In 2008, after narrowly missing the cut-off for the Beijing Olympics, Carmen-Douma Hussar walked away from her sport to start a family with her husband, Chris Hussar.
She gave birth to a baby girl, Pippa, and began a new life as a mom.
But by 2010, the Cambridge-raised track star started training again. She quickly returned to race form, winning the Harry Jerome Classic and the Oasis ZooRun's 10K race.
Not that she had anything to prove — as a Canadian record holder in the indoor 1,500-metres, and finalist at the 2004 Summer Olympics, 2005 world championships and the 2006 Commonwealth Games, Douma-Hussar could have retired with a sparkling career.
Simply put, she missed running competitively. And she gets to make her comeback with a pint-sized fan who calls her Mommy.
“When I had my daughter, I didn’t know what it would be like to come back, or if it would be possible,” she said. “It’s really exciting now. It’s a whole different perspective with her standing on the sidelines.”
Now at age 35, Douma-Hussar is giving the Olympics one last shot. She’ll get her chance to book her ticket to London when she races at the Olympic trials in Calgary next week.
She knows making it to another Games is a long shot — her season best in the 1,500-metres this year is 4:11. She needs to run an Olympic A+ standard of 4:05.70 to qualify for London, a tall order given Calgary’s high-elevation.
“I’m not saying it’s an impossibility. Obviously I’m still dreaming,” she said. “I still think if I have the race of a lifetime I could get the standard in Calgary.”
Watch for a full story next week.