Thursday, January 13, 2011

I'm a Celebrity

My story was published in the local newspaper. The reporter, a columnist in the weekly in the small town where I almost died(!), did a very nice story on my "event."

This story ran in November, and a followup ran in December.

Since my "event," I've been very emotional -- or more likely, I don't have the ability any more to suppress my emotions. I get choked up whenever I read this story.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


what is the logo on the side of this shoe supposed to be?

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

I am the luckiest man alive

In the summer of 2010, I decided to run my first multi-sport event. Since my bicycle is a hybrid on- and off-road bike, I chose an off-road duathlon with a running course in a local park and a cycling course on adjacent unused railroad beds.

I’d been commuting on my bike for about a year, and I had been extending the distance and increasing the difficulty of my rides since the weather allowed me to ride again.

I don’t remember anything about the day of the race. I don’t remember getting up, whether I ate breakfast, or any of my morning preparation for the race. The race was 2 miles running, 10 miles biking, then another 2 miles running. At some time during the second running portion of the race (I’m not sure how far I’d gone), a small piece of cholesterol, around which a clot had formed, blocked the circumflex artery in my heart, and I went onto cardiac arrest.

As I lay on the ground, other runners stopped to help me. One of the first people to stop was Sarah, a Registered Nurse, who had worked in the Cardiology at a local hospital. She and Jamie, another runner who was trained in CPR, began working on me. A third competitor, a Physician’s Assistant (also named Sarah), assisted in the CPR. Another runner was carrying his cell phone, and called 911. Sarah called for an Automatic External Defibrillator, and shortly, a Sheriff’s Deputy arrived on a small vehicle with one. I wasloaded onto the vehicle and taken to an ambulance.

At the hospital, I was taken into the Cardiac Cath Lab. My ID had been removed at some point, the emergency personnel handed it over to the Emergency Department staff. My identity had to be confirmed and my family contacted.

The social worker in the ED noticed that my shoes had mud caked on their soles, so she immediately began checking trail races in the area. She confirmed that I had been entered in the race and called my house. My wife was not home at first, and my son decided not to answer the phone. The hospital staff tried several times to contact my wife, and when they were about ready to send a police car to my house (which would have absolutely terrified my son), my wife came home and answered the call.

At the Cardiac Cath Lab, my body temperature was cooled to 32 degrees Celsius, and two stents were inserted into my artery. Two days later, I woke up, with no memory of anything that had happened. I'm in cardiac rehab now, working my way back to where I was. I'm currently the healthiest person in rehab. Also the luckiest.