A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Planning Ahead- Boston 2014!

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A few things about me...
  1. I am a huge planner.
  2. I love to plan.
  3. Making lists is fun.
  4. Scratching things off my to do list is fun.
  5. My life feels more organized and manageable if I have lists and calendars keeping me on track.
At the Harrisburg Marathon this past November, I qualified for the Boston Marathon. Because of the date I qualified, I ended up being eligible to run Boston in 2013 and 2014. There were a few reasons running it in 2013 was not going to be feasible...
  1. Registration for the 2013 Boston Marathon was already filled.
  2. I didn't have enough personal days to take the time off I needed.
  3. We needed more time to save up enough money to make the trip (running the marathon alone is $150, then add in travel expenses... yikes!)
**Obviously, saying I am “glad” I couldn't run it in 2013 is an understatement. And this is not going to be a post about the horrible attacks that occurred on that day. The reason? The finish line of a marathon is supposed to be one of the most joyous places there is. When I think of the Boston Marathon, or any marathon, I want to remember them for what they are supposed to be- a celebration of the human endurance and spirit. As it is now, if you do a Google image search for “Boston Marathon”, the first thousand images or so are of the bombing. That is sad. I'm not trying to deny it happened. I immersed myself in the coverage and grieved along with the rest of the country. I guess I just want to look forward. And no, I'm not scared to run it in 2014. I am scared of snakes.**

The sign that hung just outside Athletes' Village at the 2009 Boston Marathon.
This is the last thing we saw as we left the village and headed for the starting line.
I can't read it without choking up.

So 2014 is going to be my year to run Boston! I never thought I'd be able to run it again so soon. The first time I ran Boston was in 2009. I had to do some serious training to reach the qualifying standard for a woman in my age group. I needed to run a 3:40:00, and I managed to squeak out a 3:38:56 at the Philadelphia Marathon. Talk about cutting it close! Some runners are just naturally fast, and qualifying for Boston is something they can do without any training. I had some work to do. But I did it, and it paid off!

Philly 2008- Chris and I just BQ'ed!
If I look like I was in pain it's because I was hurtin' for certain!
Let's just say there were some tears during the last few miles...
Hey, it's not a beauty contest!
Chris looks like a million bucks, though!

Within the past few years, the Boston Athletic Association lowered the qualifying standards. A woman my age now needs a 3:35:00. A year or two ago, I didn't think a time like that was attainable for me. I was more into running trail, and running LONG, not fast. I figured I would qualify again, but not until I was a little older and the qualifying times were slower. (Example: A forty-five year old woman only needs to run a 3:55:00 to qualify.)

But a few changes in my eating and exercise habits led me to running a 3:28:08. Here is what I attribute this PR & BQ (Boston Qualifier) to:

1. Running less miles but at a faster pace.
2. Running routes with a lot of hills.
3. Eating better.
4. Weight training.
5. Tempo runs.

Why am I thinking about Boston so much? Because yesterday, I booked our hotel room for marathon weekend! I know it's not until April, but I told you I liked to plan, remember? Also, I found a really good deal, and I didn't want it to get snatched up and end up having to pay $350 a night for a hotel room... in which case I would NOT be making the trip!

We're staying for four nights to ensure we get to have a nice relaxing time. Here's a few things I want to make sure we do...

1. Go to a ballgame at Fenway Park
2. Walk the Freedom Trail
3. Get a drink at Beer Works - we ate there the first time we visited Boston 7 years ago, so it's nostalgic.
4. Meet up with my cousin who lives up there. (Hey Alex!)
5. Enjoy the waterfront... maybe dine with a view?
6. Do a short run along the Charles River on Saturday Morning.

And now some pictures from Boston, 2009! 

**I am very thankful I got to run in this race. I was never athletic as a kid. This just shows if you want something and you work for it, it can happen! Your past does not define you! 
Don't let anyone tell you that you can't do something because THEY ARE WRONG!** 

School busses took us from downtown Boston to a field in Hopkinton- 26.2 miles away.
We would hang out here, in Athletes' Village until the race started.

Unfortunately we boarded the busses around 7am and our wave didn't start until 10:30am.
Time for a short nap!

We took our time and took pictures during the race!

At the top of Heart Break Hill.
It was nothing. Running in Central PA is great training for Heartbreak "Hill".

Is there anything else you think we should do while we are in Boston?

Do you like to make lists and plan?

What have you done that you had to work VERY hard for?

1 comment:

  1. You go girl, tears stream down my cheeks, with the honor I feel just having known you. And you were always an athlete, you just did not want to acknowledge it back in the day. Love to you and your family always. Thanks to Peach for forwarding this blog to my email. It was actually the first blog that I ever read. I didn't realize they were this well written. june baker