In a couple of days, I’ll be out there on the trails of Oahu pushing myself over several ridges and streams with a smile. This year at the HURT 100 Mile Endurance Run, I running for the Hawaii Children’s Cancer Foundation. Teaming up with this non-profit has been very inspirational. Knowing that there will be cancer children waiting for me at the finish line has added extra incentive to move my butt around the 100 miles. I’ve been on this course the last 6 of 7 years, with only 2006 being an “off” year due to radiation therapy. With luck and training, I was able to finish the 100 miler twice and the 100 kilometer four times. This year, like all the others, I am going the distance.
The three years since cancer required me to change my approach. In 2007 The Comeback, I just run on anger and didn’t care about the outcome. I really wanted to vent, cry and get the cancer past me. Sure I paid a heavy price with pain, but managed a smile around the tears. It was worth it. By 2008, I was well trained and solid but fell short of the 100 miler with only 80 miles completed. My wife pulled me after I could no longer function due to a new experience of rhabdomyolosis which nearly stopped my kidney. I had to relearn how to manage my system since cancer since the previous 18 years of information was now not working. I had to switch hydration plans, increase potassium and sodium levels as well as consume more fats. This experiment through the rest of 2008 worked and I was ready to rock in 2009. By completing a 100 miler takes more than chutzpah! It takes some luck too. And in 2009, I felt the best ever for an endurance event. Legs were fresh, stomach solid, head clear, not sleepy at night – perfect…except for one problem. My feet suffered a new issue at mile 50 causing absolute pain with every flat or downhill step. I tried everything, but still had amazing pain. I could hardly walk. So at mile 60, I had no option but to almost crawl the 7.5 miles to the 100K option. I tossed those shoes that led to a damaged big toe bone on both feet and what turned out to be a blown left foot joint. It’s taken me over 10 months to overcome the damage done in Jan. 2009!
So here I am, feet feeling fine since around November and a smart balanced training plan. In a few days, I’ll be out there in a place that I find very spiritually healing ready to suffer with a smile knowing that I will go the distance no matter the outcome. And for the Hawaii Children Cancer Foundation, we have raised donations and community interests in a time when both are truly needed. Look for me out there and visit my webiste with information on the cause at http://www.CancerRunner.org.