Boston Marathon Race Report

When I was a little girl, my grandmother used to dress me up on Patriot’s Day in my marathon outfit and I’d run a course in their backyard south of Boston. As I grew older, the idea of running Boston always percolated, but it wasn’t until I started running marathons that I started seriously courting the idea. In her demented state, my grandmother thought every marathon I did was the Boston marathon, so it was nice this past year to be able to say “Yes, Nana, this year I will run Boston.”  It is both heartbreaking and fitting that she died on the Thursday before Boston.

Cruising down Boylston

I arrived in Boston exhausted and sad. Thankfully, I was staying with two dear friends who boosted me up. I slept for 12 hours on Saturday night and even slept on Sunday night for about 7 hours. I drank plenty of water and powerade, ate well and stayed off my legs. On Monday morning, I met up with a teammate who convinced me that we didn’t need to catch the bus until 6:45. While I’m not sure who was more nervous, having Matt around made for a very smooth race morning. By the time I got into the starting corral, I had 5 minutes to go and was feeling good.

My splits aren’t particularly exciting. I went out slowly as planned and stayed steady through the whole race. My one mistake was thinking that I would have any sort of hammer to drop. I felt great throughout the race, but couldn’t have picked it up anywhere past 20 without risking a blowup.

Start to 6: Went out slowwwwwwwly. Got in one collision at a water stop and subsequently teamed up with some other people to share cups instead of having to veer off to the left or right.

Mile 1: 7:38
Mile 2: 7:19
Mile 3: 7:20
Mile 4: 7:07
Mile 5: 7:17
Mile 6: 7:08
6 to 16: Spent most of these miles trying to stay patient and telling myself “only ten more miles until you see Mom and Suzy,” “only 30 minutes until you see Mom and Suzy.”  I will say that I was more than overwhelmed by the Wellesley girls and rolled far left away from their waving arms. I was overjoyed to see my mom and sister at Newton-Wellesley hospital and impressed that they got the whole group around them to also cheer. It was a huge mental boost that carried me into the hills.
Mile 7: 7:01
Mile 8: 7:13
Mile 9: 7:09
Mile 10: 7:12
Mile 11: 7:10
Mile 12: 7:09
Mile 13: 7:09
Mile 14: 7:03
Mile 15: 7:08
Mile 16: 7:01
17 to 21: The Hills!!  I decided early on to approach the hills as an opportunity to run strong, not something to be feared. I am a strong hill runner and actually prefer inclines to flats. I focused on form, using my arms to drive me up the hills. I am happy to report that I think Heartbreak just gets a bad rap…
Mile 17: 7:17
Mile 18: 7:21
Mile 19: 7:24
Mile 20: 7:23
Mile 21: 7:27
21 to finish: Once we were done with Heartbreak (bizarrely announced by a huge inflatable sign), I started to grind towards home. It was about here that I realized a 3:08 wasn’t in the cards. I decided instead to try to run smooth and strong to the end. I saw my dad and aunt in Coolidge Corner and my mom and sister again at 25. I struggled with the silence under the Mass Ave bridge, where I had my first opportunity all day to think about the hallowed ground upon which I was running, to remember my Nana and Coop and how proud they would be to watch me finish. Thankfully, that silence doesn’t last long. My girlfriends were at the turn onto Hereford and from there, it was time to head home. 
Mile 22: 7:12
Mile 23: 7:19
Mile 24: 7:18
Mile 25: 7:18
Mile 26: 7:12
.2 (slash .4, ooops, not perfect tangents): 2:47 (6:47 pace)

One thought on “Boston Marathon Race Report

  1. marathonmaiden

    a very strong race for you even though you missed that 3:08. that tunnel and the silence was very reflective for me too. i'm glad that your nana was able to know that you were running in boston.

    i'm so glad i got to meet you! aaaaaaaaaaaaand VT isn't *that* far from RI…well relatively speaking i guess.

    Reply

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