The Death and Dying of Toenails


We are in the beginning phases of training for our first 100 mile race. We tried this a few years ago but with northern winters, a 2 year old, and doctoral classes, it was too much. This time around, we have already registered for the race, we live in Florida, the 2 year old is now 5, and one of us is finished with school. Our plan should work this time around!

In the last few weeks, we have run the majority of a 12 hour and a 6 hour race. During these races, we have learned many things about better preparing ourselves for longer distances. One of those lessons is that of a larger toe box! Why, because your toenails die!

First, the ends of your toes feel sore.

Then, your toenails turn red. Then black, then white.

Then you pop that stuff and watch the goo flood out from under your toenails. Apparently this smells awful…according to my husband.

Then you wait for everything to dry up.

You cut off the toenail so it doesn’t snag on sock.

Three weeks later, you see you have a new toenail and cycle repeats!

It’s all part of the price you pay to be able to be among the few that call themselves ultra-runners!

I’m not alone in this. There is a woman who had her toenails removed because she was tired of this process. Check out her story…if the have the stomach for graphic pictures and video!



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