Life Lately – Remicade, Running, & Racing

It’s been about 6 months – so it’s perfect time for an update on all things running and life.


Life Lately – Remicade

Like almost all of us – I have been working from home since mid-March. My dining room has basically become the “work bunker”. To be honest, I have struggled a bit on the work-life balance front. It’s been too easy to log on at any hour of the day (or night). I’m getting better but really do miss the ability to hop in my car for a cup of coffee.

Connecticut is supposed to start relaxing their shelter in place orders on May 20th but I am still unsure of how that is going to play out. Luckily I can work remotely for as long as is needed, which might be longer than May 20th as I have a pretty compromised immune system and I don’t really want to be around people that might get me sick.

BUT – running has been a bright spot, at least for the month of April. March was a bitch for my Ulcerative Colitis. It got to the point of having another Flex Sig which showed a very, very angry colon. It was a bit scary as Mark could not bring me inside and the facility was a ghost town. After the reviewing the results, my GI doctor wanted to pull me off of Remicade.

I was scared because in the span of 6 months I would have “burned” through Remicade and Entviyo. Seeing my treatment options dwindle before my eyes did not put me in a good head-space. BUT I had another Remicade infusion scheduled for the beginning of April & my GI doctor agreed to give it “one last shot”. The plan was to have the infusion and speak to him two weeks later to see how I was feeling. If it worked – great. If not – then I would need to consider another treatment option.

Remicade
April’s Remicade Infusion

Well, I am happy to report that my symptoms has significantly improved! Two weeks later, he suggested that maybe I got a “bad batch” of Remicade during my February infusion. That would make sense given my symptoms (almost back to how I felt in June 2019) and what he saw during my Flex Sig. We agreed it was time to “Go Big or Go Home”. So over the next couple of months I will be having monthly infusions at double the dose. This will hopefully put me in remission and get me out of the UC flare that I have been dealing with for almost a year. So – fingers crossed!


Life Lately – Running

The last infusion of Remicade has not only helped me physically but I have also had consistent (non-stop) running! Coach has been very conscious of what I have been going through – so most runs are under 60 minutes. My mileage, which was 2.5 miles during the first week of April has progressed back up to 30. He has also started adding some short speed sessions. These I would normally run on the track but with my local track being closed I have headed to the road. Definitely out of my comfort zone!

Taking a Break

But as he recently said “Races are not run on the track”. I think this will be good for me as I am still hoping that a Fall Marathon will happen for me.

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED

There is nothing really to train for (except life) so training has been working out well. I am happy with these small steps forward, but in the back of my mind I fear this won’t last forever. So for the time being I will continue to take precautions and tread lightly.


Life Lately – Racing

As everyone knows – Spring Racing has basically been cancelled. I had not signed up for many races, but I was still bummed about the cancellation of the Hartford Quarter Marathon and Ragnar Cape Cod. I did run the Hartford Quarter Marathon virtually but I am not a big fan of virtual races. I know some are but I need people around me to stoke that competitive fire in me.

Ragnar 2017
Greater Hartford Quarter Marathon 2019

So when McKirdy Trained put together their McKirdy Mile Race Series – I thought “Why Not”. Like many of us I think that the last time I ran a mile for time was in High School. Being a mid to long distance runner those muscles used for running the mile have been pretty dormant. The workouts are definitely different than what I have been used to but it’s been *cough* fun.

Mark preparing for a training run

This past weekend was the first McKirdy Mile. Somehow I also got my husband to sign up for it as well.

Flat Runner Ready!

Saturday’s morning was gorgeous, a change from the week of weather we had in Connecticut. Mark had predicted that he would run an 8:15 mile and I had predicted that I would run an 8:10 mile.

Mark thought we were just going to run a mile and be done but after explaining what we needed to do – he was on board. Running solo 95% of the time, it was a treat to warm up and cool down with him.

I will spare you the blow by blow recap – but suffice to say I went out too fast (as Coach predicted I would) and had to hold on for dear life til the end. My lungs have never burned so much and it took me a bit of time to get my bearings after I was done. BUT WE DID IT!

The After Math

Mark came away with a 7:41 (a PR) and I ran a 7:06 (I think a PR for me but not sure)! The mile is definitely on another level and I cannot wait to see if I can break 7 minutes. Stay Tuned!

After our cool down we walked over to Heirloom Market to re-hydrate, re-fuel, and share war stories about how the mile went for each of us. It was a gorgeous morning and it was so nice to be able to get some Vitimen D. I am hoping that this will become a more regular occurrence as the weather warms up.


SO that’s life lately.

I am hoping to write more consistently as I start to feel better because even though life if different than it was a couple of months ago – time keeps on ticking and there’s still a life to live.

Onward WE Go!

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