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6 | Triathlete Fiona Ford: Pursue Your Potential

The Injured Athletes Club

Release Date: 11/28/2019

116 | Coach Carrie Answers a Question: Cassandra’s Cocoon show art 116 | Coach Carrie Answers a Question: Cassandra’s Cocoon

The Injured Athletes Club

“ As someone in long-term recovery, likely 12 to 18 months before I'm running again, I've struggled a lot with the muscle loss and atrophy to the point it's causing identity struggles. I don't look or feel like an athlete anymore. My coach and I will have to literally rebuild my strength and my body. How can I cope?”  In the seventh season of The Injured Athletes Club podcast, mental skills coach Carrie Jackson answers a question every other week about the mental side of overcoming injuries.  This week, listener Cassandra is struggling with losing her athletic identity. Coach...

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115 | Former NCAA Basketball Player Britt Hunter: Pour Into Others show art 115 | Former NCAA Basketball Player Britt Hunter: Pour Into Others

The Injured Athletes Club

“You need to equip your young adult for how to get through it on their own. So shepherd them. Get them the tools and resources. Let them mess it up a little bit. It's natural to protect, protect, protect, and direct, direct, direct—but your child needs to explore this time on their own a little bit with the right resources and the right people around them. They're going to go through this again and again and again at different stages of their life and going through an injury at a young age, they're going to have to grow up a little bit faster. So help them, but don't control them.”...

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114 | Coach Carrie Answers a Question: Jennifer’s Junction show art 114 | Coach Carrie Answers a Question: Jennifer’s Junction

The Injured Athletes Club

“ How do I walk the fine line between being independent and self-reliant in recovery—a positive—and opting to go it alone, which can be a negative? Separately, I’d love to know more about managing an injury in the context of a chronic condition. For example, I have epilepsy but seizure meds are not great for bone density. Flip side, reducing meds is good for bones but bad for the brain. Doctors can offer guidance but making the decisions is ours alone.”   In the seventh season of The Injured Athletes Club podcast, mental skills coach Carrie Jackson answers a question every...

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113 | Ultrarunner Amelia Boone: The Best Days Are Ahead show art 113 | Ultrarunner Amelia Boone: The Best Days Are Ahead

The Injured Athletes Club

“I would tell [Amelia of four years ago] that you may not believe it, but it's gonna get better, and recovery is possible, and honestly, your best running days are to come. And that's something that I've had to tell myself now too. I actually still do believe that, especially as we're seeing women in their 40s just blossoming in distance running.”   In this episode of the Injured Athletes Club, Coach Carrie and Cindy are grateful to catch up with our first guest ever—and first repeat guest—elite ultrarunner, championship obstacle course racer, and eating disorder advocate Amelia...

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112 | Coach Carrie Answers a Question: Amy’s Inquiries show art 112 | Coach Carrie Answers a Question: Amy’s Inquiries

The Injured Athletes Club

“ I have a question about the mental roadblocks when you are coming back from an injury. How can you handle the sensations you feel when you return to movement and the worry whether you made it worse; the patience to progress back slowly; and the fear that you won’t ever feel 100 percent again?”   In the seventh season of The Injured Athletes Club podcast, mental skills coach Carrie Jackson answers a question every other week about the mental side of overcoming injuries.    This week, in response to Amy’s uncertainty about her recovery, Coach Carrie outlines various...

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111 | Ballet Dancer John Lam: Open to Growth show art 111 | Ballet Dancer John Lam: Open to Growth

The Injured Athletes Club

“Dancing on a high level is—you have to be open. You have to be open that you can get injured. You have to be open that you will have to face things that you don't want to face. Because if we are not open and instead are close-minded, we cannot grow.”   In this week’s episode of The Injured Athletes Club, principal dancer at the Boston Ballet, John Lam, discusses his journey from a catastrophic injury back to the stage.    He details the physical and mental struggles he encountered during his recovery, emphasizing the importance of patience, personal growth, having a...

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110 | Coach Carrie Answers a Question: Kathleen’s Quandary show art 110 | Coach Carrie Answers a Question: Kathleen’s Quandary

The Injured Athletes Club

“ For the athlete who doesn't have a "staff": coach, trainer, PT. How do you get emotional support and guidance on a regular basis from doctors and PT you may see one or two times a week?” In the seventh season of The Injured Athletes Club podcast, mental skills coach Carrie Jackson answers a question every other week about the mental side of overcoming injuries.  This week, she discusses all the different types of support injured athletes need—and which types you can reasonably expect to get from your healthcare providers. She explains how to manage expectations in the healthcare...

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The Injured Athletes Club

“ A lot of times you're stronger than you think you are. You just keep going. You don't necessarily have to see all the way to the finish line. You just keep finding that next step.”   In the seventh season of The Injured Athletes Club podcast, we—mental skills coach Carrie Jackson and journalist Cindy Kuzma—continue to delve into athletes' resilience in overcoming injuries.    We kick off with a can’t-miss interview with pro quarterback Alex Smith, who shares his journey of returning to football after a severe leg injury and life-threatening infection—and then, a...

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108 | Carrie Answers a Question: Contemplating the Crossroads show art 108 | Carrie Answers a Question: Contemplating the Crossroads

The Injured Athletes Club

“How do I keep trying in the face of chronic health issues? Sometimes giving up feels like the more sensible choice.” —Sarah   “That’s my question too. How do I accept that structural issues are real and we need to accept and move on? There's a lot of discussion here about 'going back to' what we did before, but for some of us (all of us at some point) that is just not possible. I'd rather be able to walk for life without an assistive device than run for a year and then need a walker or cane for the rest of my days. Can you explain how to put the 3 A's (accept, adapt, act) in...

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107 | Elite Marathoner Maegan Krifchin: Trust in Yourself show art 107 | Elite Marathoner Maegan Krifchin: Trust in Yourself

The Injured Athletes Club

“At this point, it’s knowing the warning signs and when you can keep pressing on the gas and when you're kind of like, ah, I gotta, I gotta step on the brakes a little bit … If you've been unlucky and had an injury, you kind of know what it felt, what it feels like, whatever led up to it. You can think, ‘Ooh, this is similar. So maybe I just want to take a day or two off and go in the pool or do some kind of cross training just so I don't repeat history.”   Pro marathoner (and full-time occupational therapist) Maegan Krifchin had a pretty incredible fall last year. After what...

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After three years of racing Ironman triathlons as a pro, British athlete Fiona Ford was having the season of her life—she’d finished fourth in Ironman France and felt poised to push through to the next level, all the while building a thriving coaching business.

Everything changed in an instant during a training ride on June 23, 2012, when a car pulled out suddenly in front of her. Thanks to quick thinking and years of bike-handling practice, Fiona was able to avoid colliding with the vehicle—but she still flew off her bike and hit the pavement, sustaining a broken collarbone, sacrum, several vertebrae, and pelvis, among other injuries.

It was a long road back from the hospital room, where doctors told Fiona she’d likely never run a marathon again, to a podium finish in Kona in 2016. In her own excellent book on the topic, Back on Track—and in this week’s episode—she explains how she got there, one difficult step, online search, and therapy visit at a time. 

Applying the same diligence to her rehab and recovery as she did to her training and racing allowed her to unlock her true potential, she said. The result transformed not only her career but her view of humanity and the hidden potential in all of us.

Fiona told us:

  • How injuries are viewed in triathlon, and how coaches work to reduce the risk (4:52)
  • Exactly what happened during her crash, and how her training and racing history helped her make life-saving decisions (5:41)
  • The reactions of the athletes she coached to her accident—including some who passed out when hearing about it—and why they inspired her to write a book about her experience (10:21)
  • How she translated her coaching and training approach to setting new goals for her recovery (12:17)
  • Why being a multisport athlete can be an asset in recovering from injury (15:34)
  • The struggles she faced when coming off pain medications, and the advice she gives athletes on the topic now (22:53)
  • When she decided to reach out for cognitive behavioral therapy, and why she’s glad she did (28:12)
  • Why and how she decided to return to competition (33:37)
  • Her secrets to conquering the pain of the marathon, including strategic walk breaks and mental shifts (43:53)
  • What injury taught her about the human potential, and why she no longer puts limits on herself or her athletes (47:56)

 

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DISCLAIMER: This content is for educational & informational use only and & does not constitute medical advice. Do not disregard, avoid or delay obtaining medical or health related advice from your health-care professional because of something you may have heard in an episode of this podcast. You should not rely on this information as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult with a qualified medical professional for proper evaluation & treatment. Guests who speak on this podcast express their own opinions, experiences, and conclusions, and The Injured Athletes Club podcast hosts nor any company providing financial support endorses or opposes any particular treatment option discussed in the episodes of this podcast and are not responsible for any actions or inactions of listeners based on the information presented. The use of any information provided is solely at your own risk.