Finally, finally, finally. After what has seemed to be an endless cycle of illness, surgery, and recovery – I think I am back to my old self. I really feel that I am back to where I was early in February – healthy. Minus one gallbladder, plus one stent.

I have learned a lot from the last two and a half months.

I have learned that my wife is the strongest woman I have ever known and that I would be nowhere without her love and support. She has shown me what being a true partner is all about. She has sacrificed so much and never asked for anything in return. She has spent too much time sitting in hospital waiting rooms, wondering what was going on, wondering if I’m OK. She has spent too much time as a single parent, juggling her work, the kids, and everything else, while I have been stuck in the hospital. And, through all of this, all she has ever wanted is for me to be healthy again.

Another important thing I have learned, and this came to me just today after my workout, is this; you never really know the absolute joy of being healthy, until you have faced serious illness and recovered. I didn’t have cancer, but I think I now have a better understanding of what powered Lance Armstrong up those mountains for seven years in the Tour de France. Sure, he has great physical strength and incredible cardio fitness, but – most importantly – he has seen the other side of things. He knows the fear, weakness, and depression that illness can bring and therefore he knows the joy of health, fitness, and wellbeing. I know I will never take my health for granted again. I will work everyday to make sure I stay healthy, that I enjoy life, and that I use my time to be a better person.

Yesterday I got my staples removed and I was given the green light from my doctor to start running again. I had a really good workout and felt healthy and strong throughout the entire run. I didn’t experience any abdominal pain and everything seemed to stay in place. Anyhow, here are the stats from my workout today…

  • Total Time: 36 minutes (includes 2 minute warm up and 3 minutes cool down)
  • Total Distance: 3.20 miles
  • Max Heart Rate: 190 bpm (101%)
  • Average Heart Rate: 156 bpm (83%)
  • Total Calories: 625 (25% fat)

I’m looking for that average heart rate to drop down a little bit as I get in better and better shape and I’d like t o be able to run a little faster – I averaged about 10 minute miles for most of the run. Only the warm up and cool down were slower. Bottom-line this was a really good start, but I have a long way to go to before I will consider myself in really great shape.

FYI, I use a Polar F6 heart rate monitor to get the stats I filled in above. I really like it and would recommend it to anyone.

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