Friday, February 21, 2014

Paula Radcliffe Hoping To Defy All

Paula Radcliffe hopes to run one more top-level marathon in a defiant act over the foot injury that she believed ended her career. 
Radcliffe spoke with tears in her eyes about wanting to finish her career as the world's greatest female distance runner on her own terms. 
This foot injury has been problematic at large races, as we've blogged about in the past. She conceded defeat at the 2012 London Olympics and was so uncomfortable in a 2011 marathon in Berlin she thought it would be her last. 
Radcliffe has been advising Mo Farrah and the UK Athletics distance group as well as running on the same dusty trails that are essential to Farrah's preparation for the Virgin Money London Marathon in April.
"Ideally I would love to come back and run a marathon and just be able to finish my career on my terms," Radcliffe said. "I would never say retire, because I am never going to finish running. I am still going to be getting out for a run and I don't want to jeopardize that because it's important. 
"I don't want to break down because of my foot. I have to listen to it. But I want to ask it to run one more marathon.
"I'd love it to be New York or London. One of those two. This London is too soon. But London would probably be my first choice, for sentimental reasons. It's where I started my career, everything growing up (as a kid she watched her father run London), and missing out on the Olympics at London 2012."
Radcliffe does concede that at 40, she's not likely to be close to her former record-breaking world pace. But she still wants to be competitive. 
"I'm not being unrealistic," she said. "I'm not thinking I can get back up and run 2 hours 15 minutes. But if I could come back and run sub 2:30 then I'd like to do it. Really, though, it's just about coming back and running on my terms. That would be nice but very few people actually get to do that."
Radcliffe has clearly been frustrated, however, with how things ended.
"There was a time from July 2012 until last April that I couldn't run at all and I thought I would never be able to run again," she said. "That means I can't do anything silly. I have to be grateful that I can just get up and go on a nice run now. 

"I might just have a little race somewhere just to see how close I can get to where I want to be. It's not a question of fitness. It's not about my age. It's not even the pain. It's a question of the efficiency of my foot. 
"This morning it was quite good but I was limping and favoring it for the first couple of miles until the joint began to warm up. 
"But then, when it gets tired, it becomes a case of me picking up the other leg rather than toeing off. So I'm not getting the same return on effort that I'm putting in. I'm running slower than I would have. 
"The doctors really don't know if I can come back. If they scan me it does not look like a normal foot because the bone that had a stress fracture is not the same shape as it should be. If I run every day I might keep wearing away at the cartilage and make it more painful than in 2012. 
"I can look back on my career and I am very happy that it went so well. I'm proud of the things that I did. You get philosophical as you get older. I think of things like the kids, that are way more important than anything I did running. I just think, yes, some things didn't come off but I worked hard and sometimes it did come off."
Reference: Daily Mail
If you are a runner with a foot or ankle problem, call our Rocky Hill or Middletown office to make an appointment.
Jeffrey S. Kahn, DPM
Connecticut Foot Care Centers
Sports Medicine Podiatrist in CT
Podiatrist in Rocky Hill and Middletown, CT
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