According to “people with medical knowledge” or “common sense,” cardiovascular exercise is beneficial for human health.
It’s good for weight loss, strengthens the heart and lungs, may increase bone density, and provides some psychological benefits, because your body releases some pretty great chemicals when you exercise.
However, if you’re particularly dumb, particularly unlucky, both or me, you can self-inflict some pretty substantial pain just by doing simple cardio.
Roughly two months ago, while running, I began to feel a sharp pain in my right big toe.
“Ouch, that really hurts,” I thought to myself.
I proceeded to display why in any other time in recorded history, I would not live very long, because I did absolutely nothing about this sharp pain. In fact, what I did was worse than nothing, because I kept running for two more weeks. Eventually, running became unbearable. Every time my right foot hit the ground, a searing jolt emanating from right, big toe manifested itself in under-my-breath profanity.
I looked at my toe. It looked fine, a little red, but no obvious source of the pain. I looked a little more closely and Googled my symptoms.
After several minutes, I was able to rule out a couple of the Internet’s suggestions. The federal government had not implanted a chip in my toe recently, and I was reasonably confident it wasn’t toe cancer.
I did a little more research and looked at my toe a little more closely, and realized the very edge of my toenail had been pressed inward by my running shoes and was now growing into my toe.
The solution seemed pretty simple: I’d just cut the problem area of my self-induced ingrown toe nail and be good as new. However, it turns out weeks of neglect and exacerbating behavior leaves a sore area of the body in much worse pain.
I decided to gobble some Ibuprofen P.M., wait until I felt sort of drowsy, but before I could feel my brain floating in its own hazy cerebrospinal fluid. Then, I would use nail clippers to fix the problem.
At this point, my plan sort of veered from garden variety hygiene toward Civil War-era surgery.
I had to snip pretty deep to get rid of the problem portion of the nail. Despite multiple clips, it was still attached to my body. Later research indicates it was probably the nail bed that was keeping things together.
With several more clips and a tug, the toe nail was finally gone, but I was now the proud owner of a bloody stump, so things weren’t exactly as intended.
I’ve consistently used hydrogen peroxide, cleaned my foot and gone barefoot as often as possible to allow my wound to heal, but it turns out my work schedule and the amount of event coverage that involves standing is less than ideal for healing.
To make matters worse, I’ve also managed to drop a significant number of objects on my toe and accidentally kick a good number of inanimate objects. Although, this has allowed me to deduce my subconscious wants me dead.
To make matters worst, I’ve continued to run this entire time.
Still, almost eight weeks later, I’m finally starting to make progress, and my toe almost never hurts anymore even if it isn’t 100 percent.
However, the whole process has ranged from very painful to slightly obnoxious. For this reason, I encourage everyone to remain as sedimentary during the day as possible.
Hopefully, someday, we can all be sentient gelatinous masses. Our only movement will be the quiver of our infirm bodies caused by the gentle breeze rifling past us as we ride our Rascal Scooters to Golden Corral.
Until then, I recommend steel-toe boots for all daily activities and a firm no-running stance.