Lifestyle Health Ryan Sutter Is 'Back in the Firehouse' After 2 'Major' Surgeries and His Lyme Disease Diagnosis The Bachelorette winner and firefighter had spent months searching for the cause of a mystery illness, and then had ankle and knee surgery By Julie Mazziotta Julie Mazziotta Twitter Julie Mazziotta is the Sports Editor at PEOPLE, covering everything from the NFL to tennis to Simone Biles and Tom Brady. She was previously an Associate Editor for the Health vertical for six years, and prior to joining PEOPLE worked at Health Magazine. When not covering professional athletes, Julie spends her time as a (very) amateur athlete, training for marathons, long bike trips and hikes. People Editorial Guidelines Published on January 25, 2022 11:27 AM Share Tweet Pin Email Ryan Sutter is getting back to his old routines after a difficult year of health problems. The Bachelorette winner, 47, shared on Instagram that he's returned to firefighting after he had to take almost six months off as he dealt with significant health issues. First, after nearly a year of undergoing tests to identify a mystery illness, Sutter said in May that doctors finally determined he had Lyme disease that was triggered by mold toxins. And later last year, he underwent two surgeries — one on his left ankle, and the other on his right knee. "I took a walk today. After two major surgeries and nearly six months, yesterday was my first day back in the firehouse. So I walked and I reflected," he wrote. Sutter said that "it was a good day back on the job." "At one point a wide-eyed young boy and his parents stopped by to see the firetruck. At another, a young adult purposefully spit on our engine as he drove by on his scooter. We were stopped at an intersection after returning from a car accident and apparently he doesn't like firefighters?" he said, adding, though, that "both instances made me proud of what we do." Ryan Sutter Says He's 'Doing Ok' amid Lyme Disease Diagnosis: 'Finding Value in My Own Suffering' "This job isn't easy — not these days and not in this climate. But it's a tremendous opportunity, an opportunity to be challenged, to be humbled and to be taught that, despite our differences, we are all humans in this life — together in at least that much." Ryan Sutter. Presley Ann/Getty Sutter appreciates that as a firefighter, he's able to "respond repeatedly to people who need help — for any reason and at any time — even if they just spit on our fire engine from their scooter." "What a job! It's great to be back…" he said. "Still the #bestjobever." RELATED VIDEO: Ryan Sutter Is Focusing on 'Regaining' His Health: 'My Immune System Is Beat Down' After sharing his Lyme disease diagnosis in May, Sutter said he's had ups and downs in his recovery — some days he's struggling with the pain, while on others he's able to get outdoors and do the things he loves, like mountain biking with his son. And at the end of December, he was able to enjoy a long family vacation in Florida with wife Trista Sutter and their son Maxwell Alston, 14, and daughter Blakesley Grace, 12. "This week has been different — a fortuitous opportunity to escape, to be together as a family, to participate," he posted on Instagram from the beach on Dec. 31. "I missed taking pictures I actually want to look at. I missed capturing moments I know I'll look back on fondly. I missed feeling a part of my family. I missed my life. But this week it was all there. A glimpse of the past and, I know, a glimpse into the future."