Marathon Des Sables Peru Update

Or, we could take the foot,” said my doctor. In return, I said, “You didn’t have to go there.” I thought it was a negotiation, and he had to go medieval on me. My fault, though. I suppose he was right, and he had made his point. But, I didn’t have to like it one bit.

Let me go back to the beginning: So, I was training for the Marathon Des Sables Peru, a 155-mile, six-stage footrace in the Ica desert of Peru set for late November. (Click here for previous posts on MDS Peru.) Of course, training takes place around life, so one must compromise. This year saw our fortieth wedding anniversary and the fiftieth anniversary for some close friends of ours, so we all decided to celebrate with ten days on Kauai. You know, the usual—enjoying sun and sand, snorkeling, dining out, taking in the sights, and experiencing some new and exciting things.

My MDS Peru run is an End Polio Now campaign with Rotary International.

True to form, we first took a short walk to a nearby beach to go snorkeling, even though the winds were up and the waters were rough. I am famous for getting hurt in the water, so of course I got rolled over some rocks in the surf and came away a little bloodied. No big deal; I didn’t even mention it to anyone.

I don’t believe it was the snorkeling, though; it was the mud—probably.

Yep, everything seemed fine afterwards. I went about my training, and we went about our touristing. I ran the Nā Pali Coast trail one morning. Though to say “I ran” would have been a serious stretch—only Speedgoats could truly run that trail (think Karl “Speedgoat” Meltzer). A couple of days later, the four of us went on a kayak/hike/swim trip out of Wailua. We had a good bit of fun: a short kayak paddle to a very muddy, gooey, slippery trail leading to some idyllic waterfalls and a large underlying pool.

Please join us: donate at End Polio Now. #polioslastmile

I’m certain it was the mud. Sure, I forgot about the scratch on my foot, and I didn’t bother to cover it or to apply triple-antibiotic ointment. I never do, thinking that such action weakens the body’s own natural immune system. Yeah, I know—rationalization, or just laziness. Whatever.

Fast forward: We had a great time on Kauai and I didn’t notice any issue with my foot until ten days later. The reality is, when you don’t take care of what needs attention and your body is struggling anyway to recover from daily long training runs, it takes some time for the body to heal a simple wound. Go figure.

Anyway, back home my foot is hurting and itching, skin turning red and hot to the touch. Then I started to pay attention—though I still didn’t mention it to my dearest. Next day, there was a red line headed up to my ankle. Yep, I mentioned it to her then. She immediately made an appointment for the next day so I could visit our physician. I wasn’t planning to see him until I needed the fitness certification and EKG required by the MDS folks. (It’s a real requirement.)

Back to the negotiation: Doc uttered something about prescribing a course of antibiotics (UGH!) and that I should not run for “a few days”. WHAT? That’s when I started telling him about my training schedule and how critical the timing was, and…he went medieval on me.

Guess God thought I needed to rest up a bit. I’ll run one hundred miles the week after the rest up, then. I’ll show him. The doctor, I mean. Not God.

Remember, my MDS Peru run is a End Polio Now campaign. Please join us: donate at End Polio Now. #polioslastmile

A short video about the Polio’s Last Mile campaign:

We’re this close!

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