Shalane Flanagan runs 6 marathons in 43 days. Chicago is next.

This weekend’s double hovered over his training. She looked for training spots in the sweltering heat of Tokyo during the Olympics, wher...


This weekend’s double hovered over his training. She looked for training spots in the sweltering heat of Tokyo during the Olympics, where several of the athletes she coaches were competing. She was not allowed out of the Olympic bubble, although she could run on the warm-up track with her athletes outside the Olympic stadium – until it was obstructed by hurdles and sprinters . The US team’s training center was a 45-minute bus ride away. She missed several days of training and never ran more than 10 miles in Japan.

She tried to emulate a shorter version of the Chicago-Boston double last month, going over 20 miles on a flat course one day, then 21 miles at a pace of 6:40 per mile over hilly terrain the next. Changing her 17-month-old son’s diapers and working in his backyard after the first race served as a replacement for what could be a hectic trip from Chicago to Boston.

In Berlin, where she started cautiously, Flanagan averaged around 6:40 per mile for the first third of the race as she ran with her physiotherapist, Colleen Little, a full-fledged under three-hour marathoner. . But on the flat Berlin course on a not-too-sunny day, she hit the gas in the second half, clicking 5.30 miles at one point.

Speaking from London a few days later, she said she had back pain, presumably because she was dragging her son. Otherwise she was fine. Still, she said, she was planning to slow down for London.

She did not do it.

She landed in a corral with the under-elite men, got caught up in their rush of speed, lost track of her gaps and ended up crossing the halfway point in 75 minutes. Whoops.

She figured it was time to back down, but she barely did, even though she knew the pain cave door might be just around the corner. Her body started to quit around the 20 mile mark. Her quads were on fire and she could barely lift her legs. She even started walking the last mile because she thought she was going to fall. She finished in just over 2h35.

“These last five kilometers have been absolutely brutal,” she said on Tuesday.

Her legs had started to recover, she said, but her right foot was a bit jerky. It was as if she had rolled her right ankle even though she knew she hadn’t.

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Newsrust - US Top News: Shalane Flanagan runs 6 marathons in 43 days. Chicago is next.
Shalane Flanagan runs 6 marathons in 43 days. Chicago is next.
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