Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Not running makes my soul sore

It turns out that the blood in my urine is not dehydration related as
it happened again yesterday. I kind of knew it was dehydration when I
was at the doctors last week but I the absence of a diagnosis of what
it was went with it.

I ran to work yesterday morning and there it was again - IPA pee.

My thinking now is that this is footstrike hemolysis. Not least of all
because I have no other symptoms and actually my foot strike has been
a bit off to the point where my sole is sore.

Not running is making my soul sore.

Of course I am no doctor.

The other development is my left leg issue which is now excruciating.
Getting up from sitting takes me from 0 to 9 on the pain index. A
quick Google reveals this is likely piriformis syndrome - I am seeing
a musculoskeletal specialist next week.

This is all very demoralising as I was loving how this year was
shaping up and was aiming to do a 100k in the next month or so.

Plans once again onto the back burner. Hopefully not for too long...

I'm not very good when I'm injured and unable to run. It is as I have
said so many times what I do, what I love and what I am.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Peeing blood....update

On Monday this week, having returned from Portugal on Sunday, i contacted the Doctor and explained what i had experienced with regards to peeing blood post run. They asked me to deliver a urine sample and pick up a form to have blood taken for testing. I duly did this on Monday with an appointment on Thursday afternoon to get the results. 

This meant a week without running which was not pleasant as it just served to keep in my mind that i wasn't running and why. I continued to have no symptoms or further episodes of peeing blood during this period.

It was odd at the doctors as while they couldn't confirm what it was they could confirm that it wasn't rhabdomyolsis or kidney failure. Neither was i pregnant and it wasn't cancer. This was of course great news and led to a diagnosis that it was probably extremedehydration that took a while to recover from.

Lesson well and truly learned and, more importantly, i am back running :)

Adidas Ultraboost Uncaged - Simply the Best!

I have been a fan of the Adidas Ultra Boost for some time and am on my 3rd pair of the originals. What I like about them, fit and comfort aside is that they are durable. The outer rubber really does last and unlike other brands where I struggle to get 500 miles out of a pair of shoes I can easily get upwards of 700 miles out of the Boosts.

When I saw that Adidas had upgraded the Ultra Boost to the Ultra Boost Uncaged I was pretty excited. For me, like many, the Ultra Boost is the perfect shoe. Admittedly I don't have wide feet so that really helps as it is quite a narrow shoe but it just works.

The Ultra Boost Uncaged looks similar yet very different. I have not read the specs but superficially the changes are a removal of the 3 stripes cage that was attached to the laces and secured the shoe. The main change though is the fit and entry to the shoe. There is now a gaiter/sock instead of a tongue and heel cup. It's a little like the football boots that the top players now wear with the sock piece.

Out of the box I was a little concerned about the sock as it looked like it might be quite high and also how tight would it be? I needed have worried - it's deceptive and sits just under the ankle bone perfectly comfortably. You wouldn't know it was there. It just sits there secure. The heel cup is also more padded inside than the previous Ultra Boosts.

The lacing system is different with eyelets woven into the knitted upper rather than being part of the previous cage. The three strips are now contrasting and on the front of the shoe.

Underneath the shoe looks the same. Full length Boost sole and the Continental rubber outsole.

I used these shoes first time while on holiday in Portugal. I got changed and put the shoes on, as I was walking around the tiled floor of the villa the shoes were squeaking. The grip is insane! The sound is like a car in a car park making tight turns where the rubber just grips the surface.

Out on the road these shoes were brilliant. As comfortable as any Boost I have worn, this really is a performant shoe. I have run Ultra's in Boosts and parkruns, they provide comfort and can be fast too. While on holiday I used them on tarmac, compacted sand, stony pathways and even 5 miles on a treadmill. They coped absolutely fine with this no problem. I wouldn't use these for a wet trail run but that's just common sense!

As a final endorsement when I got them out of the box and showed my kids they were in awe and talked about wanting a pair themselves. It was a little like in Indiana Jones in Raiders of the Lost Ark when they find the Ark of the Covenant and just before things go a little Pulp Fiction everyone marvels at how beautiful it is.... it was just like that but without the bloodshed.

Great looking shoes, great performing shoes. I have had many false dawns with shoes where I say something like "I will only wear these from now on" only to change track as a problem emerges - with Adidas and Boost technology I will not change. These are my 4th Ultra Boosts and 6th pair of Boosts across the range.

Simply the best!

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Peeing blood...

As a runner there's few things that will stop me running. With niggles or aches i do the equivalent of turning the radio up I the car to "fix" the engine noise. 

This changed recently, after a run on holiday in the Algarve I came home and my pee was red. Not just a little, it looked like IPA. Now I like an IPA as much as the next man but not when it's leaving my body the same colour that it went in. Initially thinking it an anomaly I set about hydrating and with each passing toilet visit the colour diluted eventually returning to normal. Nothing to worry about, right?


Next run and the same outcome. Pee like cherry juice.

The runs I was doing were not long or hard efforts. They were around an hour or so and maybe 7-8 miles. The only difference was that it was hotter than I am normally used to, around 20-25 Celsius. To counter this I was drinking first thing and then carrying a litre with me that I was also drinking. 

After the second time this happened I took a break of a couple of days - my pee looked normal but post run was the same cherry red. I did some research and lots of things come up, more later, but I had/have no other symptoms. I am in no pain at all, I have no fatigue, I have nothing going on other then blood in my urine. 

I decided to put out a tweet tagging a couple of sources to see if they had any ideas as to what it could be; Ian Corless at @talkultra, Eric at @ultrarunnerpodcast along with @runnersworld. I included a picture of my we which is not something I ever imagined doing. 

The replies came in, the ultra community proving how supportive it is. It was scary reading. 

My research pointed to everything from dehydration, slapping bladder, urinary tract infection through to cancer. The advice from @ameliaboone to see a doctor is sound and was echoed by @ukrunchat but the response from Ian pointing towards rabdomyloysis was perhaps the most scary. 

.....kidney damage
.....acute renal failure

Chilling and actually made me a little emotional. 

Eric then directed me to a podcast episode where he talked about kidney stones.  I listened to this and while much of his experience is mirrored by mine they are not exactly alike as I have no other obvious symptoms. Specifically I have zero pain. In fact other than pee that looks like beer there's nothing wrong with me. 

With the advice that this is almost certainly related to hydration I have increased my efforts with this. I am drinking far more than I was even a week ago in an effort to restore hydration, coffee is limited to first thing and evening beers have been Cast aside in favour of water and iced tea. I know that I don't drink enough but it's always been the same and never been a problem.

Until now. 

We fly home on Sunday, I will see the doctor on Monday. After that who knows? I think I may know too much and yet know nothing. The internet is a dangerous place with limited knowledge. 

What's different with this is that unlike a niggle where you can still run a bit this stops you in your tracks. Blood in your urine is grown up and needs a response as such. I am hoping it's a simple fix, that I was just very dehydrated - that a week or two of rest with good eating and good drinking will resolve the issue. Anything else is pretty scary and at this point not something I want to really think about. 

Without wishing my holiday over too quickly I need to see the doctor.