, ,

It’s been a while since I’ve written.  Lots going on here in life.

I had proclaimed earlier this year that I had set a goal of running a half marathon a month.  Well, June went by and I didn’t run at all.  Zip.  Zilch.  Nada.  Zero.

Why is this?  Well, a couple of things happened.

1) I had a foot injury, really intense Plantar Fasciitis, which caused me to take a break and slow down.  I headed to my sports therapist on a regular basis and finally got better and felt ready to get back into the swing of things.

2)  Pityriasis Rosea…what?  Yes, Pityriasis Rosea, otherwise known as a really annoying and irritating skin condition.  If you’ve ever had this, you know what I mean.  It is so under researched, no one knows what it is caused by.  Some think it’s a virus, some think it’s caused by stress (I’m sure that’s what happened to me).  It is not contagious, so you don’t catch it or spread it to anyone.  It starts with a “herald” patch, which I thought was a bug bite.  Then it slowly starts to spread into a small red bumps all of over.  It usually sticks to the trunk (front and back), arms and legs.  Typically is stays off your face – thank goodness – but it was extremely uncomfortable and itchy for me.  There is nothing that can be done, medicine wise, to cure the rash.  It lasts between 6-12 weeks and once it’s gone, it’s as though you’ve never had it.

Lucky for me (sarcasm), I was on vacation when the rash really got started – about a week after I spotted the herald patch.  I ended up going to urgent care in Sedona, where they thought it was an allergic reaction, so they gave me a shot.  When that didn’t work, they prescribed me steroids and antibiotics.  Yeah…nothing worked.  Fortunately, I was able to forge through and enjoy our vacation, doing some hiking within the city and having a chance to visit the Grand Canyon (if you ever have a chance to go, I highly recommend it, it was AMAZING).

The top of our hike at Cathedral Rock in Sedona

The top of our hike at Cathedral Rock in Sedona

Getting some hiking done in the Gand Canyon.  The Pityriasis Rosea had spread on most of my body at this point so I covered up even though it was 90 degrees that day...

Getting some hiking done in the Gand Canyon. The Pityriasis Rosea had spread on most of my body at this point so I covered up even though it was 90 degrees that day…

Once we got home I went to my general practitioner and as soon as she saw it she diagnosed me with Pityriasis Rosea.  Basically, she said, there is nothing I could do, just wait it out.

Being the type of person to not take things lying down, I scoured internet forums to see what other people have done to at least get some relief from the itching.

Here are the things I found that worked for me:

1) Head and Shoulders.  Yes, the shampoo.  I used it as body wash and left it on for 5-10 minutes before rinsing off.  I think this was a BIG help.

2) Pure coconut oil.  Right out of the jar.  I slathered that on after the head and shoulders so my skin wouldn’t completely dry out.

3) I started amping up my vitamin intake.  Vitamin D, Vitamin C, Calcium and Milk Thistle.

4) Tanning bed.  Now, I am not one to EVER recommend to go to a tanning bed.  I’m a big believer in sunblock and keeping your skin healthy and wrinkle free, but the more I read, the more people said the tanning bed did wonders.  Off I went for no more than 5-7 minutes at a time.  Within less than a week, the spots started flaking.  Of course, when I told my doctor, she said she would not recommend the tanning bed, but did say sun exposure would help.  Since I looked like a leper, I didn’t want to tan in public, so the bed was the next best thing.  I covered my face with a towel and let the UV rays do their job.  THEY SURE DID.

After 2 weeks of doing all of these things regularly, the rash has gotten about 75% better.  I finally have been able to run again, but have to shower right after because the sweating makes the bumps angry.  Hopefully soon they will be completely gone and I can exercise without worry.

UPDATE:  I am now 7 weeks in, the itching is completely gone and the spots are now smooth and very faint.  Hoping in the next couple of weeks they will be completely gone.  I’ve been exercising again and I even wore a bikini with the faint spots and I didn’t feel like a complete leper!

I don’t have any half marathons scheduled for July and August and may have to keep it that way.  The next half marathon I have on the books is the Disneyland Half Marathon in September.  So, I have some time to get back into fighting shape.

QOTD: Have you every dealt with a big set back from your running?  How did you deal with it?

QOTD2:  Have you ever dealt with Pityriasis Rosea?  What steps did you take to manage it?