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My take on Glenn’s Chicago

When you watch the person you love not achieve a goal they’ve been working so hard for, you share the disappointment.

In Chicago last weekend, I had bad feelings going into the race. It wasn’t my race to have feelings about, but I’ve been emotionally invested in the training Glenn put in. Everyday I want to hear how far he ran, what pace he ran, how he felt, what his weekly mileage was, etc. Everyday getting excited about the outcome of the training. 
We’ve had a lot going on the past month. A lot of weight he’s been carrying in this family. I’ve tried to be brave and not suck ALL the energy out of him, but he knew I scared was about the surgery. And in the recovery, he’s had his hands full. The emotional turmoil of everything effected him. I’m not blaming his race on this, but wether he thinks so or not, it affected him. 
Race morning, I was nervous. I was glad to not be walking or driving him to the start line. I feel like he needed the time to himself. He was wondering around my sister in laws apartment with his headphones on when I got up. (New PJ of course) I kept my distance.

So he left, and I paced around getting ready, anxious to get out to mile 13.

My plan was to see him as much as possible, but I didn’t know how much energy I would have to get around to different spots- being almost 2 weeks post surgery. Turns out I made it to miles 13, 17, 20 and 25 and had plenty of energy to spare. (And no, the tubes weren’t out, but it was fine. Gross and annoying, but really not that big of a deal)

The day from my perspective:  
  • Mile 13-  I had been tracking him, so I knew his pace was conservative but he gave me a smile and wave at this point so I was hopeful he was ready to turn it on. I thought at this point, he knew he wasn’t feeling it, so was being careful not to go out too hard. I was analyzing everything. 
  • Mile 17- He told me he felt like “ass”. I knew that wasn’t good, but thought he would fall down to somewhere near 6:35 pace. I’m telling you, he is tough and pushes through pain more than most people I know. Certainly more than I. 

  • Mile 20- I had already received notification that his pace had dropped to 6:39 so I knew something was really off. When I saw him I tried to say things to whip is butt into shape and I know he felt bad, but I didn’t know how off he really felt. I got weird looks from those around me because I screamed so much.

  • Mile 25- We waited for awhile. I would see groups come by that I knew were ahead of him. Then I started seeing groups that I knew where behind him. Then I saw the 3 hr pace group. I had two thoughts- we missed him somehow or something really wrong happened. 
I was sad for him, I knew that not only the goal was gone, but any hope of a PR (which we were sure was in the bag even on a terrible day) was also gone. There was nothing that could fix this race, it was over. He just had to make his way to the finish line and at this point, he was running at a pace that is slower than his easy pace- nothing was working right.

When we saw him, I hopped up on the fence as high as I could get and just yelled I love you a couple of times. We gave each other a knowing look and I just couldn’t wait to give him a big hug.

Running is a funny thing. Sometimes it’s really just NOT your day. You hope that doesn’t happen when you are racing. Especially when you are racing a long distance like a marathon. That’s a long time to fake it.

Right now, he’s on the fence about racing Monumental next weekend. It is likely he will, he’s been testing out the legs and will have a better idea after a speed session on Thursday. Based on some twitter chat I stalked on between him and Collin- it sounds like it’s on. Will three weeks be enough time to recover? We’ll see. Nothing to lose right?

My thoughts on him racing Monumental. (I’m allowed to be opinionated about it… we’ve talked about it A LOT.)

  • It’s flat and fast.
  • It’s here. We don’t have to travel. Marshall and I can set up over by Butler and cheer our heads off. 
  • He knows this race like the back of his hand. Every bit of it. It practically runs by our house. No our street isn’t anything like Washington Blvd., but it’s close in proximity…
  • He has two friends running it (Collin and Sean)- both of whom he has trained with, and Collin in particular is shooting for a time that would be a solid PR and a really great pace for Glenn. Running with Collin will only help him. They’ve done several long runs together and he knows Collin is tough and he knows he is tough too and can hang on to him. They can get through it together. Although Glenn and Sean have done several training runs together, I think Sean might be planning to run too hard for Glenn- this will be his first marathon, but he is a ridiculously fast and talented runner. Collin’s the man for the day I do believe.
  • He’s ready to be done before many of the other late fall/early winter races are happening. He wants the race so that he doesn’t feel like the weeks of training will just be thrown out. But he doesn’t want to recover, train his butt off (again) and taper again. He’s ready for a break. And, for the record- I don’t believe the hard work will be thrown out even if he doesn’t race. The workouts are still there- he knows he can achieve the times and when spring rolls around he will give it another go. I would also like to remind him that he has been able to race some 5Ks and update that PR. 

Regardless of the outcome, I’m proud. He’s come a long way. 
And as crappy as he felt after Chicago- Marshall gave him a nice little reminder of what’s really important. Superman, apples and big smiles.
Do you ever feel emotionally invested in your significant others race? Maybe a sibling, parent or child? What do you do to make it better? 
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