ST. CHARLES, MO – A St. Charles man faced with a life-changing diagnosis will embark on a challenge that will push his body to the limit. As the sun rises over the Colorado mountains Saturday morning (Aug. 18), Matthew Porter will begin running and will not stop for nearly 30 hours.
For two years, Porter has been training for the Leadville Trail 100, an annual ultramarathon that will take him on trails and dirt roads near Leadville, CO through the heart of the Rocky Mountains.
Three and a half years ago, a doctor ordered an MRI to look into some tension Porter was feeling in his back. That is when the doctor first noticed signs of Multiple Sclerosis.
On a scale from one to ten, Porter says most days his pain is at a two or three. On the bad days, it is closer to a seven or eight. Sometimes he experiences uncontrollable tingling from his fingertips to the back of his skull. Other times, his chest muscles contract intensely into what he says people in the M.S. community call the “M.S. hug.”
Good luck to Matthew Porter who is going to be running in the Leadville 100 Ultramarathon. It will be quite a challenge for him going from elevation of 577 feet in St. Charles, Missouri to an elevation of 10,152 feet in Leadville Colorado. Leadville has the highest elevation of an incorporated city in the United States. Leadville’s elevation is so high that you can’t boil water there.
According to the National MS Society as of October of 2016, there were 14,420 people in Colorado living with Multiple Sclerosis and 11,101 living with the disease in Missouri.