The Goal: 42.195 km

Before meeting my husband, my knowledge of endurance racing was minimal.  I cheered on marathon runners from Second Avenue annually while living in New York and that was the extent of my participation.  Since we’ve been married, I have watched Russell compete in one full IRONMAN triathlon (distance:  140.6 miles), two half IRONMAN triathlons (distance:  70.3 miles), and several shorter distance races (sprint and Olympic triathlons).  All of those races, save one, were registered for prior to our marriage.

Since that time, endurance events have taken a back seat to our relationship, our daughter, and his work.  It has been difficult to keep an endurance athlete from registering for races and with good reason.  They are personally challenging and physically addictive (think of that massive endorphin release).  Races also provide a training goal for athletes.  Need motivation for getting to the gym?  Register for a date-certain race.

So, he did.  On Sunday, February 19, 2017, Russell is registered to run the 25th Annual Okinawa Marathon.  In turn, he has been putting miles on his trainers, hitting the road (and treadmill) to prepare for one hilly race.

Course Map and Traffic Control

Curiously, Russell’s dedicated training schedule has had an unexpected knock-on effect.  His waking at 4:30 a.m. to get to the gym before work has motivated me to get to the gym as often as possible–a pre-[S] long lost habit and one that cannot be accomplished without him.  Yesterday, instead of going to the gym, I decided to make the most out of the cooler temperatures and ran up a long steep hill near the Officer’s Club 12 times, earning the respect of three men.  One man who also was running hills breathlessly commented what a good workout it was; another was walking his dog and commented I was “working the hill over”; and, the last was my husband who noted that it was a better workout than hopping on the elliptical machine.  The workout paid off.  Today, it hurts to walk, sit or stand.

I am proud of my husband for taking on another challenge given his tight schedule and current commitments.  I am also in awe of the fact that he continues to push me to achieve–and do–more.  I can only hope I do the same for him.


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