Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The Fungus Among Us

Name the band with that album name.

So it's about to get real personal. Slash maybe a little gross. If this is your first time reading this blog, I apologize...

I have been running a lot. Therefore, also sweating a lot. Because it's hot, you know.

Sweat = moisture. Moisture = breeding ground for fungus. That's right. My name is Kirstin, and I have a fungus.

More specifically, I was diagnosed with ringworm today. Ringworm is not a parasite. It is a fungus. And it can create a distinct circular pattern, like so:
Oh hey, that's my love handle...
It also goes by the names of Athlete's Foot and Jock Itch. Yuck. I fortunately only have it on my stomach and back, most likely from my sports bra and running tank. The nurse practitioner said they see a lot of it around this time of the year, especially among active people. So that is one official con of physical activity. Score: Fungus = 1, Kirstin = 0.

So I will be hanging out with my anti-fungal cream, washing every clothing item, towel, and bedsheet, and avoiding coming into any skin-to-skin contact with others for a little bit. Including the cats - they can get ringworm too. And in cats, it can create circular bald patches. The last thing I want is a funny looking cat.

You might be thinking "Kirstin, that's nasty." Yes, in fact it is. According to the sheet I got from the doctor, as well as the Mayo Clinic web site, here are some things you can do to avoid ringworm yourself:

  • Shower immediately after working out. Don't hang out in your sweaty gym clothes watching tv for a few hours. Basically practice good personal hygiene. Mmmk?
  • Avoid excessive sweating. Good luck this time of year.
  • Don't share towels, clothes, etc. - Um, yuck.
  • Avoid skin-to-skin contact with others with ringworm. That just sounds dirty. 
  • Wash your clothes/towels regularly and make sure they are dry.
  • If you participate in contact sports (football, rugby, wrestling), you are taking a big risk...
  • The same is true if you live in a warm, humid climate. Sorry Florida. You sound like trouble. 
  • Don't wear your hair in a wet ponytail all the time. Oops.
  • Don't share hats, combs, brushes. Also important for avoiding head lice. 
  • Avoid tight shoes/underwear that rub/irritate your skin. Wear cotton underwear and socks.
  • Carefully dry your feet after bathing/swimming. "Apply antiperspirant to your feet if they perspire excessively." This feels weird. 
  • If your pet is missing patches of fur, it probably needs to go to the vet. Oh, and maybe don't touch the pet or their bald patches...

Okay, that is enough advice. Sorry if I grossed you out. I am kind of disgusted with myself right now. And I'm pretty sure that Chris was making a gagging noise when he asked me if it was contagious. Grown up cooties. But hey, at least now you know how to identify ringworm. Right?

On a happier note, don't forget about my second blog giveaway, the Cupcake Decorating Kit. Check out this post for more details, and get your entries in today! If there is one thing to take your mind off skin conditions, it's cupcakes. Am I right?!

Did you get the band name? Answer = Incubus


  1. One of my friends just got this! It took forever to go away :( Hope yours goes away faster!

  2. Kirstin Leih, uncensored. :) Oh, the secrets of a runner.

  3. Meg - I hope so too!

    Becca - And slightly slap happy today, I think. Looking forward to reading about all of the things you think runners should know.


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