How do you deal with potential disaster to a DREAM project?

Robert Dickison

Well here I am lying in a hospital bed awaiting surgery on an aneurysm behind my left knee three weeks after running the Gold Coast 100km Ultra and three weeks before I have the opportunity to be part of an amazing team in the 96km Kokoda Challenge probably one of the toughest team events in Australia, and the only distance I can cover at this time is to limp the 10steps to the toilet and back, not a very encouraging situation I have to admit.

How did all this happen, well after a night training run of 17km with the Kokoda team members on Friday night, a good little blow out at Main Beach park run with Bernice on Saturday morning I decided to focus on some bathroom renovations on Sunday morning and while fitting some handles to the new vanity I felt some discomfort in my lower left leg, so moved my body to get more comfortable with the result of severe pain around the left ankle and no matter how I tried to move it to try and relieve it the pain just got worse and the foot became frozen and would not move and then just went white and cold with no circulation so Bernice took one look  could not find any pulse in the foot and called an ambulance to get me to the emergency department at the hospital as fast as possible.

After arriving and being spoken to by a consultant it became clear that this decision by Bernice was critical in my recovery because when they found the cause and decided that a clot had blocked the blood supply and if it had not been treated within 6hrs the damage would have been irreparable, not a good outcome for a runner.

So the next move is a bypass behind the left knee to eliminate the aneurysm and the danger of any more clots moving around and though there was another one discovered behind the right knee, at a meeting with the team this morning they have decided that this one, because of the extreme distances being run has in fact cleared itself and has good flow so will only be monitored.

The upside the day before the op is that all going well I will not be able to do Kokoda but should be capable of running ultras in a few weeks as long as I handle the healing process correctly and this means that with a few adjustments Project 75 will continue.



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