Okay, an admission. In college, I took modern dance for four years. My mom’s passion was ballet. I decided to take modern to a) see if I could get flexible, b) meet attractive woman and c) get another workout. I gained some flexibility. I got another workout (and modern dance at two hours a day, was tough), and well, and it was a fun way to meet women who were as focused as I was with my running.
I admit this, after having just watched Shalane Flanagan bust some moves after her last long run prior to Boston. Shalane is pretty flexible for a marathoner. She also have some fine dance moves, and she was having a blast! While this is fun, her preparations for Boston were among her very best. And that should make this upcoming battle for the supremacy in Boston on April 16, 2018 a race for the ages. But this time, kind readers, we are serious about the race for the ages tag.
Here’s the Instagram celebrating her last long run.
ðŸ’ƒðŸ¼ðŸ’ƒðŸ¼ðŸ’ƒðŸ¼ðŸ’ƒðŸ¼ This is exactly how I feel about completing my last long run ðŸƒðŸ¼â€â™€ï¸ before the Boston Marathon. #theseladiesrock #danceyourassoff #taperdanceoff #niceshirt @bowermantc Repost @wahoorun with @get_repost ãƒ»ãƒ»ãƒ» How was your Monday ? Ours was alright . @shalaneflanagan you’re it ! #wahoodanceparty #shutupanddancewithme #wahooshakeout
Shalane Flanagan is the 2017 NYC Marathon Champion. Shalane Flanagan has been training for the Boston Marathon since January, as she felt, she had some unfinished business. Shalane has held American records at 5000 meters, and 10,000 meters. Her first marathon was a second place at the NYC Marathon in November 2010, running 2:28:40. It was best performance by an American woman in 20 years. Her win in 2017 in the Big Apple was the finest performance and first win by an American woman since 1977, when the late and diminutive powerhouse, Miki Gorman won the five borough race, then, in its second year as a five borough race.
Shalane Flanagan, NYC Marathon 2017, photo by PhotoRun.net
As soon as she got across the finish line, many were speaking of her running Boston. Shalane has had some good races in Boston, but never a win. The kind of athlete that she is, the way her focus can be observed, both suggest that not doing well in Boston has grated on her. Also, a reported six figure contract to run Boston, from our friends at John Hancock (well deserved, I might add), sure helps motivate.
Well, Shalane Flanagan, raised in Marblehead, MA, was not happy with her ninth place run in Boston in 2015. She wants to end her career with a win. She is well prepared as she goes up against Molly Huddle, Jordan Hasay and Desi Linden, among Americans, and the top marathoners from Kenya and Ethiopia. Truth, is, only thing American sports media cares about are the American elite woman.
Just how good is Shalane Flanagan?
Shalane Flanagan isn’t good, she is fantastic, and, she is driven. She is that combination of warrior and observer. Do not ever underestimate her.
Shalane Flanagan is one of the most mentally tough athletes that I have ever met. She tries to mellow out, but there is that drive there, that Coach Jerry Schumacher saw years ago, and has cultivated. I recall an off the cuff chat with Coach Schumacher after London 2012, and Jerry knew that Shalane wanted to compete and he allowed her to do it. Jerry, who is not one to do interviews, suggested to this writer then, that Shalane Flanagan would win a big marathon, and had the talent, but she had to do it her way. Schumacher was not in his element in New York last November, he wanted Shalane to soak up the accolades and realize the import of what she had done. Jerry would have preferred to be invisible. Invisible but proud.
A fine coach is that combination of cheerleader, confessor, tactician and psychologist. Jerry Schumacher is all of those. Anyone can provide workouts, but how does one cultivate the sense of confidence, the sense of focus and the ability to know that, before one end’s their career, they are going to do something spectacular? That is what a fine coach does. Jerry Schumacher is, dear readers, a fine coach. And Jerry Schumacher coaches Shalane Flanagan.
The 2017 NYC Marathon was a perfect storm. Shalane Flanagan was ready, so ready that she kept her cool, and when she made the rest of her field, then, down to three (Mary Keitany, Mamitu Daska, Shalane Flanagan). Shalane ran the last 7 kilometer with focus and ferocity, winning her first major marathon title. It had to be sweet, and the media coverage was tremendous. Flanagan beat the WR holder in the women’s only marathon, Mary Keitany. Athletes have good days and bad days. Shalane had a near perfect day in New York. It was her destiny. It was what she built for over seven years.
If one looks at the most updated field for the 2018 Boston Marathon (5April18 Field List Boston Marathon.pdf), it is obvious that the team behind the Boston Marathon has got the hint. If they want this race to soar, as they do, John Hancock assembled the finest American women’s field ever, with some of the finest Kenyan and Ethiopian athletes as well. Whoever wins this one, will work for their money and the champions’ wreath. If they want media to go crazy, in this media obsessed age, when the constant barage of media platforms overwhelms the average person, then, a race with the top Americans will stand out. If an American woman can win Boston, well, you have the Trifecta.
There are strengths and weaknesses with the entire elite American field, with Shalane Flanagan, Molly Huddle, Jordan Hasay and Desi Linden. We will just have to wait for nine days to see the sea of runners racing from Hopkinton, MA to Boston, MA, finishing their sojourn on Bolyston Street, with the Charlesmark Hotel on one side and the Boston Public Library on the other side.
Shalane Flanagan has a race with destiny.
Watch closely, sports fans, as a race like this comes once in a generation.
Read this instagram closely. Shalane Flanagan says alot here.
WE HAVE UNFINISHED BUSINESS On the pavement and the trails. In the pool and out in open water. On the road and in the gym. It’s something inside us. Something that refuses to take no for an answer. Something that makes us push through every time, no matter what. 2015 Boston Marathon was a stinker Marathon for me. Ive been training and preparing to go back and conquer it. I have #unfinished business. @team_hotshot #unfinishers