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Rejuvenated Marshall is ready to run again

I did it: Larry Marshall celebrates his Appleby Bermuda Half Marathon Derby victory in 2007. It turned out to be one of the most exciting races in the past few years.

Larry Marshall has endured one setback after another since winning his lone Appleby Bermuda Half Marathon Derby title in 2007.

Now, thanks to a book by Jay Dicharry called Anatomy for Runners: Unlocking Your Athletic Potential for Health, Speed, and Injury Prevention, the 32-year-old is back running again and seemingly over the chronic knee problems that threatened to end his running career in its prime.

The hardest part, Marshall said, was not being on the starting line in 2008 to defend his title.

Marshall did make an appearance in the 2011 race where he finished 15th overall in 1hr, 32min, 54sec, about 20 minutes slower than his winning time of 1:12:11 four years earlier. “It was horrible, I didn’t prepare enough and went out too fast,” he said.

Now, Marshall is just happy to be running again, putting his name out there recently when he won the RMS Construction 10k.

“I’m just racing this season to keep my motivation going, I’m going to run the Peachtree 10k which I’ve done before,” said Marshall, a para-educator and a track coach at Whitney.

He leaves today to take a group of eight students to a meet in Tampa, Florida.

Marshall returns on Sunday, in time for the big race and will be on the starting line along with the Island’s top runners, including Jay Donawa and brother Lamont, whom he beat to win the 2007 race at the age of 24.

“I’ve done one race since 2007, in 2011 off six weeks training and the injuries came back after that,” Marshall said. “It was chronic over-use injuries or runner’s knee and IT Band Syndrome (iliotibial band) and it wasn’t getting better.

“I was trying all these different things and a lot of times they were trying to treat the symptoms but not getting to the root cause.

“I just happened to watch a broadcast on Jay Dicharry “Fixing Broken Runners”, applied most of the stuff and got his book Anatomy for Runners as a gift.”

Dicharry, a physical therapist and director of Biomechanics at Rebound Physical Therapy in Bend, Oregon, is also a certified US Track and Field Association coach.

“The way I was running definitely had something to do with it.

“I used to train different from how I used to race. [I was] more upright when I raced, but when I was training I was doing a lot of compensating and it was putting stress on my body,” Marshall said.

The stress on his body, and the frustration at being injured, took their toll on Marshall, who admitted to getting to a point where he “started to hate the sport.”

“I didn’t know what was wrong,” he said. “I stopped counting after 25 times trying to come back, it got so frustrating that I didn’t want to hear about track, talk about it and it wasn’t until I started coaching that I got excited about it again.”

Marshall has been training a group of boys at Astwood Park to get ready for Monday’s Heritage Junior Classic, a two-mile race starting on Front Street at about 9.30am and finishing at Bernard Park. Marshall was the winner of the inaugural race in 1997.

Much has been made of the new course, but Marshall thinks it could be easier than coming from the west where the inclines are earlier in the race. Plus he has a home crowd to pull him along when he reaches his neighbourhood near Belvin’s in Middle Road, Devonshire.

“I think from Somerset is harder where you have two hills in the first three miles, but this time you’ll be able to settle into your pace,” he said. “Unless it’s windy, and a lot of people haven’t talked about the wind.

“I run from Devonshire to the Causeway and back all the time and the wind could be a factor if it comes out of the north.”

Being sidelined for so long, people could be forgiven for forgetting his name and only remembering younger brother Lamont instead. However, Marshall said that was not the case.

“People still come up to me and talk to me about it, ‘when are you coming back out’, I find once you have won something like that people tend to remember it,” Marshall said.

“One of the hardest things was I was never able to defend my title, but I got over that after that first year. Then I just wanted to be back because there were some personal bests I wanted to tackle on the track.”

Marshall won’t put any extra pressure on himself to do well on Monday.

“I definitely want to finish strongly but won’t put a time out there,” he said.

“Right now it is the unknown, I could have a fantastic race or a horrible race, I really don’t know what to expect. I just can’t go out too fast.”