Problem: Acute Tendinitis in right Achilles brought on by over training in a new model of sandals.

I was running in new version of a sandal that was made by my alternate/backup fabricator and after 2.5 hours, just before one of the back straps came loose (he was later fired), I began to change my stride to try an relieve the chafing from new friction points. The chafing turned into blisters on my left foot and as so often happens, my other foot changed its cadence out of sympathy. So somewhere along the way my right foot began hyper-extending  the Achilles tendon.

Solution: Downtime. Ice (ice cubes in a small bucket of water) alternated with heat (hot water in a small bucket of water) 3 times per day. And just as importantly, I employ the anti-inflammatory herb Arnica; a herb that grows wild in Michoacan. I drink 24 ounces of tea made from the herb per day and add the discarded leaves and twigs to the hot water that I then soak my right heel and tendon in.

Results: In 3 days time I’ve gone from a crippled like limping state to very mild-discomfort. I expect to start running again in 2 more days; just to be on the safe side.

Warning: Read up on Arnica before you use it. Some say you shouldn’t drink it as it can cause heart palpitations and dizziness. The locals here in Michoacan drink it and I have found that drinking 2 X 12 oz glasses of the tea gives me a caffeine kind of buzz. It’s definitely a tasty herb whose flavor reminds me of Chamomile tea.

Testimonial: James Jessop, a gringo passing through Michoacan on his way to Ecuador, is the guy that told me about it. He did a face plant onto concrete a few years ago (coincidentally here in Sahuayo) when the stem on his bicycle handle snapped; resulting in a bunch of injuries mostly to the face like 3 snapped front teeth, a broken nose, and I forget  what else. Someone brought him a 2 Liter coke bottle of Arnica tea and advised him to both drink it and apply the infusion to his badly swollen face. Over the course of his 2 day stay in the hospital the facial swelling was reduced to almost nothing.