Every year around this time, Fleet Feet Chicago gathers a panel of coaches, nutritionists, someone who works for the Chicago Marathon, and elite runners to offer wisdom for those running a Fall marathon or other endurance event. I forget that this is a thing until my mother-in-law invited us, and I’m so glad she does!!
We made it into a day trip to Chicago (Not-So-Humble-Brag: I worked a 13 hour day on Saturday and still managed to get up on Sunday and run 14 miles before we left. That never happens!!!)
While everyone on the panel had great information to share, the athletes were why we were there.
Desi Linden, Boston Marathon 2018 Champion, was a highlight. First, she was even tinier than I expected (when she ran past us in Boston, she was just so fast!!). So down to earth, my kinda gal, and was able to give us lay people tangible advice. My favorite, “Marathon day is like Christmas. Either you’re going to get that awesome bicycle or socks and underwear.” So true! You can do your part, but sometimes it’s not the best performance while sometimes it’s everything you dreamed of.
Don’t we look like besties?! Jim Walmsley was everything you’d expect from a record-setting ultra trail runner. None of us could even fathom his accomplishments, yet he was super chill, funny and just so nice! It was funny to hear how different his racing nutrition (it sometimes includes sandwiches) is compared to a road marathoner (typically gels).
Allie Kiefer was super sweet. She had some great mantra ideas and I do love her slogan of “Strong not Skinny.” A lot of us runners, men and women, boys and girls, appreciate it.
After meeting and learning from these great athletes, I’m so pumped for Fall marathon season!!!