Objects in Motion

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If you’re a marathon runner, it helps to have a supportive spouse who understands the large chunks of time spent training, the thrill of the finish, and the achy muscles and joints that often follow.

If you’re a physicist, it’s refreshing to have a spouse whose eyes don’t glaze over during a debate about the nuclear structure of an atom.

When you’re a marathon runner and a physics professor, you’ve hit the marital jackpot when your spouse not only runs marathons, but can teach your class while you’re pursuing your dream race.

That would sum up a bit of life for Anthony and Michelle Kuchera, two Davidson College physics professors who run marathons for fun. 

The couple met as graduate students at Florida State University. Anthony Kuchera ran and when Michelle Kuchera decided she’d like to try it, he bought her a pair of running shoes for her birthday.

She says that she struggled through her first mile and cried when she realized she still had to run back home. So of course, she kept doing it, and within a year, completed her first half-marathon.

He cheered her on during her first full marathon, then decided he’d like to try one.

In April, Anthony Kuchera soldiered through a hip injury to complete his first Boston Marathon, a long-time goal. Michelle Kuchera cheered him on—from Davidson—where she taught a class for him that day, tracking his progress with his students.

Even injured, he finished the race with a respectable 3:27 showing. 

Michelle Kuchera ran her personal best of 3:52 at the Pittsburgh Marathon in May.

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