Local area runner and fellow Nittany Valley Running club member, Tara Murray, writes a monthly column for the local newspaper here in State College (The Centre Daily Times). This is the same paper that featured the column about my PCT thru-hike last year. Last week, she sent both Jeff Smucker (another local VT100 runner) and me some questions about our experience at the race and then wrote the following article that was posted today:
Congrats to Jeff who had a killer race (21hrs 8 mins)!
TWO additional medical followup notes:
- In an earlier posts I noted how elevated my liver numbers were when I had my blood work done for my Antarctica Physical Exam. Both the doctor and I were a little worried, but had assumed these numbers were high because I had just run the Finger Lakes 50 mile ultra 4 days prior. There are a slew of medical papers out there that document similar cases of endurance athletes having elevated liver enzymes post-race. Sure enough, I had my blood-work redone 5 days later, and all of my numbers are within normal values. Woo hoo! Big relief as I am certainly predisposed to potential liver issues.
- As far as my recent back troubles. Both the doc and I are fairly convinced there is a single cause. While my sitting posture is not perfect, and I do put a lot of strain on my back with all the running, we agree that the single culprit is in fact my mattress. My mattress is well over 15 years old and it feels like it. My back first started hurting a little right when I got back from Antarctica. I also noticed that all the pain went away while I was in Colorado...sleeping on a firm hotel bed. I thought back to what might have changed and remembered that I had rotated my mattress when I first changed my sheets after returning from the ice. I have not rotated my bed since (and yes I've changed sheets). I can't believe I'm going to say this, but it may finally be time to suck it up, and buy a new mattress. The past two nights I've literally slept on the floor. For now, I'm going to rotate it back and perhaps get some prices on new mattresses. In a perfect world, I'd get one of those awesome tempur-pedic beds, but as a grad student, on grad student salary, that's just not an option. The doctor today was singing the praises of those select-comfort beds, but after dealing with enough puncture repairs while camping, I'd prefer not to have a mattress that's filled with air. At any rate, at least I don't have a herniated disc or something crazy like that.
I think I'm finally starting to feel my age a bit. sigh.