Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Injuries, spring water, and running.

Last week I managed to put my mid back and neck out. This was due in two parts: I was dancing with my son on my shoulders, and the next day in class while teaching stage fighting, I held a position too long being headlocked, that my back went "Doing!" It stiffened up really quickly, and I could not move my head without moving my shoulders. I still managed to rattle off 7 Yasso intervals running up to the track from KG Nissan, and back down to pick up my car. A great workout even if my body was in pain.

This went on for a couple of days until I made it to the chiropractor Friday afternoon. This is the first time in my life that I have ever made a visit to the chiro, and I was naive to what happens. He popped my neck, popped my back and sent me on my way after 45 minutes or so. The stiffness miraculously gone, the muscle pain has lingered over the last 4 days...

I have had trouble trying to get a massage therapy appointment that fits my schedule. Also, my ankle has seemed to pack up, so getting that un-frozen is a priority. Chiro appointment is set up for Friday afternoon.

The Yasso's have been hard but great. Trying to maintain 3:00 minute 800m gets tough on the back end of the intervals, and this week I am taking on 8 intervals. Sean and I managed 28kms yesterday, and we are on the downward taper of marathon training. I am getting excited for the big day. A sub 3 hour marathon is the lofty goal, but I believe that I can make that happen.

One disturbing discovery on our run yesterday morning was the changes made to the artesian springs in the Watershed. The Corporation of Delta has unilaterally restricted access to the springs by engineering rocks with rebar drilled through them and cemented to each other. These changes to the springs we not made public at the park, and are quite concerning. I have been in contact with the Corporation of Delta trying to get and explanation about the springs, and will continue to push for open and free access to the water. I managed to jam out a letter to the Corporation of Delta Mayor and Council, and hopefully there will be some action to allow access to the artesian springs.

My letter to the Corporation of Delta:

Dear Mayor and Council
As a recreational user of the Watershed park, it is disturbing to me that the springs have been capped. This seems to be a knee jerk reaction to other users accessing the springs from Highway 91, and to the potential liability issue of the safety of the water from the spring. These reasons were suggested to me by Arvind Sharma of the Corporation's engineering department.
I myself do not access the park from highway 91 and cross over the BNSF rail line, entering the park at the proper entry points. I do use the springs as I have for the last 13 years, to fill my water bottle while exercising in the park. The water tastes amazing, flows freely, and my family and I have had no health concerns whatsoever regarding the consumption of this water. The last two winters have been wonderful for refilling my bottles while training for the Vancouver Marathon, and another 50km race. Spending 5 hours in the park in training, it is amazing to have access to such clean drinkable water. During the summer, the springs can be a godsend as the weather heats up.
The heavy handed limiting of park user's access to the spring is disturbing for a couple of reasons: First, there was no notice at any of the park entries of this action taking place. It appears that the public was not consulted about this action taken by the Corporation of Delta, Mayor, and Council. This is plain wrong.
Secondly, this is natural, beautifully free flowing water. I'm stunned that the elected officials at the Corporation would choose to prohibit or prevent people's access to water. this is something that makes the Watershed a unique park south of the Fraser. This is water that people have accessed for decades.
There are some ways to remedy the situation.
One, remove the caps. Immediately. These caps decided upon unilaterally, appear to be an attack on the Watershed Park. If safety is a concern, test the water. Have staff from the engineering department test the water daily, weekly, or whenever deemed necessary.
Two: Allow access to the water via Highway 91. There is a demand for this water. Many people access the park to cart water out. This is not a bad thing. It encourages people to use and explore the Watershed Park. Perhaps allowing for a safe crossing over the railway is a way to satisfy BNSF. A bridge over or tunnel under the rail line may be a way to erase the liability issue of crossing the railway. Or install an over the tracks pedestrian crossing with signage  at the crossing on the highway 91 side, providing limited access to the park.
Three: Do not allow access via Highway 91( as you already have done), but have users walk into the park to get their own water. If they want it that badly, make them work for it.
Four: Allow for users access to the spigot by the pumphouse, and to the other two springs along the lower trail, enough space within the boulder caps to fill their water containers, rather than completely covering the springs with boulders, rebar, and cement.
With the potential twinning of the train tracks that run alongside the Delta Watershed, I hope that the natural springs will be left alone, rather than capped permanently.
The capping of the springs is disturbing. It is an attack on the crown jewel of North Delta. Please reconsider your actions, and direct the engineering department to remove the caps on the springs.

I feel quite strongly about this issue, and it does not seem like it will go away easily. The online petition is here. The facebook group is here. 

If you feel strongly about this issue of spring water access in the Shed, please sign the petition and visit the Facebook page.