Wednesday, September 21, 2011

A Runner's Rite of Passage

An alternate title for this post Black & Bruised

If you've been a runner very long at all or ever looked through an issue of Runner's World, you've probably heard of runners getting black toenails.  (yes, I know it sounds awful, and lucky for you fabulous readers there will be no pictures in this post.)  Seasoned runners have tons of stories about how their toenails have turned black and eventually fallen off.  When you hear these stories, you can't help but detect a certain hint of pride in their voices.

My first experience with any sort of toenail problems was in the spring after our double half marathon weekend (miss that post? read about it here).  The second race of that weekend was hilly and wet and very hard on the toenails.  After the race, several of my toenails were bruised underneath.  A couple of them recovered, but 2 turned black and eventually came off over the summer. I will admit I felt a tiny bit of pride knowing I'd hit this milestone...but mostly I felt annoyance and pain.

Last weekend near the end of the long run, I started to notice that my toes felt tender.  Upon inspection, two of them have blisters underneath the toenail - who even knew that was possible? Worse than how bad they look is how bad they hurt!  I'm not exaggerating when I tell you it hurts when the sheet touches them when I go to bed.  I'm taking it easy this week and hoping they stop hurting by the Women's Half on Saturday.  I know in another week or so they are not going to be pretty.  At least it is almost time for boots!  I'm thinking I might need a new pair of boots to console myself.

* Mark and I will be running our first marathon on October 31st in Dublin with Team in Training.  We have to raise $10,000 in order to participate.  So far, we've raised just over $8,000 so we only have $2,000 to go! Please help us get there!  Our deadline is October 14.  All the money we raise benefits the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Visit our website to make a donation and for more information.

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