I'm Randy Mouri and this blog is about my quest to be an official finisher in the Race Across AMerica (RAAM), the toughest endurance race in the world. It's over and I became an official solo finisher in 11 days, 1 hour and 13 minutes! We continue to raise money and awareness on behalf of Habitat for Humanity of Northern Virginia (Habitat NoVa). If you would like to make a donation to Habitat NoVa, please visit my page on Habitat’s site. Endless thanks to our sponsors and all the folks that have made such generous contributions. Team Mouri would not have been able to travel so comfortably, which certainly may have changed the outcome of the race.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Day 17; Almost there

Well thank goodness for the willingness to try anything to help out a bad situation. I'm speaking of the saddle sores (SS) of course, which started early on in the tour. Most riders tend to use the standard Chamois Cream to reduce friction spots, etc, which cause saddle sores. It never seems to be consistent with me. Sometimes certain things work better with different styles of shorts. I thought I had found the perfect pair with the Gore Power Shorts, but the extreme heat was not something that I could not replicate prior to the tour. I obtained some prescription medication from another rider, which was a strong dose of cortizone and some bag balm (if you don't ask, I won't tell.) So for the next couple of days, it was cortizone and Boudreux's (sp?) Butt Paste at night d then cortizone an hour prior to the bag balm and then Chamois cream on the shorts. This routine worked for a while. I tried to swap out saddles with a spare that I brought along, but this was worse, so I switched back to my standard, cheap Bontrager saddle. I went and purchased my own cortizone 10 from a local CVS and some Lanacane for emergency numbing situations that I would use as a last resort. Soon after passing through the cooler climates the heat began to rise and the SS became an issue once again. It was recommended to change shorts for different pressure areas, but all of my shorts were of similar model, since they had worked so well in training. So I purchased a pair of the PAC shorts to try them out. They felt wonderful and I purchased another pair. After a couple of days they weren't working any longer, so now I reverted to the double shorts. It gives a little more cushion and it allows the shorts to slide back and forth between one another and not rub your skin. Many of the riders say they have gone through endless combinations of shorts to find the perfect set. Some will even turn the shorts inside out so the pad isn't against your skin. At any rate, the double short worked for two days. The second day was the day that my shorts felt like they were on fire. So it was time to go with the emergency cream. In my mind you never want to numb an area that you use on a regular basis, unless it's an emergency...and this was an emergency! I was able to make it through that day, but had serious thoughts of how I would continue. So I asked around a bit more and it appeared that I had exhausted all of my resource. One of the RAAM veterans, Harold Trease, thought that the double short caused too much heat build up and that a regular routine of standing out of the saddle would keep blood flowing and help heal the area. Susan Notorangelo suggested powder early on, but I had tried that in training and it didn't work well for me. This was another day and another situation, so I thought what could it hurt. So I went back to the single short and tried powder (Bonds Medicated Powder), which you can mix with baby powder. This has been getting me through thus far with 2 more days to go. So it's nice to know of so many options, but it's best to avoid this issue all together (if you can). Hope this more detailed report on my issues may give you other options to think about, if you're ever in a similar situation.

We're in Elkins, WV and will be traveling via 33 through Harrisonburg onto Stanardsville where we will turn onto 230 and make our way to Orange via 231s to 20e. Perhaps not the best randonneuring route, but it will get us all home.

More photos were posted I'll add captions later.


Gina said...

Hang in there Randy! Wish I could be there to cheer you all in, but will be playing chauffeur instead. It sounds like an amazing trip, albeit very trying with the SS, but I can't wait to hear the full story. Be safe these last miles!

Elena said...

Ride hard to the end - we know you will! Jeff & I are with you (in spirit) at the finish line. Be safe and see you soon. Love, Jeff & Elena