Archives for posts with tag: Erik Edmonds

Erik Edmonds competes in the Santa Barbara International Marathon on Nov. 10, 2012. Edmonds races in a “running” wheelchair. (Photo contributed by Erik Edmonds)

With just a couple weeks to prepare following surgeries that kept him on the couch for months over the summer, Santa Cruz resident Erik Edmonds — a paraplegic who competes in a special “running” wheelchair — finished the Santa Barbara International Marathon in 23rd place overall on Saturday.

Edmonds won the wheelchair division as the only entrant for the second straight year. He crossed the finish line after 26.2 miles in 2 hours, 57 minutes, 40.7 seconds — just a few minutes off his 2011 time of 2:53:21.5.

Edmonds, 32, lost the ability to walk when his spinal cord was damaged in a single-car accident in 2001 and is paralyzed from his upper-middle back down. He continues to suffer from neuropathic pain, which worsens when he is sedentary and makes him feel as though the left side of his body from his hip down is on fire.

In part in an effort to combat that pain and in part because of his competitive nature and drive, Edmonds has been competing in marathon and triathlon the past couple years and is itching to get back in the water for triathlon.

“I had 2 more ankle surgeries starting in June that kept me on my couch for almost 4 months.  It really sucked,” Edmonds wrote in an email.  “It looks like the surgeries went OK but I am still unable to go in the water.  So in the mean time I am cycling and running, waiting for the green light to get back in the ocean.”

Abraham Kogo of Kenya won the marathon in 2:23:09.7.

Santa Cruz resident and wheelchair triathlete Erik Edmonds finished the Ironman California 70.3 in Oceanside on March 31.

Edmonds, who is paralyzed from the middle/upper back down but swims without aid, used two three-wheeled racing chairs (one for running and another for cycling) for the hilly land portions of the triathlon, crossing the finish line in 8 hours, 14 minutes, 11 seconds.

In overcast conditions and some light drizzling, Edmonds finished the 1.2-mile swim in 1:05:42, the 56-mile bike in 4:36:41 and the 13.1-mile run in 2:16:11 for sixth place in the physically challenged division [2,082 overall], according to results.

But his race, which was his first half-Ironman, was not without incident.

“Pretty close to the beginning of the run, I crashed and blew a tire. So I did most of the run with a flat,” Edmonds wrote in an email, noting that the challenge was also one of the biggest highlights of his race, along with finishing.

Next up, Edmonds plans to do the Wildflower tri in May and an Ironman down the road.

Also from Santa Cruz County, pro triathlete Eric Clarkson placed 29th overall [4:17:00], Stephanie Shonnenshine placed 1,741 [6:56:18], and Nickola Losee placed 1,767 [6:59:51], Alice Gallup placed 2,106 [8:23:00].

Andy Potts of Colorado Springs was the overall winner, finishing in 3:54:03, and Canadian Melanie McQuaid was the women’s winner in 4:19:13.

— Christina Gullickson, on Twitter at CGullTweets

NOTE: An earlier version of this post said Edmonds competed in the wheelchair division. He actually competed in the physically challenged division, which had two wheelchair racers. Also, a reader pointed out that earlier the post and headline made it sound as if Edmonds was physically bound to his wheelchairs, which is not the case. He just gets around with them. This post has been updated to reflect those changes.

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