After the middle distance final yesterday, I had to make the hard decision to skip the WOC-relay, and give my body the rest it have been crying for since the Long-qualification on sunday.
This WOC has been different and more difficult, than I have tried before. As I said I was extremely tired 2 weeks before, and also got sick a week before WOC, and didn't train much during that period. 2 days before the longdistance qualification, I started to feel better, and I was optimistic about the races. The qualification went well, but during the race I was very tired, and afterwards my Quadriceps and Hamstrings got very sore. I couldn't walk down stairs on monday, and when I tried running, it was really painful.
Tuesday morning before the Longdistance final I had a morning run, the legs were better, but when I tried to run fast, my hamstrings were so painful, that I couldn't do it. Our physiotherapist showed some magic and during the warm-up I thought that maybe it would be okay.
Despite the difficult preparation, I was able to run my best longdistance race ever. I just thought that I would open hard and see if I could keep the pace all the way. The orienteering went well, and I was focused on what to do, and hardly made any mistakes. Passing the arena I realised that my race was really good, but I was starting to feel tired, and my hamstrings were not far from cramping. The last loop was looong, but I managed to stay in control of my orienteering, and it was just in the last uphill that my legs cramped. I did some bad routechoices in the end, but still finished in best time, and very happy about my performance. My race was good enough to 8th spot, and I was only 4,42min after the winner Thierry Guergiou. I guess I have never been closer to fulfil my dream about a WOC-medal! I was simply not strong enough in the end.
After the race it was difficult for me to walk, and both my Quadriceps and Hamstrings were wasted. On wedensday we had a rest day and, besides a lot of massage, I did some aqua-jogging to loosen up. On thursday it was time for middle-distance qualification. I was not ready at all for that, and I got totally lost on the way to 1st control, and lost almost 5 minutes. I tried to keep pushing and to tell myself that it was still possible to make the final, but I didn't really believe it. But when I got close to the finish I could hear people shouting for me, and I gave it all in the end, and was able to make the final in 15th spot in my heat...
The feeling during the race was mentally and physically awful, and even though my legs were a bit better, I was still difficult to warm-down, because of sore muscles.
Before the final yesterday I was actually feeling ok, and I was optimistic. But I quickly realised that my body was not working as normal. I did some small mistakes in the beginning, but otherwise it was a quite good technical race, and I'm satisfied with that. But of course I was hoping for more than 22nd spot, 5 minutes behind the winner.
Again it was painful to warm-down for my legs, and after the race I also had problems with my stomach. It was painful and I was a lot on the toilet during the afternoon and evening. And that was also the final thing, that made me decide that it would be stupid for me to try to run the relay today. My body has not been working normally during the last weeks, and now I really need to rest, to avoid something serious problems with my legs or my health. Of course it is not easy to abandon our team for the relay, but I have to be clever now before it's too late. And I'm sure that Andreas will do a good job instead of me in some hours.
Despite all the problems during WOC, I'm really happy that I was still able to perform my very best in the Longdistance final on tuesday, but there is no doubt it would have been better for my body to run the sprint.
Now it's time for some serious rest, if I should have a chance to be back on top in a little more than 2 weeks, when we fly to Colombia and the World Games.