Hi - Yes, I was able to run those distances before surgery. I didn’t have any significant symptoms (other than skipped heart beats/palpitations) prior to my procedure. That said, since my procedure, I have noticed that my heart rate is lower while working out, my heart rate recovery is improved and my resting heart rate is lower (approx. 55). I also breathe a little easier.
I will say this: once I was diagnosed with an ASD, I was much more aware of palpitations, breathing, heart rate, etc. I’m sure a lot (all?) of that is mental, and I think it’s nearly impossible not to let your mind play tricks on you once you’ve learned about a congenital heart defect (after all, it’s your heart!). Nevertheless, I continued to exercise until a day or two before my procedure, since I knew I’d have to take some time off. I’m now nearly 5 months post procedure and I’m easily where I was at pre-procedure.
I wouldn’t worry too much about getting back to your marathon days. My understanding is that for patients who have symptoms pre-procedure, those symptoms subside quickly and patients feel better very quickly. You’ll be super relieved once it’s over. I was very nervous too, and I can honestly say nervousness was the worst part about the entire process.
Good luck! Feel free to reach out with any other questions.