July 11, 2015

Recovery run today. I was thinking about coaches today.

The running buddies were a collection of suburban dads with a hobby. That was until Tom McGough joined the crew. We often think about Ditka and Lombardi and the teams they coached to greatness. Add to that list, McGough and the Running Buddies. It wasn’t long after his arrival that this rag-tag group of slacking strollers were whipped together as a fighting machine. The Monsters of Mt. Prospect. We often talk about the “Greatest Generation”, Tom McGough is the unofficial leader. Paper maps, running schedules, and prototype workouts were developed. This wasn’t Ditka spitting his gum in your face or Lombardi throwing his clipboard. God forbid, you were ever late for a 0400 long run, the wrath of McGough was subtle and more tempered, but just as effective. Coach McGough was cobbling his ideas from Sheehan, Fixx and Higdon and making them his own. Everyone just showed up for the 0400 Tuesday morning 18-20 mile run to Harper College and back, no questions, no Lombardi time, just motivation. Running a PR at age 54 does not just happen, you need a great coach and a great friend like Tom. If you need some motivation, you can still meet up with Tom and Dick at I-Oka & Lincoln at 0430 on most days. This is right before Da Coach goes to church and then goes to visit my Dad. Thanks guys, you are my heroes.

More mountains. Favorite song today: Fly Me to the Moon performed by Frank Sinatra.

Michael Dolan's photo.

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