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Justin Tade December 28, 2011 TWEET COMMENTS 0

A Shot in the Dark

A brush with death and return to the trails

Just one foot in front of the other," I tell myself. I had repeated this mantra on Sunday, August 21, 2005, as I started the Pikes Peak ...

Photo by Chris Hunter

Just one foot in front of the other," I tell myself. I had repeated this mantra on Sunday, August 21, 2005, as I started the Pikes Peak Marathon, which I wrote about for this magazine (March 2006, Issue 38). But, today is not Pikes Peak.

It is March 1, 2008. I am running, gimping actually, along one of my favorite trails that winds up three extinct volcanoes guarding the mesa west of Albuquerque, New Mexico. I have run this trail, with its miniscule elevation gain of 400 feet, in 40 minutes. Today, it will take me well over an hour.

I would like to blame my snail's pace on wintertime sloth. Instead, I have a bullet to blame. Three months and one week ago, a 7.62 mm bullet fired from an assault rifle ripped through my thigh. Three months and one week ago to this hour, I lay in a hospital bed wondering if I would ever trail run again.

 



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