What to do in the absence of tweezers? Improvise. Matt Morris took this picture of my efforts to remove thorns and debris from a fresh set of elbow cuts (curse that Newnham mud!). Sue rightly insisted that I clean up the scrape, lest a blood infection cause all sorts of pain and grief . I’ve got a little form in that dept, having previously endured a blood infection with an infected blister after the New York Marathon in 2008  and my advice is definitely ‘DON’T GET ONE’. On really grimy land – in particular agricultural land or fomer industrial sites – it’s worth taking the time to clean up your wounds properly. I advise a stiff wire brush and a strip of leather to bite on. 🙂

The implement in question is a Leatherman Juice Xe6, handy for all sorts of running repairs including rudimentary first aid on exposed body parts. My capacity to crash is legendary, typified by the image below. In December 2011 – and for the second year on the trot – I received one of the least sought after club gongs at the JIF Christmas dinner (much to my dismay, in front of cycling luminaries and guests of honour, Geraint Thomas and Shane Sutton). “What doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger”. Thank you Mr Nietzsche, but if that were bloody true, I’d be one of the strongest riders on the planet.

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