The thing that has made this week a fun running week has been the company I have had to run with. My brother in law, Brian, brought his family from Indiana to spend spring break with us in Atlanta. We have had the opportunity to run together four times, and I hope I was able to make a positive impact on him with running which will help him to continue and fall in love with running like I have.
I think a little background information will help you understand why I think this is so cool, and why I am so excited about it. Brian has been a smoker for the past 15 years. This past January both Brian and his wife decided to give up smoking. I have to admit we had heard that before, but something was different this time. He had already been talking a little bit about running at Thanksgiving when we were visiting.
Over the past few months he has been telling me on a regular basis that he was going to run with me when he got here. I was looking forward to this and enjoyed hearing about it each time he called his sister to tell her about how he tried running again. These calls would be mostly about how he thought he was going to die and how his fingers, lips, and toes were going numb. These are some of those additional pains a long time smoker has to deal with when starting to use their lungs in a way they haven't used them in a long time.
When they got here Saturday he was ready to hit the road running... literally. We went for our first run together and kept it at a mile. He did great and was ready to go the next afternoon when we headed back out to run two miles. He did great for the first 1.5 miles, but then started to fade for the last half mile. Tuesday, just a couple days later, he joined me at the running club and ran 2.5 miles, without really showing signs of fading till after the two mile mark.
Today was the last chance we had to run together and he wanted to try to take it a little bit further. He wanted to run three miles and so I suggested we add the extra .1 to make it a 5k. He was in and so we hit the road this morning for his first 5k.
He started to tighten up a bit from what he had put his muscles through this week and we had to do a bit of walking in the last mile. I know he was a bit bummed about this, but I am still very impressed with how far he has come since he quit smoking.
I am confident he will keep progressing, and I am looking forward to the first race we can run together. I will have to pay for it as he told me he will never pay to run, but I am thinking it will be worth the cost.
The Marlboro Man best be careful. I remember a conversation that was had in the first run that Brian mentioned some ugly plans he had for him in the event he ever ran into him.