Today I ran the most I have ever run in the same day, just under 9 miles. It wasn’t all at once, though, because it came while running “bandit” for my classmates as they finished the Lausanne Marathon and Half Marathon. This means that I waited for them a few miles before the finish line and ran alongside them to help motivate them through the final and most difficult leg.
I first ran bandit for Katie Ban in last year’s Houston Half Marathon. It was a good time and seemed to be appreciated so I offered it up to my running classmates this year. They enthusiastically accepted the offer and I managed to recruit a co-bandit in Mathias, my French teammate from my startup group.
We jogged out first to meet Max, our Russian teammate also from the startup group, about three miles from the finish of the marathon (in front of the Olympic museum). He was hurting so we tried to distract him with jokes and urged him on. He finished just under his target time of 4 hours.
Then we doubled back and met up with Sergei, my Belarussian teammate from the first building block, about two miles from the finish of the half marathon (also in front of the Olympic museum). He was in strong form so we just paced him and tried to spur him on at the end. He finished well under his target time of 2 hours.
We then turned around to go back for Alex, my Chinese teammate also from the first building block, who had expected to come in far behind Sergei. Before I could make my way through the throng, however, Alex had arrived, just over 2 hours, and apparently hadn’t needed any additional motivation.
Even if our participation didn’t make one iota of difference, it felt good to support our friends. We’ve all been through a lot together so supporting each other in our various endeavors comes naturally. I expect it will continue long after graduation in December.