During my senior year of college, I came up with a plan to run Notre Dame's annual half-marathon in April. I trained diligently from January through the first part of March, when I scooted down to the Bahamas with Billy and some friends.
Immediately prior to that trip, I noticed that my right foot was starting to hurt, but thought nothing of it. I figured I'd rest it a bit during our trip, and then I'd be ready for some more running once I got back on American soil.
Well, that plan didn't work out too well. By the end of our cruise, my foot was in just as much pain (if not more) than it was before the trip. I decided enough was enough and got it x-rayed. Shortly thereafter, I had a brand new accessory.
Yep, a new, clunky, black walking boot. The x-ray revealed that I had a stress fracture in my heel. Apparently the half-marathon training had been a little too much, too fast for my wimpy little bones. With about four weeks until the race, I was told I'd have to wear the boot for at least three weeks.
I had pipe dreams of shedding the boot and completing one last harried week of training before suffering through the race just for completion's sake. The first run after my de-booting, though, I knew that would never work. All my endurance had vanished, and I was only able to run a mere fraction of what I had been able to handle prior to my injury. Just like that, my first half-marathon ended before it started. Weeks of training, all down the drain.
The silver lining in all of this, though, is that I don't think running the race would have worked out logistically for me, regardless of the injury. You see, less than 48 hours before the race would have begun, this happened:
Suffice it to say that running was the last thing on my brain for the rest of that weekend.
Have you had an experience where, despite your preparations, you weren't able to achieve your goal?