Running: The key to lifelong love, physical and mental health

Strolling the indoor practice facility on the University of Colorado campus during last month’s Potts Invitational track meet, svelte and fit-looking Marlys Thurow fit the bill with a hint of purple in her hair, purple shoes and a light spring in his step. Runners and pitchers exchanged greetings with her as they passed, athletes on their way to warm up, Marlys on her way to continue volunteering as an official with the Colorado track and field program.

Ken and Marlys Thurow, longtime CU track officials married for 65 years, share rural South Dakota values. (Courtesy photo)

Across the infield of the track, seen through glimpses of running runners, was Marlys’s husband, Ken, with a stopwatch and clipboard in hand, on his way to timing another event. The Thurows have been stalwarts of the track and field refereeing group that has been helping the CU program since former CU coach Rich Castro founded the club in 1979. However, Ken and Marlys have known each other for a long time: they celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary in December and they first met 72 years ago growing up in rural South Dakota.

In the midst of the pandemic, Valentine’s Day seems like an appropriate time to return to the stories of racing and love, which the Thurows embody so well, as do another couple of Boulder Road Runners, Ruth and Ken Wright, who celebrated their 67th wedding anniversary in August. . What is striking about both the Thurows and the Wrights is how nice they are, how comfortable each feels with his life partner. It’s an appealing quality and a welcome change from the pandemic-induced angst hanging in the air in today’s trying times.

  Short on Time? Try These Bodybuilding Workout Tips | BarBend

“Ken and Marlys are a delight!” Karen Lechman, CU’s director of cross country and athletics operations, in an email. “They are kind, respectful and see the positive things in life, even in difficult times. I hope you will be an inspiration to the student-athletes in our track and field competitions. What a great example of physical and mental health for life.”

Running is key to that “lifelong physical and mental health,” said Ken Wright, director of Wright Water Engineers Inc., who competed in races well into his 80s. “Running has kept us healthy,” and health has made them happy by allowing them to stay active and engaged with their children, grandchildren, work, and the Boulder community. In fact, all four of them are very active old men.

First, let’s get to the question long-term couples are always asked: “What’s the secret to your long marriage?”

“Never go to bed angry,” Marlys said when I saw the Thurows, both 85, at a grocery store a couple of weeks after the track meet. She and Ken were shopping for Thanksgiving dinner, yes, Thanksgiving because her three children had missed Thanksgiving due to the pandemic and were coming over. As they stood in the produce section near the front of the store, they made their plan, carefully dividing up their coupons: Ken looking for deals on produce; Marlys the cereal and the ingredients of the cake.

“We share the same values,” Ken said. “The values ​​we grew up with in that part of the world. that medium. We both got married with the idea, ‘This is what it’s going to be.’ It was easy to stay together. We had a lot in common.”

  How I Move: Former Saturdays singer Frankie Bridge on finding exercise that worked for her

Those values ​​were forged on the plains of South Dakota, near the small town of Ramona, population 250 (Ken, a farmer, and Marlys who grew up in the town), where they attended the same high school and graduated from a class of 11. Without a lot of money Early in their marriage, Marlys’ father, a truck driver, signed for a mobile home, 8 feet by 29 feet. They moved him to three different towns for three years. Each worked while the other went to school. Ken attended Wartburg Seminary after college. Marlys was trained as a teacher. They moved to Boulder in 1990, saw Bolder Boulder, and joined the Boulder Road Runners a year later. Ken, recently retired as a Lutheran pastor, and Marlys have been volunteers and key contributors ever since.

“We support each other,” said Marlys, who has finished 26 times at Bolder Boulder, along with a marathon finish and a half-marathon finish. Ken has run 25 Bolders, as well as one marathon and two half marathons.

Shared interests and values ​​have also been key to the Wrights’ long and fulfilling marriage, Ruth Wright said. She and Ken were married in Salzburg, Austria, and lived in Saudi Arabia, where Ken worked before moving to Boulder in 1959. The Wrights were early members of the Road Runners and regular age-group winners at Bolder Boulder. “We got married in 1954 and I stayed with the same man all these years,” Ruth said, laughing, during an interview last week.

The secret to the Wrights’ enduring marriage? “We had a common background.” Each came from immigrant parents and both sides of the family were “quite adventurous. If Ken had continued to work for Milwaukee Gaslight, like his father, we would not have gotten married. We have the same adventurous spirit.”

  सूर्यकुमार यादव को क्या हुआ? | आईपीएल | चोट | health live

In fact, the Wrights traveled extensively in Europe and the Middle East, and with Wright Water Engineers, the couple volunteered and worked at Machu Picchu in Peru. Ruth, one of the pioneers of Boulder Open Space, wrote the 55-foot Height Control Amendment to the City Charter that was adopted by the citizens in the November 1971 election. At 93, she retains energy and vitality , although, he said, it has a little less energy than before.

Running was another of the couple’s shared interests. “It seemed like a good exercise to do. Run downhill and back up” the hill near his home above Casey Junior High School. “I actually took some lessons in running from a champion runner. When I was running with Ken, he was like, ‘Okay, now turn on the afterburners,’ and I ran. I can still do that, and I can show you how.”

I would certainly enjoy it, I told him.

Follow Mike Sandrock on Instagram: @Mike Sandrock

Note: Another of Boulder’s running pairs, former Buffs Sara and Brent Vaughn, will be at In Motion Running, 1880 30th St. on Friday from 6-8 pm to celebrate Sara’s run and victory at the Cal International Marathon of December 5.

Leave a Comment