Pain and Voodoo and Life

It has been a week of senses.

Since finishing the UTMB course with the Salomon Frenchies totally elated, I have had the most intense pain in both of my shoulders and both of my ankles. It has been strange. I didn’t really do anything to any of them. They just hurt. A lot! It could have been many things…running in the snow, not rested enough, different shoes, too much mileage, stress? I don’t know, but what I did know is that I hurt.

I just happened to ‘bump’ into an extremely in tuned character who could see I needed help. It is amazing when you have open eyes and an open heart who you bump into. So I was introduced to resistance stretching And what a journey I have been on. It has been extremely eye-opening…and I am not even going to try to begin to explain…see this website, but really it is something you will just have to try. I am still in pain, but I have learnt to accept that and try to see why I am in pain, just to let the pain take over and get better. It is moving slowly up my legs and hopefully soon it will disappear.

Then only 24hours ago I set off with Kilian Jornet and Stephane Brosse on their journey across the Mt Blanc Massif It was a stunning night…well1am. The sky was clear and full of stars. We set off at a blistering pace considering they were attempting 8 summits, 9000m+ in 22 or so hours. I stopped to wave them off as we took one last look at the bright stars.

After making the call to stop at a hut over night due to snow conditions and high winds they started again in the next morning. It was after about 5hours that Stephane, who was in front, stood on an unstable cornice and fell to his death. Kilian is safe, but distraught, obviously.

Today I learnt of this sad news while walking up to the summit of Mont Joly. It over looks the Mt Blanc Massif with stunning and endless views. And also to the spot where I wished the boys a safe journey. Stephane will now stay there to roam free. It was covered in fabulous alpine flowers and all sorts of birds enjoying the freedom. It is a happy place up there. And that is how I will remember Stephane.


Do we always need reminders about the quality of our life? Of life? Yes…I think we do. It is too easy to take it for granted that’s why. Our senses are there for a purpose. Let’s listen to them. Feel them and react to them. It can be hard to understand why sometimes. But do we really need to know. I don’t think so. As long as we are living. And living well.




5 thoughts on “Pain and Voodoo and Life

  1. Hi Anna,

    I do have very good friends and i did’nt know Stephane, but i have the same feeling like if ive lost a close friend of mine. My toughts are with all of you… Keep on going living well.


  2. Pingback: Kilian will not race Western States | Ian Corless host of Talk Ultra podcast

  3. “To live in the hearts of those we left behind is not to die” -Thomas Campbell. Stephane will continue to live on through all those who knew and loved him. Thanks Anna for sharing this withus and in turn reminding us all how precious every day is and to live each one fully and well and surrounded by those who inspire us. My thoughts go out to those who lost their friend. He will be missed but does live on within you.

  4. Absolutely tragic. And after just losing my mom, I agree that we need those reminders of living life to the fullest. My heart goes out to you, and stephane’s family and friends. At least he passed on doing what he loved and living to his fullest potential in his final steps.

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