It Started As A Normal Run Ended In The ER


October, So far so good, had a little dizzy spell during the Hinson Lake 24 Hour Run. I was finishing lap 44, 66+ miles when I went into the food tent. I grabbed a bite to eat and upon exiting, I got a little dizzy.  That little spell scared me as I was 2 hours from home and alone.  That was enough to break my spirit and I dropped from the race, upon further review I believe it had nothing to do with Vertigo.  Running strong and looking for to JFK50.

8 July, Happy to report I have not had any recurrences. I’m running full effort again and I have gained back self confidence to run and not worry about what could happen. I do take a few precautions: I pay attention to my surroundings much more in regard to how close I run to traffic. I also carry my phone more, where before I limited carrying my phone to longer runs, now I carry it any time I run on paths or trails that may be considered even slightly remote.

25 June, it has been roughly  a week since I landed on the side of the road with my first bout of Vertigo. A first I did not know what had taken me down, I suspected it was dehydration. Since that run and the following ER trip I have learned a lot on this subject. What I’ve come to understand is that there is not much understood about what brings this condition on or abouts it cure. For me a week later and I’m feeling about 80% back to normal.

Most importantly is I’m alive, of sound mine, mostly sound body and I’m running again.

I went for my first run Sunday morning when I was still only operating at about 50% of my former self. I was still dizzy, but had enough control of my gait to run along some seldom used roads. I ran to feel normal, I ran to get back some control and I ran because I was ANGRY. I ran to prove to myself that I was still in control of my body, and thankfully God’s plan ageed.

I’m back to work, back to being somewhat my former self and back to logging miles. Funny the times I feel less of the side effects is when I’m running. So I believe I will keep it up.

Thanks for all the concern, I’m surprised at how many people reached out to me, prayed for me and wished me well.



It started as a normal day (17 June), a normal run and it ended with me in the emergency room.

It was hump day, my fifth running day in a training cycle that was going well. It was hot but not as hot as the four days prior. I planned to run 10 miles after work, I planned to run on Fort Lee to avoid the craziness of running city streets. I did not plan to be sitting in a heap along the side of the road wondering why the world was spinning out of control.


I had just finished up running a lap around the building my wife works in with an mid route extension out past the golf course to the gate and back. My garmin read just over 5 miles as I made a left hand turn to repeat the course.  I was feeling hot, but over all pretty good. My lap times were solid. As I crested a slight downhill my head felt light and my steps became erratic.

With each step forward my footfall became more unpredictable and unstable, I became dizzy, I had to stop and walk figuring this would pass. Little did I know this entrapment was just beginning as the world began to spin, I felt as if I was going to fall down I controlled my crash and sat along the edge of the road. Staring at my shoes trying to figure out what went wrong the world around me spun like an out of control amusement park ride stuck on the spin cycle.

I sat there about five minutes and slowly my world came back together. I figured the heat, the run and the fact I forgot to carry a water bottle added up to end my run early. More depressing was that a group of cars drove past me and no one showed enough concern to even ask if I was okay.

It must have been 5 minutes then I was finally able to gain enough strength and balance to make my way back to my car. That advancement would be short lived. I may have made it quarter of a mile and the world came apart again. I couldn’t walk, I couldn’t stand up and I went to the ground again. I only had enough strength to hold my head on my knees and keep my eyes shut as the world violently spun around me.  Something was wrong…

Finally I could hear the sounds of a car coming to a stop and someone asked if I was okay. Out of routine I called out that I thought I would be alright. Then I replied, I’m not sure… I asked for water, the concerned citizen told me he had none but that he would take me anywhere I needed to go. Then a second car stopped. I don’t remember much but I was put into a car drove to the DeCA building where the driver of the second car retrieved a bottle of water.  The world was still spinning, my mind was lost, my balance was gone, it was hard to focus on anything, I just wanted to get into my car turn on the AC and lie down.  The gentlemen and lady who helped me got me to my car, I promised I would not drive until I could control myself and my car and they left, or so I thought.

The lady who gave me the water made two more visits to my car making sure I was okay and that I had more water. She stated she was worried about me. I told I had felt better but that I was getting myself together and I was thankful for her concern. 30 minutes after going down I felt well enough to get myself home.

That night at home I had highs and some very lows until the point I knew I had to go to the hospital. The room spun, there where hot flashes, chills, violent moments of getting sick and times I could not control my balance. Whatever had its grips on me was not going to just let go.


A trip to the Emergency room, a test of my vitals, the nurse asking if my blood pressure is always that low, some blood tests, and an eye test.  Then the doctor asked his assistant, “did you see that.” I became concerned, what did they see.  Could the room please stop spinning. Another round of eye tests and he pronounced I had Vertigo.


Just what is Vertigo?  Vertigo – a whirling or spinning movement is a subtype of dizziness in which a patient inappropriately experiences the perception of motion (usually a spinning motion) due to dysfunction of the vestibular system. It is often associated with nausea and vomiting as well as a balance disorder, causing difficulties with standing or walking. 

There are no normal runs, embrace each one.  And if you see someone who may need help…pls stop. THANK YOU to those who helped me in my time of need.  I did not get your names…but I’m so very thankful…

6 thoughts on “It Started As A Normal Run Ended In The ER

  1. Rachel

    This is scary stuff! I’ve actually had this happen to me while running, but not to this degree. I pray you were wearing your RoadID!


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