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Nic Tinworth (Rebuilding one’s body and mind post brain surgery)

6 September 2018

As we are trying our best to accomplish various things in life like climbing up the career ladder or trying to run the next ultra marathon or planning the next awesome vacation, we sometimes tend to take life for granted. We assume we will continue to be hale and healthy, we assume that nothing will rock the boat of our lives until someday, unfortunately, some unexpected event does indeed rock the boat big time and then it becomes up to us to not just recover from it but to come back stronger. And, this is a lot easier said than done.


Today on the podcast I have with me my friend Nic Tinworth whose reputation precedes him. He is a well known figure in the Hong Kong Trail Running community. He is also the Race Director of some popular races in Hong Kong like the Country of Origin race in Lantau. All was going well for Nic until one day, he was suddenly admitted to hospital for mysterious reasons. I'll let him tell the story but before anything else, I want to thank Nic for willing to do this podcast with us. It's not easy to talk about such an experience much less to share it with so many listeners of this podcast. He is probably too humble to admit this but I know that he is doing this because he is a very kind person who wants to help people in any way he can. So, first of all, thank you Nic and welcome to the podcast!


Before any of this:

  1. Introduce yourself in say 3 sentences or less

  2. Talk about your ultra experience

  3. What lead you to hiking / running?

  4. When did you start hiking / running?

  5. Talk about some of your races and running adventures

  6. Talk about the races for which you a director

  7. How solid was your fitness like in general?


The experience: 

  1. When did you have the feeling that something could potentially be wrong with you physically?

  2. What was the feeling like to know that something might be wrong?

  3. Talk about the experience of having been sent to the hospital

  4. What did it feel like to not know what could be wrong with you?

  5. Were you afraid?

  6. Walk us through the decision to do the biopsy - how difficult was it to make it?

  7. How painful was the "biopsy" experience?

  8. Talk about the procedure

  9. While recovering you sent out frequent updates of your progress. How important was it to engage with the community during the process?

  10. Which aspect of this ordeal was the hardest on you?

  11. Is there a bright side to this whole experience? If so, what is it?

  12. How did you deal with all of this mentally? Did you have negative thoughts?

  13. Contrasting this to the hardest 100km race you've done, how much harder was this physically and on the body and the mind?

  14. How did the biopsy go?


Road to recovery:

  1. You had to learn to walk better again after the brain biopsy. What did it feel like to know about this?

  2. Talk about the road to recovery. What does that look like and what's the prognosis?

  3. When do you think you'd be ready for another 100km run?

  4. Can you name a few people who really helped you get through this?


  1. What lessons did you glean from this experience?

  2. What were the most grueling points during this whole ordeal? How did you cope with it?

  3. Was there some element of dietary influence in you suffering from this?

  4. Were there those "why me?" times? If so, how did you deal with them? How did you deal with negativity in general?

  5. Is there anything in this experience that can help you become a better person / runner?

  6. Knowing what you know now, how could you have handled this experience better?

  7. Is there anything I should have asked but did not?

Nic Tinworth (Rebuilding one’s body and mind post brain surgery)
00:00 / 1:17:39
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