So, it’s been a while now hasn’t it!?! 5-6 months or so since an update on the website. Lots of ups and downs since then. Here is a brief (hopefully) recap of what’s been happening, culminating with this past Sunday’s Vancouver Sun Run 10k.
Back in October I started battling some low iron issues. Then I started to get some pain in my groin. In hindsight these two were probably related, though I didn’t think so at the time. I was extra fatigued from the low iron and mindlessly still hammering away at workouts; extra tired –> form deteriorating more quickly, often, dramatically –> biomechanical disaster. This all came about around the time of the Chiba Ekiden. Needless to say I was not in a good headspace going into that race. I should’ve pulled the plug on that one, the team would’ve been much better off. But, Reid Coolsaet was the alternate. Reid was all set to run the Fukuoka marathon 10 days after Chiba. I didn’t want to withdraw, forcing Reid to run the Ekiden, and possibly have it negatively effect his run at Fukuoka. So, I sucked it up and ran horrible (31:something – all sorts of horrible).
After hanging my head for a few weeks (and relaxing in Hawaii) and having my body feel no better I had some imaging done in the groin/pelvis area. The diagnosis was osteitis pubis (i.e. inflammation in the pubic synthesis), sounds like fun eh? I’d assumed it was a stress fracture again. One might think osteitis pubis was a better diagnosis, but the timeline on that is much more vague, whereas a stress fracture is usually 6-8 weeks of rest and you’re good to go again. At that point I was pretty much done with the sport, I couldn’t wrap my head around suffering through another injury and another rehab of an injury. I started thinking about doing other things; Med school, expanding my online coaching service, a job as an epidemiologist. I also took up cycling, to stay somewhat fit, but more so somewhat sane and started to enjoy it. But, I still missed running, a lot.
Alas, sometime in January, I started back to some running. I dedicated myself to the rehab and built a good team around me; including physio Chris Napier, chiro Gerry Ramogida, rmt Andrew Peters, and steadfast coach Rich Lee. There were moments when I thought it all a waste of time, but then those when it seemed to be coming back together quickly. In hindsight I was lucky to pre-occupy myself somewhat with a few different part-time jobs (including a new ambassadorship with Forerunners here in Vancouver) and the excitement of an upcoming wedding (admittedly I didn’t really do much on the planning end of things for that).
Fast forward to the end of March and I found myself running 70miles/week, with the odd workout in there. The workouts were going pretty well, and I was doing just enough to feel like I was actually ‘training’. After a couple weeks at a training camp in California with the BC Endurance Project, a week in Ontario for my wedding, a nasty hangover, and a few days of good rest I landed on the start line of the Vancouver Sun Run. I was very cautiously optimistic and excited.
I got in the mix with the lead group straight from the gun. I thought I might hang on for 2k or 10k. Whichever it would be I was determined to be satisfied with the outcome. I was still in the pack at 4km, feeling pretty good, and sensing a few others not feeling so good. Eventually winner Paul Kimugul made a strong move up and down the burrard bridge that broke me and everyone else. I was so exhausted by 6km and really wanted to stop. But, quickly a battle ensued with eventually 3rd place finisher Jordan Chimpangama. It was tough, but fun. There were times when he would pull ahead of me and I’d just want to pack it in, but then I’d suck it up and surge to catch him. Then there were times when I was feeling good and surging on him. By about 8.5k I had a small gap on him (how small, I don’t know, because I wasn’t properly informed when I asked :)). Once we got to the Cambie Bridge I just sucked it up and was determined to not get passed.
This was the 4th time I’ve finished 2nd at the Sun Run. On the first occasion I finished 2nd in 2007 I was delighted, as it was one of my first big road race performances. The next two times I was bitterly disappointed not to win. This time, I was content. Sure it would’ve been nice to win, but that would’ve been a lot to ask given the circumstances.
So, that’s that. On to the next one…hopefully it won’t be a 5 month wait this time.
And finally, just wanted to wish Krista Duchene well on her road to recovery after fracturing her femur during the Canadian Half Marathon Champs this past weekend.