Here’s a story of Libbi and her bestie Sharon. Clearly Sharon has been Libbi’s support and inspiration … but right now it’s Sharon needs that support. Maybe our running community can send good, healthy vibes to Sharon and her family.
When I was a junior in high school I tore my ACL and MCL during a field hockey game. It was 100 years ago (okay, 17) so after surgery I was out for a full year- and two varsity sports. It ruined my identity and my hope of any real college athletics. I continued to be active, but most of my activity happened at the gym or in an instructed class.
Cut to a whole life and 3 kids later, I decided to join an adult field hockey league. After one game and a couple of dry heaves, I decided I needed to start running to get in shape for the game. So I turned to the only person who I knew could help me- one of my nearest and dearest friends. Sharon Desmond is a personal trainer, yoga instructor, and triathlete. If there was anyone who could help me train for my return to field hockey, it was Sharon.
Sharon has taught me how, when, where, and why to run. She gets up with me at 5:15 several mornings a week to run hills and track workouts. She watches my kids so I can get outside instead of having to run on the treadmill. She paces me on runs, tells me when to drop my arms, when to shorten my stride, and when to drink (even when I don’t want to). We can run together for hours and never run out of talking points. She’s taught me when to push on and when to listen to my body. I will be forever grateful to her that she has shown me the “Run Love”.
In the 11 months since I’ve been running with Sharon, I’ve raced 2 5ks, a Ragnar, and two half marathons. The best part? As accomplished as Sharon is, she and I will both run our very first marathon together- me, the newbie runner, and she, the 30 year veteran- together at the KBVCM in Burlington in 2013. I can not think of one other person I’d rather experience this world with.
And as for the field hockey, I’m still playing a year and a half later. My stick skills are terrible, but man, can I sprint to the ball