I DNF'ed Clam Beach. The funny thing is, I am not all that broken up about it, whereas at some points in my life I would've considered this a portent of doom. Turns out I was like the Little Engine That Couldn't. Seriously, literally: Could. Not. I proceeded to call my husband, go home and sleep for about 30 of the next 36 hours, awaking to acknowledge a stuffy nose and all-over body aches. And no, I did not call my doctor for antibiotics, because it was likely a virus, and besides antibiotics are best avoided unless ABSOLUTELY necessary.
As an aside, 10 reasons not to take antibiotics unless ABSOLUTELY necessary:
1) diarrhea, sometimes fatal Clostridium difficile-related diarrhea
2) breeding of resistant organisms that will take over the planet earth and laugh as we all die
3) yeast infections:they dig it when we kill all our normal flora
4) nausea, vomiting
5) side effects which may include: complete depletion of your bone marrow, a life threatening, skin-sloughing rash, anaphylaxis which will likely kill you unless you have epinephrine in your back pocket, random achilles tendon rupture (runners, beware of fluoroquinolones!), liver failure, pancreatitis, seizures, renal failure…….
6) did I mention diarrhea?
7) itchy rash, all over
8) money that could be spent on something that might actually help you feel better, like a really good dose of chicken noodle soup (yes, scientifically proven)
9) your doctor is really tired of trying to explain why it won't help, and might harm you
10) antibiotics are AWESOME when necessary, so shouldn't we respect them and save them so we can use them and avoid the next Bubonic Plague scenario?
I felt guilty (back to the race I did not finish) about the friend I let go off on his own. The funny thing about running is although it is a fairly lonely sport in some ways, it is also one of community. This particular race, celebrating its 50th year, is a good example. And when you run at the side of someone you care about and enjoy, there is a bond that forms that is pretty cool. And when that someone also pushes you to be better than you would be otherwise, it is golden.
I still feel pretty cruddy today, but I went to work. The funny thing about being a doctor, is you pretty much have to be dead to take a sick day. Are you aware that your very own doctor has probably been puking their guts out prior to taking care of you because they cannot imagine taking the day off? After all, there is not really anyone to take their place. I am certain they cleaned their hands thoroughly prior to seeing you though, so you can rest easy.
I am here to tell you that although life is serious business, and running is IMPORTANT, there are some funny things about both life and running.
1) Have you ever stopped to consider just how hard it must be for the editor's of Runner's World magazine to come up with a bunch of new articles about running, which, let's be honest here, basically involves walking really fast and is done by millions upon millions of people daily without ever needing to consult a magazine article?
2) Despite #1, I do enjoy my running magazines.
3) Hundreds to thousands of racers at any given event using porta-potties. Funny.
5) Running blogs. Ha.
6) We think we know what life is about. Sometimes we get PhD's in knowing stuff. Then we die and worms eat us. Funny.
7) One of my well-educated and dear friends once ran a marathon listening to Eddie Murphy singing "Boogie in your Butt" over and over again, a multitude of times, on her iPod.
8) People think antibiotics might be the answer to EVERYTHING.
9) Diarrhea is not at all funny. Unless you are 8 years old.
10) I still think I could break 3 hours in the marathon. In your dreams, sucker!