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Working Through Injuries
By:  Colin Abbott   (2008/06/22)

This is my first article for XC Ottawa and I thought I would focus what has affected my training for the last few weeks. Two weeks ago from today, I was lying flat on my back, completely bagged after finishing my first W*A*R (Whitehorse Adventure Run). This was only my second time racing this distance (approximately 21km) and, while I didn’t think of it before hand, it probably wasn’t the brightest idea to do such a long running race so early in the season. On the morning of the race, I woke to rain, which quickly turned to sleet, and then progressed to snow and blowing snow (on June 10th).

The race itself is billed as an all-terrain half-marathon, and it quickly lived up to its name. When we left (in teams of two) at 9:00 in the morning, it was zero degrees Celsius and the snow was starting to pile up. The race led us all around downtown Whitehorse before dragging us up clay cliffs, into subdivisions, inside a greenhouse in someone’s backyard, through swamps and ponds, over bridges, forests and hills and past some tourists giving us odd looks. Everybody made it back, but I’m surprised no-one got hypothermia (considering we were all soaked in freezing, snow covered conditions for over three hours). While the WAR didn’t have any fatalities, it certainly had some casualties, some of which I’m still recovering from.

In the days after WAR, I suffered from screaming quads, hip flexors and calves as my body repaired the damage I had done to it. Alas, muscular pain was not the only thing my body needed to repair, and as I resumed training two days later, I started to experience a deeper pain in the front of my foot, just behind my toes. This pain was aggravated the longer and harder I trained, especially when running. This resulted in shortened workouts, more biking and roller-skiing to minimize impact and an internet search to figure out what was wrong with my foot. The closest thing I found to my symptoms was called Metatarsalgia, which is a fancy word for bruising and irritating the bones at the front of your feet. While I am still recovering from this, I have found that using moldable insoles helps to reduce pain. However, the best thing I can do for it now is give it rest.

If you want more information on the WAR, including results, go to http://www.yukonorienteering.ca/war/index.htm if you want to see more, you can view the routes taken by some of the teams at http://rg.orienteering.ca/cgi-bin/reitti.pl?act=map&id=185&&kieli= . To view the routes, click on “choose class” on the top right of the screen, select any or all of the team names with a star beside them (our team name was Magical Mystery Tour), hit view animation and then hit start. You can control the speed and zoom of the routes taken and/or look at entire routes without the animation.

Interesting Reading. . .
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