Thursday, August 22, 2013

It's Evolution Baby...

Some people tell me that I am gifted in the sense that I have an amazing amount of patience given the amazingly difficult and demanding population of students that I work with. More often than not generally the adults that are telling me this are the ones that require the most amount of patience given that I work with truly gifted students. But patience none the less is generally a character attribute that people settle on when describing me. Recently I've been dealing with another godforsaken injury that appears to be ending both my running and triathlon careers in one fell swoop. As I've spent a mind numbingly awesome amount of time on the bike I've decided that my patience may be a product of my unhealthy relationship with pain which in turn reflects at deeper issues within my personality.

Let me explain...

The check engine light has been on in my car for a year now. Last August Andy M. and I were headed for a swim and as we left my driveway my car sputtered to a halt. Ever since the check engine light has been on as a constant reminder of the problem. My first approach was to disconnect the battery and hope that the problem was simply something minor like the gas cap not being screwed on properly or a wad of dust in the air filter. When that initial intervention didn't work and the car was seemingly running fine I decided that I could wait to address the inevitable until my next scheduled servicing in November. When the appointment rolled around it was discovered that I have a failing fuel pressure sensor. Ironically over time the sensor corrodes and gives mixed messages to the central computer causing the warning light. My mechanic warned me of the possible effects but assured me that everything would be ok. Given that the sensor was going to run me four hundred dollars I heeded his advice a decided to just ignore the problem.

Three years ago in the heyday of this blog I ran the Vermont City Marathon in 2:25. As a "debut" marathon it was supposed to signal the apparent start of a great marathoning career. The subsequent injury that resulted deprived me of ten weeks of training and almost landed me a three month sentence with the dreaded boot of shame. Instead of changing the sensor I decided to take the doctors advice in stride and transition to a career as a triathlete. Running forty miles a week rather than one hundred plus would undoubtably add years to my career. My initial success was overwhelmingly awesome and led me to forget that the warning light was even on. In the coming years as the degeneration of my feet and ankles continued I continued to put on a good poker face and ignore the light. Days were spent at work with bags of ice taped to my right Achilles to no avail. Hundreds of thousands of milligrams of ibuprofen were taken with the only result being a wrecked gastrointestinal system and the majority share of Peptones Bismul. The light was still on and as I resumed track work this year the sensor finally began to fail and I was left as the sputtering Volvo in the driveway. The intensity of my workouts had introduced me to a new level of discomfort that could no longer be ignored.

Resulting doctors appointments, scans, physical therapy, and specialists have revealed what I have know all along. I've shredded much of the important connective tissues fundamental to running pain free for the remainder of my life. So it goes... (KV)

Looking back at the inception of this blog I find myself surprisingly fine with the prospect of never running competitively again, or setting out at the end of a triathlon on this hunt to run down everyone that may have escaped on the dreaded swim. Thankfully what's happened yet again has been the very EVOLUTION that started this blog! I've fully embraced the newfound and brilliantly exciting prospects of racing my bicycles. Hindsight has showed me that the cycling quickly became my favorite aspect of triathlon and I dreaded training for the other two disciplines. In a funny twist of fate. I find myself injured and exceedingly happy at the prospect at the next phase in the Evolution of this athlete.

My goal after a conversation with Darren P. is to make this into a cycling blog that will hopefully capture my journey to the upper echelons of New England Road and Mountain cycling!

Keeping the faith!


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