, but there’s a good chance your body will undergo some big changes, one way or another. This was something I wasn’t quite ready for prior to my surgery.

I have debated talking about this because it does not always seem acceptable for a thin person to talk about weight issues. You usually get dismissed as either being ridiculous for worrying about your weight or as bragging about how skinny you are. That’s not my intention here. I think this is an important topic and something that changed for me over the past few years that I did not necessarily expect when I first decided to have this surgery.

Simply put, I’m just kind of a small person. I was before my surgery and I still am afterwards. I am only 5’2″ (and 3/4″!) and for most of my adult life, I have weighed between 100-110 lbs. Of course there are a few outliers in there and to be even more specific, my range was really between 103-108 lbs and would fluctuate between those fairly often. That was my sweet spot. And I knew that if I got below 103 lbs that I was losing too much weight and needed to put a little more on, and if I got over 108 lbs I would start noticing it (in my face mostly) and would do what I needed to drop a pound or two. Even once I got up to 109 or 110, without weighing myself, I would know that I was a little higher than I liked to be.

But after my surgery, things started to change pretty quickly. Within just a few months, I started to notice my weight going up. The funny thing, though, is that I didn’t feel like I was gaining weight. I didn’t notice it when I looked in the mirror or think that I should lose a few pounds. (Although, I do have a couple of pairs of skinny jeans from prior to surgery that I still am unable to get on.) I finally settled in around 111-115 lbs. And that’s where I’ve remained for the past couple of years.

body weight change ostomy surgery colectomy colon stephanie hughes stolen colon inflammatory bowel disease ibd crohn's disease ulcerative colitis ileostomy colostomy urostomy blog Continue reading

Reflections and resolutions

New year 2015 celebration resolutions goals The Stolen Colon ostomy ileostomy urostomy colostomy Crohn's disease ulcerative colitis inflammatory bowel disease ibd colon stephanie hughes blog

This is the time of year where we always look back at the preceding 365 days to think about all that we accomplished (or perhaps didn’t) and look ahead at all of the potential there is for the next 365 days. I probably say this every year, but I love New Year’s! I love any opportunity that I am given to start over, refresh, reinvent myself. I am a big believer in new beginnings and second chances.

I also tend to be fairly quiet around this time of year, as I come off the high of holiday craziness and spend some time thinking about what this past year held, the accomplishments and the disappointments, and about where I want to go next.

I took a look back at my goals for this past year that I set out on January 1, 2014. My 5 main goals included: Implement changes for The Stolen Colon, Get organized/save money/stay on budget, Stay focused on another semester of grad school, Run my third half-marathon, and Plan an amazing vacation. I am very pleased to say that I accomplished every one of these goals in the past year. Maybe not as fully as I would have liked at times, but I’m glad to be able to read through this and know that I did follow through on some things. What I’m disappointed about is that I really didn’t stay focused on these things. Some of them were things that just naturally happened, but I really wish that I had continued to remind myself of these goals and not just hoped that they would happen at one point or another.
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