A Spouse Who Does Not Run

I love my wife more than anything in the world. She is the glue that keeps our family functioning and progressing forward. She is not a runner – and I am. Over the years she has talked about potentially starting a running program, but like many people (men and women) she does not beleive that she could ever be a runner. She feels she does not have the body or athletic ability to do it. Even though I tell her that was me 2 years ago, she just has not found the urge to try for an extended period of time. I wouldn’t say that this difference between us creates any issues in our relationship, only that it is something we need to understand each other on.

As I was digging around the internet for articles about this topic, I came across a very interesting quote in an artcile titled, The Moderating Effect of Spouse Support on the Relation Between Serious Leisure and Spouses’ Perceived Leisure-Family Conflict:

Glover and Schuder (1988) reported the divorce rate among New York Marathon runners was 3.5 times the national average and cited a poll taken in the Boston area that found forty percent of married runners who run more than 70 miles a week got divorced.

Well that is pretty damn scary. Although my wife and I were not anywhere near divorce when I was training for my marathon a year ago, I can say that it did put a pretty good strain on our relationship. The large number of miles that I was running had me spending 4 hours on a Sunday morning running while she had to deal with the kids, just as she did everyday while I was at work. Then there was the miles I had to put in before or after the kids went to bed during the weekday. It was a lot and our time together suffered. She is a very supportive wife, but this would test even the most loving of spouses!

What the above quote tells me is that these people put their running before their families, which is something I am unwilling to do. My family is too important to me. As such, I have decided that I am going to hold off running marathons until my kids are older and our lives are not as hectic. When this will be, I do not know but I can still cure my running bug by training for 10-Ks and half-marathons.