Alan's Pain Tolerance
Posts and quotes from the book: ALAN TURING: The Enigma By Andrew Hodges
Simon and Schuster New York. Copyright 1983
Related Item PBS-BBC show entitled Breaking the Code by Hugh Whitmore, based on The Enigma.Page 345-6
"For him to cycle the fifteen miles was not entirely characteristic, since he would quite happily take in such distances on foot. His success in the Hanslope races had been followed up. On arrival at Teddington he had joined the local Walton Athletics Club, and had taken up running as a serious amateur. He was a long-distance runner, rather than a sprinter: it was his stamina that gave him the edge in races over three miles in length. During this period he would spend two or three four hours every day on training, and would run for the club on Saturday afternoons. Thus in October 1946 he wrote to his mother:
"" My running was quite successful, in August. I won the 1 mile and the 1/2 Mile at the NPL sports, also the 3 miles club championship and a 3 mile handicap at the Motspur Park. That was the meeting at which all the stars were trying to break records, but in fact were pulling muscles instead. Being a very humble athlete myself I was able to get away without pulling a muscle.... The Track season is over now, but of course the cross country season will be beginning almost at once. I think that will suit me rather better, though the dark evenings will mean that my weekday runs will be in the dark. ""
Long ago and far away there used to be a big idea in autism circles Aspies indeed had a pain tolerance. I can attest to that fact as I have been injured as have many more of us in our anthropology and like Alan I used to do amazing feats in long distance bike riding and what should have hurt , never did.
"That was the meeting at which all the stars were trying to break records, but in fact were pulling muscles instead. Being a very humble athlete myself I was able to get away without pulling a muscle...."
If Alan had the Autism Pain tolerance like it seems he did he would have never felt the signals his body gave him to "ease up,""slow down,""your tired" etc. Where many runners get the" brick wall" Alan might have got his "brick wall" if he ever felt it at all much later than others would. Alan might have indeed pulled his own muscles and never realized it. Short of absolute collapse we don't know we are tired usually. There seems to be nothing in our body to tell us that.
I have ridden some 10,000 bicycle miles in my life apparently with a bad hip and busted wore out knee and only when the injuries were severe did I feel them. While cycling I'd climb hills in higher gears and nothing told me as it did the other riders to ease up your pushing too hard on the pedals. I even towed a set of golf clubs occasionally with my bike. Eventually my knee swelled up so bad it could not be bent and still it really didn't hurt too bad. In fact after the operation I walked out of the hospital painless and in great shape. Three days later my followup visit to the surgeon was done without pain or crutches and he was impressed and I should have been to!
It has taken more serious injuries and years more experience for me to realize just what it is we don't feel pain wise. The Pain Tolerance is obvious with many in the spectrum that have been injured. Still others probably the newer diagnosed seem to feel pain in the traditional way. I hear of kids falling out of trees unhurt but yet three days later get x-rays and discover broken bones. Those of us from all over the world in auto motorbike crashes often have broken bones but they are treated as sprains. Those of us unlucky to have serious injuries and conditions know all too well the doctor or the nurse pushing and pressing until it hurts as a diagnosis method is a wasted effort on us. It seems if we feel pain at all it is only for a few milliseconds. That begs the question are we on some kind of natural drug? Or is something in the nervous system not connected?
Read further on in this blog and read accounts of our Pain Tolerance and even snapping good grade bolts like they were candy canes. In fact I suggest in my book that a test could be devised to "test for the pain tolerance" by having the aspie tighten a series of bolts until he/she thought they were tight, Perhaps we would break them with ease? I cringe and worry when I read about an Aspie in the hospital especially a modern one that usually has less ability than we did and honestly, what medical school has ever heard of autism let alone a pain tolerance associated with it? We have found X-rays ALWAYS need done first if there might be a bone issue.
Just how often has an aspie been hurt or injured or even abused and never really known it? Often times we seem not to show visible black and blue marks. Going around not feeling pain correctly is a serious problem and one that is naturally NOT obvious. I mean even when do get up and walk away from a car crash despite being injured who would believe us walking into the ER 3 days or even a month later only then realizing there is trouble? This is certainly NOT the ER (American TV Show) autism, the world knows so well. Just think If this pain tolerance could be figured out and duplicated?
Rich Shull,,,, Http://prerainmanautism.blogspot.com