Last Wednesday, on my way to a mountain bike session, two “soi“ dogs ran after me and one bit me on my leg before I could get away. That’s when the nightmare started. I know what open wounds mean in Thailand (I have fallen from a motorbike, and I had elbow cuts on my forehead after some Muay Thai fights), but I never knew, until now, what a dog bite can be.
After 6 hours of hospitals, cleaning the wound, putting lots of injections around the wound (there is nothing more painful than this, believe me) and intramuscular ones, I finally went back home with an open wound. And all that pain I went through, and the pain that came after, was nothing compared to the feeling of defeat. How can this happen to me 3 weeks before the XTERRA World Championships in Maui! Just now, when my training was going perfect, I was feeling strong, I was swimming faster, I finally was going on technical trails without falling on the mountain bike, etc.!!!! I just felt depressed. And that feeling continued to increase once the weather got better (perfect for outdoor sports) and I had to be stuck on my bed because if I walked just a few steps, my leg was all swollen and the pain was incredible.
Every day I am visiting the hospital, every day is a torture: draining of the open wound, cleaning, cutting on other places where there is infection, having muscle cramps and body pain, taking medication, having side effects of the medication… It’s been 5 days and I am still with an open wound! Every day the doctor tells me that maybe tomorrow if it gets better it can be stitched and closed for healing. Every day he tells me “not today, still too much infection”. But there is something different lately. My mindset.
I am a fighter. Because of my Muay Thai background, I know how to come up stronger from difficult situations. I have a strong mind, and I never give up. That’s what’s I say to myself every day I wake up, every time I think that I need to train, every time I have to go to the torture chamber (a.k.a. emergency room at the hospital), every time I have to stay in bed because if I move too much, it just gets worst. Now I am focusing on doing everything I can to make it heal as quicker as possible. I know I might not be able to train these weeks before the race, but I am going to do the race. I might not be as fast as if I was properly trained, but my mind and heart will be stronger than ever.
I am definitely a dog person, my French bulldog Tiger is my son, and he is always next to me, so I have no bad feelings towards that other crazy dog. And as clichéd as it may sound: “Everything happens for a reason”.
About the Author
Marcela is a Nutritionist and Dietitian, with a specialisation in Sports Nutrition. She earned her undergraduate degree in Human Nutrition at the University of Costa Rica in 2008, then completed her master’s degree in Human Movement and Integrative Health with emphasis on Athletes and Sports Nutrition in the Universidad Nacional de Costa Rica in 2010. Marcela dedicated the past ten years to Muay Thai and holds the WBC Asia World Championship.