Jan. 28, was a day to recollect for Charlotte Prouse of London, Ont. After a two-year hiatus from observe and subject, whereas battling an consuming dysfunction, she returned to run a 13-second private greatest over indoor 3,000m in Boston, breaking the nine-minute barrier.
“Lining again up and crossing that end line in Boston was unimaginable,” says Prouse. “This achievement wouldn’t have been potential with out the group effort of these round me—caring for me as a runner and individual.”
Rising up in London, Prouse was a profitable runner in highschool, successful a staggering 9 Ontario championships (OFSAA) in observe and cross-country. Her success led her to a scholarship to the College of Washington, the place she reached the NCAA 3,000m steeplechase closing as a freshman and putting sixth general on the 2016 World U20 Championships in Poland.
After her sixth-place end at worlds, issues modified for Prouse. Now she was top-of-the-line up-and-coming steeplechasers on the planet, and he or she had felt she needed to reside as much as others’ expectations–in addition to her personal. “When you find yourself high 10 on the planet or high 5 at NCAA’s, you all the time need extra,” says Prouse.
When she returned to the NCAA, she battled accidents and developed a unfavorable relationship with meals and restoration. “I beloved my freshman yr, however my sophomore yr was very completely different. Ultimately, Washington was not the place for me. I used to be not going to be completely happy and wholesome there,” she says.
That spring, Prouse knew she wanted a change of scene, and joined forces with College of New Mexico (UNM) steeple coach Jimmy Butler, who had additionally coached U.S. Olympic silver medallist Courtney Frerichs earlier than she joined the Bowerman Observe Membership in 2016.
Over the subsequent two seasons, Prouse returned to the highest, successful NCAA’s as a group at UNM and putting second within the steeplechase on the 2018 NCAA championships. “‘I knew I wanted to get again to the place I wanted to be,” she says.
However even together with her success at UNM, she nonetheless was at battle together with her weight. “I used to be now on a group with among the greatest feminine runners within the NCAA, and also you all the time wish to be on that journey roster,” she says. “I needed to contribute, so I all the time band-aided myself by seasons with out trying on the larger image.”
In 2021, Prouse’s UNM steeple coach, Butler, died instantly at age 41. It was an enormous shock for Prouse, but in addition a wake-up name. She determined to take a while away from the game.
“The hardest factor I needed to notice was that working was all the time going to be there for me,” she says. “I wasn’t wholesome, and if I didn’t cease and care for myself, I knew I wasn’t going to get there.”
Prouse continued to work together with her dietitian from UNM to get extra comfy with gaining weight throughout her break. “I wasn’t coaching so much, and it was robust to regulate to correctly fuelling with out immediately desirous to burn it off,” she says.
“I feel being open and trustworthy about consuming issues in sport is the one method to recover from it and assist others,” Prouse. “It’s not anybody’s fault—it’s actually a deep-rooted concern in observe and subject tradition with feminine athletes.”
In April 2022, Prouse moved again to Ontario to encompass herself with family and friends, engaged on her comeback with College of Guelph distance coach Terry Radchenko. “I noticed the success of Madeleine Kelly and Lucia Stafford and knew Terry was going to be in my nook,” says Prouse. “From the get-go, he cared extra about my psychological well being and bodily well-being than my efficiency.”
“This return to racing has been nothing in need of a journey, and I’m so grateful for the unimaginable assist I’ve obtained from Athletics Canada and my dietitian from UNM,” says Prouse.
Prouse aspires to symbolize Group Canada on the world stage within the 3,000m steeplechase, and he or she plans to take each alternative she will be able to to get there.