This season has certainly been rife with bumps in the road and challenges that are both physical and mental. While in the midst of battling my injuries from my bike crash in August, I've recently had to deal with another mental blow. As this information is public knowledge now, I figured that I might as well address it here in my blog, as it is now a part of my journey. As I mentioned in my previous post about the Canadian Nationals, I was selected for doping control immediately after my race. Well, here is a lesson that I hope other new Pros or those who might be participating in any World Championship Age Group or Masters events won't have to learn the hard way like me: Beware of not only all those off-the-shelf cold and flu medications in the drug stores (recall a Miss Silken Laumann), but also beware of all those ALLERGY meds as well!
Yup, I happened to be taking the Reactine allergy meds for my seasonal allergies that contain pseudoephedrine. This was completely inadvertent of course, since I've had allergies for 10+ years, I've always just grabbed whatever allergy meds happen to be on sale at Shoppers Drug Mart, and it has never even occurred to me that it might be cause for concern. My ignorance certainly did not result in bliss in this situation, but rather a hard lesson learned. So, even though the CCES established that I had absolutely no intent whatsoever to enhance performance with my Reactine, my punishment is that I cannot compete in any santioned races organized by a national sporting body until April:( As embarassing and awful as this situation is, I've got to just swallow it, and move forward. I really have to thank all of my sponsors, teammates, friends, and other fellow athletes for being so supportive through all of this!
In terms of the injuries sustained from my bike crash in August, it appears as though the soft tissue injuries are going to take longer than expected to heal. I separated my shoulder at the AC joint, sprained my neck, and looks like I tore my rhomboid muscle all on my right side (which took the blunt impact). So, as frustrating as it is not being able to swim at all, I am happy that I can at least run and do some trainer rides now. I'm hoping to get in reasonable shape to run the Angus Glen 10km in November ( as long as the CCES says it's ok).
In the mean time, I'm going to try and stay positive:)