Tuesday, 1 March 2016

My rare Half Marathon write up - Was the foot ok?

Was my foot ok during the half marathon is not really the right question to ask, given that going in it was not even a question. Oh how times have changed as long time readers of the blog may remember 4 years ago I was making posts such as :

And this post from exactly 4 years ago and posted shortly after getting back from honeymoon 

http://ledderhose.blogspot.co.uk/2012/03/pain-wedding-photos-contracture-and.html - Be interesting to see if I still do anything like that with my foot, pretty sure that since losing the weight I don't. 

Ok so I never did make a go of the shop but just look at how much pain I was in the month before I started radiotherapy (1st post above). Honestly reading that made me a little emotional. Nowadays I tend to forget just how much pain I was in and just how hard life was. More on that in a bit and back to the race. 

So I did the Brighton Half Marathon (yay me and my wife) as this was a huge achievement for both of us. When I do things I like to do them well... I spent years researching and setting up this blog, I went into science and wanted to get a PhD (though the foot stopped me), I got into badminton and ended up a coach and now I am into running. Realistically for my first half and given my Ledderhose background and only 1 year training I was searching for something in the 1 hour 40 minute range, this is a respectable time and I know many a good runner that has not achieved it. 

As it turned out the weather conditions were perfect, chilly before the start a little wind and the crowd were fantastic. I will not going into details of the route but around mile 4 my shoulder started to hurt a bit (hope this is just an injury as I hurt it a few weeks ago and not the start of frozen shoulder) and my feet did hurt a little bit but I doubt more than anyone else in the race. My Ledderhose foot did have a little stone at the top but it didn't really bother me and I have had worse things in my feet than a little stone. 

In terms of an actual race it was fairly uneventful as I ran at my target pace and stuck at that pace until the end and finished in 1:35:50 a time I am thrilled with. For me though this race was never really about the time (well not really), it was about the challenge, a challenge to show that those with Ledderhose, those with pain can turn things round, also those that are massively overweight can do things they never dreamt possible. 

Coming into the finishing line I did drop a few places but I really didn't care (and I am SUPER competitive) because at that point I just felt joyous, here I was running with 9000 other people (and coming 742nd -see competitive) and my foot didn't hurt and I just remembered some of where I was, some of the sacrifices that people have to help me get on my feet, the pain and suffering I had to go to get to the START of that race is something that most of the other runners with hopefully never have to feel. So yes for once people overtaking me didn't concern me I was in my own bubble.  

I crossed that finish line and I am certain that if I had met anyone I knew I would have broken down as I was so emotional, I nearly did cry but took a couple of minutes by the barrier to compose myself. I remember back when I was really suffering and I was sometimes in so much pain I was crying when in bed and I just can't believe how much my life has changed. 

I mentioned rare in the post because I was hoping to post this on rare disease day, 29th February. I may have been a bit late but this is my post. I am rare, I have Ledderhose, I had RT, now I run and hopefully I can now use to to not just raise money and awareness (Marathon for Dupuytren's next year) but I want to give hope to those patients out there that have Ledderhose or any rare condition and are pulling their hair out. You have a chance fight for your right to be treated, be your own advocate and look for support from friends, family and fellow patients.

Thank you so much to everyone. You are the best.... 

If there are any details you want to know then please comment and ask I am happy to share most things and if there is any content you want to see then let me know.