For the average marathon runner, two groups are very important. The first is your training group, your team, they provide camaraderie and support, sharing the work during challenging workouts and can even make running in -12 with snow and wind mostly fun! The second group is the group of people who have taken their passion for making people better into a full time career, these are the professionals and this is where Orthotics East & Freeman Churchill fit.
I met Freeman in 2009 while training for my first Boston Marathon. I was panicked because I had arch problems that wouldn’t respond to physio or massage and the April race day was creeping up. I’ve been able to race succesfully because I’m an obedient and easily persuaded runner. Last year, coach told me to run 5 x 5km as a time trial. I did. Coach told me to run 3:19:xx at Boston 2010, I had faith in his coaching skill so I followed his orders and ran 3:19 at Boston. So when Freeman told me that he was going to fix my stride starting with my foot-strike, I believed him. He told me that when my feet were fixed, I would run faster, I believed him. I did run faster, I set a 7 minute personal best at Boston that year.
Freeman was a competitive distance runner, so he talks the talk and backs it up with fine work. As an athlete being treated for an injury, its important for me to have someone who understands the sport and my commitment. Freeman is that man.
A humorous personal aside. Well, two. When Freeman agreed to meet with me about Love4Gambia, we went for coffee and he insisting on paying because I looked like “a starving student.” Last spring, my Cabot Trail Relay Team put on a Beer Mile Race (not my best event). We had great fun, posted our photos on Facebook, and entertained ourselves making comments about the photos. I logged into Facebook one day and saw that Freeman had commented on one of my beer mile photos. I cringed and felt like a teenager who got caught misbehaving as I clicked on Freeman’s comment. It said, “Next time, invite me.” Freeman is the man.
So, thank you to Freeman & Orthortics East for not only helping me run my first Boston Marathon but for helping me achieve my goal of running across The Gambia!