1. Suzanne McNeal

    Dear Alexandra,
    You have detailed a well thought out plan to regain your health. Just make sure that you follow it!
    I’m sure that it may be difficult at times…but the important thing is that you get healthy soon! We have the holidays to look forward to!
    Your blog is very informative and so honestly written. I am looking forward to reading your next post!
    Enjoy your hiatus!
    Lots of hugs!

    • Thank you Sue! I’m not sure which is worse between running while anemic or taking a break from running altogether. Actually I do! When I think of how sad it is that I can’t run, I think of how frustrating I was to be walking and catching my breath at every street corner. It’s definitely better to take care of my health issues first and run later.

      I love that you are a faithful reader of my blog! I very much look forward to the holidays too.

      Big hugs!

  2. I’m glad you got a clear diagnosis and now you can work towards getting healthier! I had anemia once before, but it was before I was a runner. I remember how exhausted I was ALL.THE.TIME. I can’t imagine what it was like for you to push through on some of those runs you’ve done recently. You must have been running on sheer willpower!

    I know another runner who had anemia. Once she got her numbers back up she went on to PR in the marathon with a 3:06! Keep the goals alive because you will be able to chase them soon enough! 😀
    Kristina Running recently posted…The Unofficial Start of WinterMy Profile

    • Oh that is so encouraging to hear! I know I’ll get back to running soon enough. Many runners come back after an injury or illness and do in fact PR! Running is always there for us when we’re ready to get back.
      Come to think of it, I can’t believe I ran as long as I did either. Can you believe I had a 10 mile run on schedule for this weekend? I think I could have killed myself! I’m very glad I found out before attempting another long run like that…

  3. Suzanne McNeal

    P.S. I’m sure Gavin will not complain about the extra red meat! Am not so sure about the liver (which I like) and the blood pudding! (I doubt that most Americans know what it is!) When I was a little girl, I would spent a few weeks each summer at my aunt Corona’s in QC.and she would cook “du boudin” on Sunday’s. It was considered a specialty! My sister Denise and I loved it! Not so sure that I would like it today?!
    Lots of hugs to you and gavin!

    • Haha, boudin is the best! I grew up eating it. My mom would make it once in a while, and sometimes she also made calf liver to go with it. I liked them both. Liver is definitely underrated in my opinion. Boudin is just not known in the U.S. but it’s a popular sausage in the British Isles. In France, they eat “boudin noir” with apples and onions cooked inside and mashed potatoes on the side. Next time you’re in Montreal, you should go to the French restaurant “Lemeac” and order the boudin noir. It’s served with a side or pureed celeriac (celery root) instead of mashed potatoes. AMAZING!

  4. I came to check out your blog after you commented on mine. And my jaw dropped because I’ve been through everything you describe here. I was diagnosed with iron-deficiency anemia back in 2008, but they (GP, gastroenterologist, hemologist) had absolutely zero idea why. The fatigue, shortness of breath, crankiness, ice cravings — all of it was there. I nearly needed a blood transfusion, my hemoglobin and hemocrit levels were so low. But nobody knew why. Being a man in my late 30s, anemia isn’t exactly supposed to happen.

    After a battery of tests (swallowing the live camera capsule was a hootenanny!) I was diagnosed with UC in 2013 (and was sidelined from running for nearly two months during that process, yeesh that was a difficult time) At least we finally knew WHY the anemia was happening. I’ve been on Delzicol ever since, and I still take iron supplements daily as a precaution. UC flare-ups still sideline me once in awhile, but the iron (and vitamin C) helped almost instantly. Trust in your doctor’s advice, but you’ll bounce back a LOT faster than you think you will. The body remembers and adapts.

    Best of luck with everything!
    Matthew recently posted…Race Review: 2015 Michelob Ultra Fort Lauderdale 13.1 (11/15/2015), or: “Moving eight miles a minute for months at a time…”My Profile

    • Hi Matthew and thank you for visiting my blog! I was so surpised to hear you and I share the same condition. I remember you writing about taking time off running due to health issues on your blog and I thought “oh here’s someone else like me!”. I am so glad to hear you have UC and the anemia under control. It must be frustrating to be anemic and not know why. In my case, I definitely know why, but I take it that you did not have any visible bleeding during your flares? I’ve heard of the camera procedure you are referring to. A good friend of my parents (a man) is anemic and the doctors don’t know why, so he had to swallow this camera to see if he has any internal bleeding in the GI tract. Sometimes the amount of blood loss is so small it can’t be seen. I can’t believe that small losses can gradually lead to anemia over time… it really adds up.

      Thank you so much for your encouragement. I am very confident the iron supplements will rise my hemoglobin count. As far as UC, I have been on Lialda (no effect whatsoever), Prednisone (no effect the first time and complete resolution of symptoms the second time, then tapering led to relapse), Rosawa enemas (worked the first time but stopped working soon after) and now I am 1.5 month into Humira (biologics). Still waiting for remission and in the last two days, dare I say I am feeling some improvement! I’m praying it will work so I can get back into running! I miss it so much…

      But I’m glad I found your blog! I’ll keep reading your race reviews and other running articles. It’s nice to have race reports from a fellow South Florida runner.

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