Years of extreme sporting had taken a bit of a toll on Pedro's body. He knew it was time for a hip replacement when he just couldn't get through short races any more, but he was disappointed in the feedback he received from several physicians.
"I talked to several doctors – none of them affiliated with Flagler Hospital," he told me, "and they said they could replace my hip, but that I should come to terms with the idea that I should probably never run again. Well, that was not the answer I was looking for."
So Pedro found a kindred spirit in Dr. James Grimes, who in addition to being a highly regarded orthopedic surgeon is also an exercise enthusiast.
"He understood my desires and developed a plan just for me," commented Pedro. "There is never a guarantee in these things, but I felt with Flagler Hospital and Dr. Grimes, I was giving it my best shot - and it has really worked out. My right hip actually feels much stronger than my left hip now; it really feels solid. Zero pain. I have plenty of friends my age who have gone through similar surgeries and I feel blessed to be doing so well."
And indeed he is.
Ten days following hip replacement surgery, Pedro walked his way through the Magic Kingdom, Epcot and Animal Kingdom; eight weeks later he was power walking 7 miles on the beach, which he described as "a cold, damp and windy endeavor, but a joy none the less" At four months, he ran his first competitive run with the new hip, indicating to me: "Slow and steady. All is good." And he's taken on at least three more races since then – earning a ribbon for placing in one.
The last time we spoke, Pedro was just returning from paddling his way North of Manitoba, Canada down South of Hudson's Bay on a 21 day canoe trip with a friend. They would have gone further, he said, but in Pedro's words "Polar Bears discouraged two days travel down to York Factory."