Marathon Mom Krista DuChene: Sensible Lessons for Chaotic Times

Krista DuChene: Sensible Lessons for Chaotic Times


Our family is back into the full swing of things with school, work, music, and sports, keeping me busy in the morning and evening. Fortunately the house is quiet for recovery in the early afternoon when I need it most after training. I’m pacing myself to get the necessary housework, groceries, and other tasks complete and am grateful for the part the family plays as team members. It takes effort to train them, but it is well worth it. One thing that I am really enjoying is that each child must cook one meal each week. It doesn’t have to be fancy, just food on the table. Even not having to be the one responsible for thinking about what we will eat is significant in lessening my load.

Now that I am coaching both the school cross country team and my daughter’s rep hockey team while working part time and training for the Scotiabank Toronto Watefront Marathon (STWM), I am often finding myself in bed before 9:00 pm. Like always, I go to bed without an alarm and wake up on my own feeling refreshed and ready to do it all over again.

Last Sunday was the Berlin Marathon. On Saturday I had run an easy 36K with some 200M repeats at the end, after completing a Friday evening VO2 max workout with the University of Guelph cross-country team. I didn’t set an alarm, but because Sunday was a planned day off I figured that if I happened to wake up, I would watch it then go back to bed. And I did. What an incredible world record setting performance by Eliud Kipchoge! And what an amazing day for Canadian women with Rachel Cliff’s 2:28:53 debut, Lyndsay Tessier’s 2:30:47 Canadian Masters (W40) record, and Catherine Watkins’ 2:40:11 Canadian Masters (W45) record. While it wasn’t Sasha Gollish or Rachel Hannah’s day, these women certainly raised the bar for the rest of us!

With the upcoming Chicago Marathon and STWM, it’s certainly looking like there will be a competitive chase for three women to book their tickets to Tokyo 2020. It’s very exciting for our sport.

Yesterday I raced the Run for the Grapes Half Marathon in St. Catharines. I was glad I could find a local race four weeks out from STWM because with our busy life at home I just did not feel like travelling. I put in a solid effort for 1:17 on a rolling course, including a start with cooler temps (but 99% humidity). I finished first woman and second overall with the first and third place finishers (men) ~5 minutes ahead and behind. The entire 21.1K was completely solo. Well, a few times a friendly guy ran alongside me, keeping me company. Thanks, Nick! (Sorry I’m not so chatty when I’m running). One of my fastest kilometres was with him. What a difference the company of others makes. Even having a lead cyclist would have helped me keep rhythm.

My race wasn’t terrible but it wasn’t fantastic, rather somewhere in between which can be expected at this point in training. I’m healthy, content, ready for a few more weeks of solid training, and very grateful that the course was well marked because I easily could have veered off course while in no man’s land.