In Ocean Rescue Run

Tough Decision

Dave made it to Oregon today!!! This was a huge milestone for him as the California coast was the longest portion of the Ocean Rescue Run. Big gains, yet a tough decision lay ahead.

May 22nd, 2016 (Day 35)
total distance completed: 57.96 km / 36.01 miles

start: between Crescent City and False Klamath, CA (in the Del Norte Coast Redwoods State Park)
stop: Brookings, OR
ran by: Smith River and the CALIFORNIA/OREGON state border!!!
total distance achieved to date: 1549.10 km / 962.57 miles

Oregon was a welcome change and felt like the perfect next phase of the run. Just knowing that he made it this far helped re-energize Dave. Dave has an interview with a reporter in Brookings booked for tomorrow and is looking forward to speaking with someone from Oregon. It is a great feeling when a reporter follows up on Dave’s story. We know that Dave’s endeavour and cause are important and deserve attention; it is encouraging to get the word out and find fellow supporters.

May 23rd, 2016 (Day 36)
total distance completed: 51.42 km / 31.95 miles

start: Brookings, OR
stop: just south of Bandon, OR
ran by: Port Orford and Gold Beach
total distance achieved to date: 1600.52 km / 994.52 miles

Today was hotter than the last few days and Dave had to contend with a headwind for quite a bit of the time. I went out after lunch and did a portion of the route with him which was eye opening for me. By the time I left the van, met up with him, and got back to the van I had only been going for about 70 minutes. Having to pay attention to the traffic going by (some huge trucks), the headwind and the heat is a lot more to deal with than I thought. At lunch we discussed how the run had gone so far – if it was harder/easier than he had thought, and what it was like compared to the 4-month long, length of Africa cycling trip he had done previously. It was interesting to hear his answers and to know a bit more about how he has felt doing the run. Get the scoop – answers to come in Dave’s next interview!

May 24th, 2016 (Day 37)
total distance completed: 53.62 km  / 33.32 miles

start: just south of Bandon, OR
stop: Coos Bay, OR
total distance achieved to date: 1654.14 km / 1027.83 miles

We came across a really amazing organization today that is located in the town of Bandon. While trying to make contact with newspapers in the towns of Bandon, Coos Bay, and Reedsport, a couple reporters asked if we knew about the organization Washed Ashore: neither of us did. Washed Ashore is ‘a non-profit, community-based organization with a mission of educating and creating awareness about marine debris and plastic pollution through art.’ We know that in order to achieve our initiatives at Friendly Drifter it is crucial to have insight into how other organizations operate and work to achieve their goals. As Amy Poehler says, “Watching great people do what you love is a good way to start learning how to do it yourself.” There are many great individuals and organizations out there. We managed to get in touch with a director at Washed Ashore who was in Washington DC presenting some of their work.  They are making great strides in bringing awareness and education to the masses about plastic waste and our oceans. We have planned to meet at a future date to get an inside look at their programs and perhaps collaborate!

May 25th, 2016 (Day 38)
total distance completed: 46.36 km  / 28.81 miles

start: Coos Bay, OR
stop: Reedsport, OR
ran by: North Bend
total distance achieved to date: 1700.50 km / 1056.64 miles

Dave decided (yay!) that we would stay in a motel tonight in order to have access to a bath so he could soak his muscles and relax properly. The van is really great and perfect for our needs but it is a small space and unfortunately doesn’t have a shower/tub. I was more than ecstatic about having a break from the van for a night. Of course the running aspect of this trip is difficult but there are other aspects to get used to such as being away from home, having the same gruelling routine day after day, and not having access to all of the daily luxuries (bath, shower, space) that I am used to at home. It is however, great to see how little you actually need and you start to quickly appreciate the small pleasures more. Dave’s distance was a little shorter today due to the fact that one of his toes was quite painful and he was experiencing some swelling on one foot.

May 26th (Day 39), May 27th (Day 40) & May 28th (Day 41), 2016

An unfortunate occurrence interrupted the run on these days. Dave mentioned on May 24th that his big toe on his left foot was painful. I took a look at it and it was red and swollen. We both remembered that a couple of weeks ago Dave had an small cut there due to the chaffing from his running shoe. At the time we didn’t think much of it and I treated it by cleaning and drying it, applying a topical antibiotic and covering it while Dave was running. On May 26th I suggested we go to the clinic. We did and Dave was sent home with 2 antibiotics to treat a possible infection. The doctor said it could also be a stress fracture but his x-ray showed no conclusive results of this. Dave took 24 hours to rest and tried to run again on May 26th but with no luck. We revisited the hospital again as things were not improving but were sent home again with no re-assessment; the doctor confirmed it was an infection but said that oral antibiotics would be sufficient. Dave tried to continue running the next day hoping the antibiotics would clear the infection as he ran, however, the pain and swelling were too much for him to even walk. We spent another day hoping that the antibiotics just needed a little time but his condition continued to deteriorate.

Message from Dave:

“A tough decision needed to be made at this point and it was a crucial one. The antibiotics had no effect after three days of taking them and my condition was if anything getting worse. After reaching out to a friend of mine who is a doctor in Vancouver, Dr. Nic Lendvoy, and much deliberation, coming home was an option I started seriously considering. I want to take this time to thank Dr. Lendvoy as he played a vital role in making the correct decision to come home and I’m thankful he reached out to me before the start of the run offering his help if needed. There were a lot of factors involved in making this decision but ultimately without knowing what the injury truly was I felt that it was best to have my condition treated at home where I could rest and recover. We estimated that the length of time I would need to heal from this would be at least a week once diagnosed, treated, and working up to running again. Unfortunately with this amount of rehab time and still having to run for another 17 days I wouldn’t have sufficient time to finish the run and start working at my seasonal job as planned. Working at my seasonal job affords me the ability and time to spend time in Indonesia and work on Friendly Drifter. We considered all the different ways we could still make the run work at this time but none made sense. I feel very disappointed that this is the outcome at this time. It is difficult when you set a goal for yourself and uncontrollable circumstances keep you from attaining it. Kate and I are still together which is a feat in itself; we are both arriving home safe which is all we could really hope for.

I will be continuing the run and completing it as I have set out to do; this setback is a temporary one. Unfortunately I only had a small window in which to complete the run as it was planned. As work is vital in allowing me to commit my time and energy to Friendly Drifter, it is a priority. I will be resuming and completing the run at the conclusion of the mining season in the fall.

I want to thank everybody for their support and for following us on the first part of this journey. Your comments, likes, shares, and posts all helped motivate me to keep going on a daily basis and I look forward to having all of you along when I finish. I want to thank Choices Markets  in South Surrey, especially Chris Butler, for providing us with sufficient food, drinks, and supplements for the run; without this I would have incurred large personal expenses.

Please continue to follow us on our blog and social media. We will be providing updates about plans for the completion of the run as well as showcasing the various contacts that we made on this first 2/3rd’s of the journey.

Total days: 38
Total distance ran: 1700.50 km / 1056.64 miles
Total rest days taken: 5
Number of marathons run: 40.5
Longest day: 62.76 km / 39.00 miles
Shortest day: 10.00 km / 6.21 miles (on crutches)
Average distance considering run days only: 51.53 km / 32.02 miles
Average distance including rest days: 44.75 km / 27.80 miles

Number of blisters at one time: 11
Lost toenails: 3
Number of baby wipes: ~150
Number of bandaids: ~200

To raise awareness on the effects of plastic waste in our oceans and funds for waste management solutions in Raja Ampat, Friendly Drifter Co-Founder David Pennington began the Ocean Rescue Run on April 18th, 2016 at the US/Mexican border and will end in Vancouver, Canada. The route for the run along the Pacific Coast Highway was chosen to connect ocean coasts, remove international boundaries and bring attention to this global issue.  “Some of our western technologies, plastic culture and production have had serious negative impacts on the environment, all over the world.  I feel we have a responsibility to create solutions for areas ill-equipped to deal with the waste issues.” states David. The Ocean Rescue Run is approximately 2700 km / 1740 miles. If you have the means and wish to participate please visit the Go Fund Me website.  Additional details and more information on our program can be located on our Home and Participate pages.  News and articles can be found on the Media link. Thank you!

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