Married to Ultrarunning - Page 3
CREWING FOR YOUR SPOUSE
Supporting your husband or wife during their training is a completely different task than crewing your spouse when they’re running a race. In fact, it’s not altogether uncommon for fights to occur over a forgotten pair of socks or the wrong supplies at a crew-accessible aid station.
One year, at the Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run, Nick says, “It was abnormally cold and windy up in the high country and Dana was waiting with the kids.” In the mayhem of taking care of everyone in poor conditions, Dana accidentally put the wrong powder in one of Nick’s bottle—and he snapped at her for it.
“The minute I was out of the aid station I totally regretted it,” he says. While Dana had already forgotten about the incident, Nick had to wait another 30 miles until the next aid station to apologize.
“I guess I was carrying a heavy emotional load through that part of the race,” he says.
Spouses often play an active role beyond that of feeding and caring for their runner during a race. Knowing how to address low points or stress-induced tempers is often a skill only a spouse can fix.
Alison’s background in physical therapy came in handy when she was crewing for her husband at the USA 50 Mile Championships in 2008. Jason came into an aid station experiencing bad back spasms.
“She worked on me from every aid station after,” he says. “I would not have placed third, let alone finished the race, without her.”
RUNNING AND LOVE
Kyle met Deby before she was a runner—and doesn’t hesitate to say that he’d love her even if she didn’t run.
“I think that the character traits of ultrarunning that drive Deby's passion —diligence, perseverance and a positive mental attitude—are why I love her,” he says.
Dana Clark feels similarly, and realizes that without running, Nick wouldn’t be as happy—and their marriage would likely suffer.
“There’s no point in getting resentful once you accept someone for who they are,” she says. “It’s counter-productive and the real issue is: don’t you want your partner to be happy and successful in their lives? That answers it for me.”
Read on for 7 tips for dating, living with or being married to an ultrarunner ...