Runner is forced to quit

April 29, 2013 by J-Wire
Read on for article
Richard Bowles, the Melbourne-based adventure runner who is attempting to run Israel’s National Trail has been forced to abandon his mission and is now in a Jerusalem hospital…but he has not given up hope of completing the attempt.
The 1000 km trail runs from the length of the country and Bowles was planning to add the run to a long list oflong runs he has already completed.
Vickie Saunders is Bowles’s girlfriend and had been a member of his support team.  She posted this report…

“We are dealing with some pretty heavy hearts (the whole Run INT Team), and badly infected and blistered feet (Richards!)…….and have had to take a break from the run. Rich ran 520km in just 6 days, before being admitted to hospital in Jerusalem where it was discovered that his foot was badly infected (he already had blisters that had turned into open wounds, but they were not the problem).
Richard Bowles in a Jerusalem hospital

Richard Bowles in a Jerusalem hospital

After having his foot drained, and antibiotics and strong painkillers prescribed, against doctors orders Rich was out on the trail again within the hour, and managed to run another 40km. The next day, yesterday, Rich ran 45km, the final 15km was with me as I needed to see what he was really going through. He was in agony the whole time with his foot turning inwards uncontrollably causing him to stumble and fall every few metres. I asked when it would be enough, he said he couldn’t allow himself to stop while he could still stand up.

Within 10km, he could barely stand, and I saw him break down as he stumbled down the dirt track, he screamed out in pain and sadness, it broke his heart, but he admitted he couldn’t continue. However, we stil had 5km to go, and they took about 2 hours to complete in his broken down state, I tried to hold him up each time he fell.
He said his body from the ankle up was completely strong and healthy, as was his mind, but the infection made it impossible for him to walk let alone run.
There is a chance that Rich will continue running, but as I need to get back home, the support crew will not include me.”

Bowles has made running difficult and long established trails a passion. Read more about him in a previous J-Wire report…

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