Trail Vallée de Joux was my last scheduled race for 2020. I was really looking forward to the race and had built up my excitement looking back over previous times I had run there (2015) and also running on the route a couple of times in the weeks before the race.
Unfortunately, I did not have the day I was hoping for. Early in the race I slipped on a slick rock-and-root-covered downhill. I didn't fall, but the maneuver I pulled in trying not to hit the ground involved some twisting and arm flailing and a sudden pinch in my back (at the time it felt like I was pulling a matrix-style save!). I was happy I didn't fall and kept running despite the pain that was shooting through my glute and hamstring.
Gradually the pain and spasm in my hamstring increased and my stride was affected by the lack of mobility and discomfort. You can see in the last picture below I'm trying to favor my left slide as I can't bring my right leg forward or extend it to climb up steep terrain.
At just after the half-way point my day was over. Not a great way to end the season.
Nevertheless, I did have some semblance of a season this year and I made it to a number of races. I'm excited about that and I learned some great lessons to take into the future. As always, onwards and upwards!
|The Jura is always amazing at this time of year.
|It was a beautiful sunrise on a crisp, cold morning.
|My last few strides as I approached my end of the race.
|These trails are so familiar to me that it was a heavy blow to have to stop.
|Not in the condition or position I wanted to be at this point. Onwards to next season.