I am embarrassingly competitive. There've been times when I need to check myself and reframe my thinking. Take our recent race for example. We were registered to run a half marathon in the bitter cold in Edmonton. What inspired me to register in the first place? Probably the same reason many runners sign up for a challenging race; the need to prove to myself that I was ambitious, tough, and could really embrace any type of weather. As soon as I submitted our registration, I started to think about how I could get a PR, my training plan, and checked out my competition on the Registered Racers list. Closer to the day of the race, Silvain and I both transferred to the 10 km distance because we were excited about supporting our youth friend, Aidan, in his race. This change didn’t downplay my goals.
Then my stubborn injury came along. I call it a stubborn injury not because it won’t go away, but because I was stubborn and didn’t want to stop running when I knew that my ankle wasn't right. By race day my ankle was so bad that a 100 m jaunt in the hallway was enough to leave my ankle throbbing for the rest of the morning. While it should've felt wonderful to relax in a heated clubhouse on a comfy chair watching the Olympics, it felt the opposite. I was angry at myself for not listening to my body and for not training properly, and I was also angry at myself for being so frustrated about being on the sidelines. Yet, I pushed myself to reframe my thinking and snap out of my woe-is-me mode; I needed to support my husband in his shining moment.
What a great moment it was! Silvain kicked butt in the race. I was so proud of him. He's oozing with potential, and he demonstrated what he was made of in that race that cold morning.
Because we run together, we get to share the experiences that running offers together, the joys and the sorrows. As Michelle's recounted, we got to share my happiness and in her sadness. Of course, it was easy for me to celebrate in my fast race. I might’ve even been in shock! As a testament to Michelle’s support and love, she found it really easy to celebrate with me. It was a bit harder for me to be with her in her frustration and grief, even if just for the simple reason that joy's easier than sorrow for anyone, so of course it was hard for us for Michelle to not race.
The longer we’ve been married, the better we are at being in each other’s pains. It gets easier and easier. Because we share them, the whole losses are diluted between the two of us, more and more each time. I’m so grateful for Michelle’s support in my life and in my running. The most loving way that I can thank her is in reciprocating with what she needs.
Support is so vital to energizing our running. Whether it’s your running spouse, partner, group, or community, be with them through thick and thin. In doing that, valuable skills and wisdom will be learned for the other relationships in our lives.
Who We Are
Hi! We're Michelle and Silvain: a married, Christian couple that's always seeking to learn, explore, and take on new challenges. Our adventures take us up mountains, down trails, and to faraway places. Follow us as we live, love, and are crazy! Forever!!