Friday, April 17, 2009

PA school

(This photo has nothing to do with this post, but I love this shot (courtesy of le Buzz himself) from the Flatiron scramble series this past fall. We all had La Sportiva's, which are the BEST shoes for running the Flatirons series. Ava though had onher comfy wool knicker-socks and couldn't have been cuter!)

A couple weeks I got a call from the program director one of the physician assistant programs I'd interviewed at this past winter. 1.5 years ago, I'd picked up where I'd left off during college with medicine and biology and hammered out the remaining pre-requisite sciences to apply to PA schools..and I got the call I'd wanted for so long!
For those who know me, professionally it's been a long haul to decide what I want to be when I grow up. I was an EMT and WFR for several years, rode on an ambulance, and used wilderness medicine often in the experiential education courses I led. I taught at a bunch of different schools from public and private to Outward Bound courses, and, besides maintaining CPR certification, left the emergency medicine side of me behind in the 1990's. The past 7 years have been, for the most part besides medical and classroom experience, written off as a loss in terms of professional development; I worked as a footwear testing coordinator for Salomon, then worked in residential real estate (which was at best mildly satisfying). But for running and adventure racing and general adventuringI have had a blast and I did have excellent support from several companies, notably GoLite (, so there was a financial incentive to put the hours in everyday to training and race focus.

Anyway.. studying medicine and its applications to public health is where I am headed and am happy as my dog rolling on his back in the dirt. They had 1400 applicants for 40 spots; lucky me.
Now we are heading into massive school loans and transition, it will be a long hard road (and I still will race trail and ultras on some of the country's best dirt), but we'll get through it all. It may be harder on Ellen than me. Through the last seven years Ellen has been a SAINT through my job turns in the road and now I am dragging her and Ava further West..thank you Ellen and Ava! School itself will be even more challenging than getting into school, but I am ready and focused. Now those loan apps..

From the Touro Website, the program mission and curriculum. Touro University ( is on Mare Island in San Pablo Bay in Vallejo, CA. The Marin trails are only 20 minutes away!

"The Joint MSPAS/MPH Curriculum is an integrated, graduate-level curriculum that consists of instruction and clinical experiences in both the medical and public health disciplines. The program is 32 months in length (8 academic sessions) in which the first four sessions are didactic (pre-clinical). The clinical year spans 54 weeks (sessions five – seven) and students return to campus for their eighth and final, post-rotation academic session. Session 8 coursework consists of mostly public health courses and one physician assistant summative course. Graduates of the program receive a Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies and a Master of Public Health. As a physician assistant, graduates are eligible for licensure to practice in all 50 states and Washington, DC. The Master of Public Health degree prepares the graduate by developing public health knowledge and principles including disease prevention, health promotion, epidemiology, biostatistics, health care administration, and research study and design. The combined curriculum prepares graduates to better understand the link between an individual's health and their environment. It is with this foundation that the program’s mission is founded upon.
Year 1 Session I August – December Basic Science Foundations/Principles of Pharmacology Anatomy w/Lab Microbiology/Laboratory Medicine Biostatistics Behavioral and Social Aspects of Public Health
Session II: January – April Clinical Medicine I Clinical Applications I w/Lab Pharmacology I Health Education and Promotion Medical Ethics Epidemiology
Session III: May – August Clinical Applications II Pharmacology II Clinical Medicine II Behavioral Medicine Program Evaluation & Needs Assessment Health Disparities & Community Organizing
Year 2 Session IV: August - December Pediatrics/Geriatrics Emergency Medicine Pharmacology III Clinical Medicine III Clinical Applications III Surgical and Clinical Skills w/Lab Research Methods
Session V-VII: January – January Public Health Field Experience Family Practice (12 weeks) Internal Medicine OB/GYN Emergency Medicine Surgery Pediatrics Elective (With the exception of Family Practice, each of the rotations are six-weeks in length for a total of 54 weeks)
Year 3 Session VIII: January – April MSPAS Summative Course MPH Capstone Health Services Administration Environmental Health
Internal Medicine?? What's that?

Sunday, April 5, 2009

American River 50

Here is the very quick and dirty from me.
What a rough day out there.
1) It helps to train on the black stuff if you want to perform on the black stuff.
2) Not good to race in 7 oz Mizunos on black stuff if you got them 1 week before the race.
3) Ibuprofen. I should have carried some as it completely rejuvenated my trashed quads at mile 40.
4) They added 2+ miles to the course this year, maybe with more and with more technical/rocky single track than last year according those who have run it in the past, hence the slower overall times.
5) Max King ran strong considering he was 30-something place at the World XC race ...last weekend!
6) The NorCal ultra running scene is excellent and I would recommend running out there when you get the chance. I'll be running more out there for sure as my little brood is moving out there this summer!
I'll try to post something more this week..results are at..