Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Doug: Tale of a First Timer

I remember meeting Doug on a late night in December of 2004. That's when he woke me up on the Metra right before the train was about to leave my suburban station. Doug worked on my Metra line. Doug was a life saver that night.

Over the next few years, I would see Doug working on my rush hour evening train. There are many unexplained myths of the Metra. One being as to why people have to stand in the vestibule for stops before they plan on getting off the train. (You're on the comfortable Metra that doesn't smell like pee, why wouldn't you want to stay in your seat?) But regardless, people do this. And when they're participating in this weird activity, they often talk to Doug.

Doug was in a one man battle against all the Sox fans the year the Sox won the World Series. One man battles are hard, especially when you work on a train that's going through the southwest side of the City and burbs. I joined Doug's team at one point, and from there, we talked about many random things, including running.

I'd caught the running bug by this time, but a marathon was still on the horizon. Doug seemed interested in taking on the marathon as well. I recall at one point I'd printed out a training schedule for both of us. We both liked the idea in premise, but neither of us executed...that year.

Soon after, I moved to the city and traded in the Metra for the Red Line.

In the following years, as I was training for the marathon, there were a few times where Doug and I met up for a run. I encouraged him to sign up the next year.

It wasn't until I received an email from Doug regarding marathon fundraising that I knew for sure he had signed up. 2012 was going to be his year. We emailed a bit early on in training. He seemed to be taking it in stride.

Then last week he emailed me saying we needed to talk. He said he was 'freaking out.' We talked one night last week for awhile about his training. He had a lot of questions. Questions that I asked my Uncle Mark the first time I trained for a marathon. Other than a few concerns about heat and what pace he should run, Doug seems to be nailing training. Doug has been training on his own. I give him a lot of credit. Training on your own, especially for your first marathon, is tough. 

As we wrapped up our talk that evening, I told him I was excited for him. This was his first marathon! There's nothing like your first time!

He must think I'm crazy. Crazy excited. For him.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

David P.