Jessica Schultz, U.S. Olympic curler, shares her story of recovering from coronavirus

Jessica Schultz Curling
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Jessica Schultz, one of the athletes who tested positive for the coronavirus after the U.S. Club Curling Championships in early March, shared her month-long fight with mild symptoms to raise awareness and help others during this difficult time.

“In my almost 30 days of isolation with this virus, I have renamed it ‘my good friend Rona’ or ‘the abusive ex-boyfriend Covid,'” she wrote in an April 14 blog post. “This is an attempt at finding some humor in what could be a devastating moment in time. The ex., Covid, hasn’t been around lately, thank goodness; he typically brings the joint pain and inability to function. But Rona… she likes to hang out and give the low-grade fever feeling. She occasionally surprises me for coffee or waits until happy hour to drop her bad news.”

Schultz, a 2006 and 2014 Olympian, started feeling a little off the night before her team’s championship match at club nationals in Potomac, Md., according to the Anchorage Daily News. They lost the final. Schultz, 35, flew back home to Alaska. Everybody on the team later tested positive, according to the report.

Schultz, in her blog written after recovering, listed 13 symptoms chronologically, starting with chills and lethargy, including a loss of taste and smell and finishing with intermittent feverish days, but with a normal temperature.

She also shared having two “major breakdowns” during those 30 days.

“The first breakdown happened when Covid tricked me into getting excited about his departure, but a few days later he came roaring back with a vengeance,” Schultz wrote. “The second breakdown happened when I received news that even if I was healthy, I didn’t have my normal job to go back to and I needed to file unemployment. At this point, it was easy to feel defeated, becoming one with the couch. Through the first weeks of my relationship with Covid, I experienced all stages of grief (denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance).”

Last week, USA Curling announced it hired Schultz as its women’s national team and juniors director. Schultz previously founded curlAK, a non-profit to grow curling in Alaska, and had worked as a physician’s assistant.

“I’m over the moon excited to play a role in the continued strengthening of our organization,” she said in a press release. “We have a talented group of athletes, and I look forward to being a consistent resource from the grassroots to the podium.”

MORE: Olympic curling champ forms mixed doubles team with 12-year-old daughter

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Olympian Derrick Mein ends U.S. men’s trap drought at shotgun worlds

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Tokyo Olympian Derrick Mein became the first U.S. male shooter to win a world title in the trap event since 1966, prevailing at the world shotgun championships in Osijek, Croatia, on Wednesday.

Mein, who grew up on a small farm in Southeast Kansas, hunting deer and quail, nearly squandered a place in the final when he missed his last three shots in the semifinal round after hitting his first 22. He rallied in a sudden-death shoot-off for the last spot in the final by hitting all five of his targets.

He hit 33 of 34 targets in the final to win by two over Brit Nathan Hales with one round to spare.

The last U.S. man to win an Olympic trap title was Donald Haldeman in 1976.

Mein, 37, was 24th in his Olympic debut in Tokyo (and placed 13th with Kayle Browning in the mixed-gender team event).

The U.S. swept the Tokyo golds in the other shotgun event — skeet — with Vincent Hancock and Amber English. Browning took silver in women’s trap.

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Mo Farah withdraws before London Marathon

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British track legend Mo Farah withdrew before Sunday’s London Marathon, citing a right hip injury before what would have been his first 26.2-mile race in nearly two years.

Farah, who swept the 2012 and 2016 Olympic track titles at 5000m and 10,000m, said he hoped “to be back out there” next April, when the London Marathon returns to its traditional month after COVID moved it to the fall for three consecutive years. Farah turns 40 on March 23.

“I’ve been training really hard over the past few months and I’d got myself back into good shape and was feeling pretty optimistic about being able to put in a good performance,” in London, Farah said in a press release. “However, over the past 10 days I’ve been feeling pain and tightness in my right hip. I’ve had extensive physio and treatment and done everything I can to be on the start line, but it hasn’t improved enough to compete on Sunday.”

Farah switched from the track to the marathon after the 2017 World Championships and won the 2018 Chicago Marathon in a then-European record time of 2:05:11. Belgium’s Bashir Abdi now holds the record at 2:03:36.

Farah returned to the track in a failed bid to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics, then shifted back to the roads.

Sunday’s London Marathon men’s race is headlined by Ethiopians Kenenisa Bekele and Birhanu Legese, the second- and third-fastest marathoners in history.

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