Nine months ago while preparing for the Boston Marathon she was diagnosed with a back fracture and had to withdraw from the race. She was really down but now sees it "as a blessing in disguise". She focused her gritty toughness and planned for a fall marathon. Her training has been perfect and she felt she was in sub 2:20 shape so her six minute negative split just let her run her pace. But she remained "running scared" all the way to the finish as spectators were not giving her information on what was happening behind her. She never looked back but realized she could not hear any cheering behind her or footsteps. Nevertheless she was keeping a little in reserve in case she needed it and was not assured of her victory until she saw the huge video at the finish with no one in sight.
After her breakaway Shalane looked more relaxed and like she was finally racing to the finish.Her form was perfect and she definitely looked in charge.She sees herself as a fairly stoic person so she was surprised by her overwhelming emotions as she won. She kept thinking of her list of reasons to get to the finish: for Meb, for the people impacted by the attack on NYC earlier in the week, and for all of her supporters. She said "it is not all about me but about all it took to get here and reach my potential".The victory brought every emotion to the forefront!
Her coach Jerry Schumacher had told her to be smart and intelligent in the race and clinical in running whatever it took. She was in the best shape ever in her life and it was time. Jerry knew she had the victory long before Shalane did.She celebrated with her coaches and family as she truly believes they deserve the credit. But I know the best in the world cannot make it happen if that fire does not burn within. And burn it does with Shalane.
After the hoopla dies down she will reassess her future plans as she had said if she won she would probably retire. Right now that decision is pending while she lives in the moment of her most dramatic and meaningful victory. Thank you Shalane for your American victory on the world's biggest stage. It is a victory for all of us!