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Tough Mudder: Report

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Last Saturday, Jordan and I, as well as some of our friends, completed a goal of ours. We participated in - and finished! - the Tough Mudder, Topeka!



This is us BEFORE the Tough Mudder. Jordan wore a kilt with his family clan's traditional colors. (Don't worry, he had compression shorts on underneath!) lol. And I'm the only girl in the group, in the blue shorts.



And here we are AFTER! For some reason, I took off my hat and sweatband for this picture, but I DID complete the challenge!

Let's see, where to start... The course was 11 miles with multiple obstacles, such as jumping over fire and hay bales, crawling through mud under barbed wire, taking an icy plunge in a dumpster full of ice water, and many many more. The course had lots of turns in it, so at some points we saw an obstacle ahead but didn't actually come to it for a few miles, and had other obstacles before it.

I skipped 3 obstacles. "Just the Tip" was shimmying along 2x4's over a big puddle. I can't accurately describe this obstacle, so if you are interested, here's a youtube video that kind of shows it. Although I will say, the 2x4s were way more muddy and slippery during our race than this video shows. SOOOOO many people fell in, and there was a note saying "Strong Swimmers Only" which is why I decided to bypass this one. www.youtube.com/watch?v=LlriVa_9BnM

The other one I skipped was called "Dark Lightning." You had to crawl through a tunnel 1/2 filled with water, with electrical wires hanging down. If you, or anyone else in the water with you at the time, got a shock, everyone got a shock. I almost did this one, but when I stuck my head in the tunnel and all I heard was cursing and screaming, I chickened out...

The last one I skipped was "Walk the Plank" which was a 15' high dive into icy water below. Again, "Strong Swimmers Only" plus I'm scared of heights...

But I at least attempted all of the other obstacles! One that I was very proud of myself was called "Funky Monkey" which were monkey bars that extended over... you guessed it, icy water. The first half had a slight incline, and the second half had a slight decline. I almost made it across! I slipped once but was able to catch myself, but about 4 bars from the end, I fell in the water.

The scariest one was the "Cage Crawl." Again, kind of hard to put into words, but basically, I was laying on my back in water and pulling myself along by the chain link fence placed over the water. I was doing ok until the very end. There was an incline to get out of the water, but being on my back, I didn't know how close I was to the end, and my face was going underwater and I panicked. I was able to turn underwater and swim my way out. I only ended up being about 5 feet from the end, but when you start to panic, you need out ASAP. When I got out, Jordan had to support me for about 2 minutes because my legs were like jelly and I was unable to walk. Very scary. www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zlm3qQM2X2I

The toughest and muddiest obstacle was aptly named the "Mud Mile." It's ONLY redeeming quality is that it wasn't an actual mile. It was maybe 100 yards of muddy hills and trenches. It took us about 30 minutes to complete this obstacle! It definitely required a team effort! The easiest way we found to do it was to had the person at the top of the hill grab someone's hand from the bottom. While the top person slid down the hill, the other person would climb up. It was such an energy zapper, placed at mile 9 so the last 2 miles were extra tough. Our clothes were totally covered in mud, which felt very heavy. This video does not do it justice and looks WAAAAAY easier than our Mud Mile! The muck was up to your knees at some points, whereas this video looks like just water in the trenches. The hills were so slick and slimy. But at least the video will give you a clue as to what it was like. www.youtube.com/watch?v=6lsJ3t6z-aQ

They say that the Tough Mudder is a challenge, not a race, and I totally agree. It took us about 4 1/2 hours to finish the 11 mile course. But we did it! We had fun and that was most important. Jordan and I are really proud of ourselves, and hope to be able to do the Tough Mudder in Scotland someday!

Oh! And my toe held up ok. :) No pain anymore, just waiting for the nail to grow back over the next year or so.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KPETSCHE 10/28/2013 12:08AM

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That's an awesome race report! Great job, Jessika!
BTW, that Dark Lightening obstacle that you bypassed sounds pretty sadistic! There's no way that I would have gone through that, either!

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BEARSFANNDENVER 9/26/2013 10:21PM

    Way to go, Jessika! I knew you could do it. Now, you have this accomplishment to look back on, and to draw strength from in the future!

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CCSDESTINY 9/26/2013 1:02PM

    I laughed out loud at the cursing and screaming remarks on the tunnel...wow...ok, I am quite sure a tough mudder is NOT on my list of things to do! You are much more ambitious than I think I will ever be!

Congrats on s strong run!!

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PMRUNNER 9/26/2013 12:44PM

    Way to go!

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FITNAPTURAL 9/26/2013 12:44PM

    That's awesome and sounds incredibly difficult! I probably would've skipped more than 3! emoticon

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NATPLUMMER 9/26/2013 10:18AM

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KNYAGENYA 9/26/2013 6:27AM

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JAN155 9/25/2013 9:08PM

    Jessika, WOW! That sounds grueling and amazingly hard! I am super impressed! It make our Va 10-Miler this coming Saturday seem like a walk in the park! You rock!

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JANNEPERRY 9/25/2013 9:04PM

    Jessika you are amazing! You always are up for challenges of any kind. I'm so impressed. emoticon emoticon

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GRANDMAPATTYV 9/25/2013 6:14PM

    You are my hero.... I'd like to do one, but like you not a strong swimmer - I like the fact that no one makes you do any of the obstacles! emoticon

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DLDMIL 9/25/2013 5:14PM

    I have always heard that the tough mudder were fun and hard. someday I might have to do it.

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STEPHM-ARATHON 9/25/2013 4:54PM

    This blog really makes me want to do one someday! Sounds like an awesome race! Way to go :)

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Toe Update, part II

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Yesterday, I went to the doctor and had my toenail removed. The local block was the worst part - that stings! But the removal went fine and it was over before I knew it. I was feeling pretty good and thought that my problems were solved!

Until the local started to wear off. Now it's in pain, but a different kind of pain than before. But I'm back to work today, where I have to wear closed toed shoes, so we'll see how much pain I'm in by the end of the day!

The doctor also changed up my antibiotics. The new ones are a lot smaller and easier to swallow. So another 10 days for a total of 30 days... ugh.

I asked him about the Tough Mudder, which is 2.5 weeks away. He said it should be scabbed enough and the infection gone by then, so I should be able to do the race. But my training is on hold, so I'm sure it will be the slowest, most painful race ever! lol

Continued prayers would be appreciated! Thanks, friends!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GEOPUNGUIN 9/11/2013 1:45PM

    hope things are better, but do not think it will be for a while.

yes, the local is usually the worst...but i would think without it would be much worse (tho' the last time I got stitches they offered to do it without the local and I probably should have).

take care

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BEARSFANNDENVER 9/8/2013 11:16AM

    Still praying for you. I know how hard it is to have to lay off due to injuries. Hang in there! emoticon

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JAN155 9/4/2013 8:02PM

    Oh! Being in and out of town for the last several weeks, I've missed the first two blogs but just read them - I am so sorry! I know it's got to be painful and frustrating to miss training. I just hope it's better and even if you're slow on the mudder, you're still way ahead of most of us who have never done one!

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NATPLUMMER 9/4/2013 11:08AM

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KNYAGENYA 9/4/2013 8:49AM

    Ouch! Take care and make sure to rest up.

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CSKIES1 9/4/2013 7:52AM

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That does sound painful...hope your day goes smoothly!!

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Toe Update

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Well, I finished the first round of antibiotics, and my toe was slightly better but not 100% healed. So I went in for a recheck on Tuesday, and the doctor gave me another 10 days of antibiotics, and scheduled me to remove the toenail.

So on Tuesday, Sept 3 I will go in for the "procedure" and to be honest, I'm freaked out and think I might faint. But they say they do it all the time and it's no big deal. They just numb the toe and all I should feel is pressure... Still oogs me out.

That being said, I need to take a break from running. At least until the infection is gone and my nail grows back to prevent reinfection. Who knows how long that will be. I still plan on doing the Tough Mudder, because we have already paid and have been looking forward to it all year. But my marathon and/or ultra marathon will have to wait until next year.

Kinda sad, but since I'm not emotionally attached to the joys of running, I think I'll survive!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GEOPUNGUIN 9/3/2013 8:03PM

    sorry I haven't kept up with your blogs...I now have a picture of a nephew in a sling next to a nephew in a cast with a walker and a niece with nothing wrong...knock on wood...

hope you heal up quickly...

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KPETSCHE 8/29/2013 10:03PM

    Sounds ucky but I'm sure it'll be easier than you're expecting it to be. Our imagination is a "wonderful" thing, isn't it? Take care and get that healed up.

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JANNEPERRY 8/29/2013 3:31PM

    You'll do fine with your "procedure" and as you said you are not addicted to running and can find many more ways to stay active--maybe some that you actually think are fun!

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SIGLED 8/29/2013 12:52PM

    Hang in there! Get it done & let it heal. You'll run to a very old age! And yes, you will survive. Just put the song on & sing away: I will SURVIVE! I WILL SURVIVE!

I had a partial removal several years ago. Its not bad. Very quick. The main thing is to follow through on the healing. Do what the Dr tells ya.

Comment edited on: 8/29/2013 1:02:11 PM

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NATPLUMMER 8/29/2013 10:37AM

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JOELEVENACIOUS 8/29/2013 8:28AM

    Second opinion?

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MIRAGE727 8/29/2013 8:22AM

    Wishing you all the best & fast healing! Stay strong!
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KNYAGENYA 8/29/2013 8:11AM

    Wow! I was hoping you wouldn't have to lose the nail. I hope it goes well.

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1935MARY 8/29/2013 8:10AM

    You are worrying to much..I had this done years ago. It only takes a few minutes. it was over before I even knew they had begun. I don't know how long it take to grow back, I had mine permanently removed, but I say in a month it should be coming back. Your doctor can tell you. You will be fine . There is nothing to worry about, I had to have mine done in the winter and wearing flip flops in 30 degree weather wasn't fun lol. emoticon

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CSKIES1 8/29/2013 8:00AM

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Sore Big Toe

Thursday, August 15, 2013

I've had a sore big toe on my left foot off and on since April. I did the Hard Charge, which was an obstacle course through the mud, etc. I noticed a week later that my toe hurt and assumed I stubbed it during one of the many obstacles.

I kept forgetting about it because it didn't hurt all the time, only when I kicked a chair or a dog stepped on my foot at work, etc. Then in June, I started noticing that I hadn't cut that toe's nail for a while.

In July, Jordan told me I need to go to the doctor, but of course I brushed him off. I took the nail polish off my toes, and surprise surprise, the nail was kinda yellow and had a brownish black bruised looking area under the nail. So I painted it back up and ignored it some more.

Then on Monday this week, my toe hurt all day at work, to the point I took some ibuprofen, which is unlike me. By Tuesday, it was still hurting and looked red and swollen, so I finally called my doctor.

I had my appointment today. Found out I have paronychia - basically a tender nail disease commonly caused by bacteria. I got some antibiotics and it should heal just fine. But that turned out to be a separate issue than the fungus. The doctor said the fungus was common in runners, but the treatment for it is 2-3 months long and can cause problems with the liver. Basically he said he wouldn't do the treatment unless things were a lot worse, and at that point he would probably remove the nail.

So the good news is the paronychia caused the acute pain and should be good to go in a week or so. The bad news is I'll have to keep dealing with the fungal infection. But since that isn't the source of my pain, I think I can handle that.

The doctor didn't specifically tell me to stop running, but I think I will rest my foot for a few days, at least until the pain goes away.

Sorry for the gross blog, but at least I have some answers!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JANNEPERRY 8/20/2013 9:04PM

    My toe fungus never goes away because the environment is so ripe for growing!

Glad to hear you got the bacterial part under control and hopefully feeling much better soon!
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NATPLUMMER 8/18/2013 10:23PM

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BEARSFANNDENVER 8/17/2013 10:11AM

    I never knew one could get a bacterial infection in toe nails!

Hope you're feeling better soon!

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KNYAGENYA 8/16/2013 11:14AM

    Yikes! I am glad you were able to get it looked at and given something to help it. I hope it gets better soon.

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BOILHAM 8/15/2013 7:28PM

    I've had a minor fungus infection on a toe for several years. Like you, I figure the 'cure' is worse than leaving it the way it is. No pain. I keep it dry as much as I can and it's no big deal. Good luck.

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SPERRIN2012 8/15/2013 5:15PM

    Yucky, I've had a sore left toe for ten years now but not all the time? I went to a podiatrist and had an x-ray done on the toe but there was nothing broken so I've just been living with it. I do believe that certain shoes make it worse than others. hope yours gets better soon.

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DEEASHAUB05 8/15/2013 5:11PM

  Glad to hear you got some answers. At least the running is only put off temporarily.

Hang in there.

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Trading a FM for an Ultra

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Well, it looks like I won't be able to do the Prairie Fire Marathon this year. It is October 13th, which is the 2nd Sunday of the month. Jordan and I have obligations at church on the 2nd Sunday, and I haven't been able to find a sub. The people who normally sub for us said no, so now I'm kinda stuck. At least I haven't signed up yet...

I was looking around to see if there are any other marathons near Wichita between October and November. It's slim-pickings, and I have to keep in mind that I work every other weekend, so that plays into which races I am able to do.

So that being said, I probably won't get to run my marathon this year.

BUT! I might trade the FM for an Ultra! I did find a 6/12/24 hour ultra sponsored by the Kansas Ultra Society! I think I could do the 12 hr. I've done an 8 hr ultra before, and I wouldn't have to adjust my marathon training plan too much to turn it into an Ultra training plan. If it gets closer and I think the 12 hr is too much, I can always do the 6 hr, which would still surpass the marathon distance.

The race is November 16th, which I happen to have that weekend off from work. And it's not on a 2nd Sunday.

Hmm, I'll have to mull this over for a few days before making any final decisions.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANOTHERMOMOF2 8/13/2013 8:37AM

    Sorry you won't be able to do the PF marathon as you had planned. Have a great day!

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KPETSCHE 8/13/2013 3:44AM

    It's a pain working every other weekend - I do the same. Definitely takes a little extra planning and looking ahead at the calendar. I'm sure you'll figure it out with the race - can you believe how fast the year is flying?!

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BEARSFANNDENVER 8/12/2013 9:23AM

    You can do anything you put your mind to! emoticon

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NATPLUMMER 8/11/2013 5:20PM

    Something to consider.

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KNYAGENYA 8/11/2013 3:40PM

    Wow! Good luck.

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