Tuesday, May 5, 2015

ST. A'S PART ONE ( the gross part)

Warning: This post is absolutely disgusting and unless you are a cyclist/triathlete...you probably shouldn’t read it. Trust me.

Whew, what a ride! Just back from a week in sunny St. Pete. It's our favorite place in the world, so we are always excited to go down for St. Anthony's.

Let me back it up for a bit. Training has been going great. I went to California to help lead the Vanderkitten Road Cycle Training Camp and it was an absolute blast. We rode around 200 miles in three days and it was brilliant. I loved it and all the riding made me feel really strong. I was feeling really good at the end of camp, super fit and then the triathlon gods decided yet again to throw me a ringer. What's my life though without a little adversity? Seems to be a way of life for me these days ;)

Once back at home on that Sunday, I noticed something in the nether region. I knew exactly what it was...a saddle sore. I rode for three days, a whole lot of miles, on a saddle and bike that were not mine plus a whole different position than what I normally ride! Hence the problem. I don't normally get these, think I had one my whole life due to switching a saddle, so this is new to me so I decided to deal with myself. BIG MISTAKE! Out came the needle and the poking. Ouch! By Monday evening, it had tripled in size and on Tuesday I was in urgent care at 9am! It was so bad in fact, that the doctor who winced when she looked down there, said "OH MY GOD!"

That did not really help at all. Thanks doc. She said that I had to see a surgeon right away because there was absolutely nothing she could do. She was taking needles, draining, slicing and dicing. All things that left me gasping.  Yep, that's right. The ugly part of women's cycling that no one likes to talk about. Saddle sores gone wild!!!
Hello. My name is Tonya. Yea, a little something like that anyway.
The worse part in my case is that they were infected with staph. Thanks to that damn self inflicted  needle poking. Yay me.  Anyway, back in the car and off to the surgeon. When he looked at it, his expression was just like the doctor before. Gasp! Apparently, no one in Sville as ever seen a doctor for this type of cycling problem. The doctors seemed horrified yet mesmerized all at the same time. Anyway, the surgeon wanted to lance them open, and place stitches in to keep them open to drain... GROSS, but I pleaded that I had the race coming up and if any way possible, could we see if we could get these things healed up on their own so that I could try to race. He said yes but wasn't feeling really positive about it.  I was placed on three, yes three antibitotics (Doxycycline, Sulfamethoxazole and Trimethoprim.)  Also hydrocodone for pain. Let me tell you... THIS ORDEAL WAS PAINFUL! The pain killers helped for about 2 hours before they would wear off and the antibiotics made me sick. So so sick. I could barely even eat. I knew I had to take them though or there would be no St. A's!

No training leading up to race week, but lots of this!
Because of the problem, I could not get in the pool, I couldn't run and sure as hell couldn't think about getting on a bike saddle!! So, two weeks with nothing leading up to an Oly. Yay me. The plan was to go in with my existing fitness and hope for the best. The next 10 days would be Epsom salt baths every 4 hours. I became best friends with a product called Prid's Drawing Salve.  Savlon Cream and Neosporin also became constant companions. The pressure from these things was intense. It felt like a bomb under my skin that needed to explode. On day 4 after a hot salt bath...I got a little action- HALLELUJAH! Immediate sensation of release, relief. Back into the surgeon for inspection. This was not draining quickly though and he again suggested lancing. I again said that I needed to race. He said it wasn't looking good. Sigh.

I will save you the rest of the gory details and there's a lot more gore, anyway...  by Tuesday of race week, these things were still slowly doing their thing. It was absolutely disgusting. The antibiotics had wreaked all sorts of havoc on my system!

We headed to FL on Tuesday and by Thursday, I was finally starting to feel ok again. I could finally get on the bike again which was a very good since I would be racing on it in 3 days.

I went to FL wanting to race but facing the possibility that I wouldn't be on the start line. In the end I did race and so on now to part two of this post....

(THE GROSS PART IT OVER)

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