So. Finally. After 37 years of running, I was going to run Boston. After Twin Cities I had knee and ankle problems and didn't run much for 3 months. I was able to get back in gear by January, but I didn't have enough time to get into top marathon shape. But good enough to run it and enjoy my victory lap.
This is a little long. I broke it into 3 posts originally, but will put them all together here.
Act 1: Meeting and hanging out with Loopsters
Act 2: The race
Act 3: After the race
on Friday, DW and I took off over the Pacific, banged a left u-turn,
and made for the Atlantic. Five hours later we were landing in Boston to
start the dream-come-true trip (for me anyway. DW said this weekend was
all about me and subjugated any desires of her own. Love that lady.)
The flight was full of runners, which, as you know, are pretty easy to
spot. Boston jackets helped.
We were a little late, and
took a cab directly to the first loop meetup, at a bar right next to our
houseboat. We dragged our bags to the back and found a table of
and MTF (Maranda), Whitey102 (Mike), Chris and TOSuperstar, Joe and
Lauren, QuickRunna24 (Nicole), Bookerman (Scott), and me. It was nice to
meet some new people, including our Boston area hosts, Lauren and
Scott. Sampled the local Sam Adams draft a few times and called it a
We stayed at a rental houseboat with TO and his
dear wife Chris. It rocked a little that first night since a storm had
just passed through, but it was perfectly fine and a great option for
Saturday we slept late and then took the T (subway) to
the expo. I felt like a kid at Christmas picking up my bib and shirt,
and then buying my Boston Marathon jacket. Very proud and excited and
soaking in the awesomeness. Unlike other expos (like LA), every runner
there was a serious fast runner, and it definitely lent a different
vibe. Like we were all special.
The booth area was very
crowded and was basically like other expos, although bigger and better.
My favorite part was a little theater area where we watched the course
video which was interspersed with interviews. It was a great summary of
the course, the history, the momentousness of the race. And even my DW
(who knows very little running history) was getting excited about it. I
was fighting back tears often during the video (and all weekend, who am I
kidding). Soon I would be running through these famous landmarks.
the expo we walked the 3 blocks down Boylston to the finish line which
was closed to traffic and everyone was taking pictures. We also had some
random loop meetups. JJ (26.2) found me in the expo, and I met up with
Mr. Andante who happened to be in town. We also ran into Dean on the
Sat on the finish line, and said "See you later".
and it is not a loopfest until Bangle kisses somebody...
Pre-race BP for luck?
night, Tom and I and our wives walked the North End which has over 100
Italian restaurants. And they were all full with wait lists! Runners
were everywhere. Yet somehow we found a nice one and got a table with no
wait. Had to sit outside which was a little cool, but it was great
food, and really fun.
also were told to get some cannolis at Mike's bakery, but there was a
line down the street! So we put that off until it was less crazy.
Instead we walked back to Faneuil Hall and met up with JJ and Whitey,
and a certain speedy Pittsburgher that I had been looking forward to
that is Lady Capulet herself. She and her DH were a pleasure to meet.
One more amazing loopster - it seemed each one had their own story of
how they got to Boston. Of course, having read all of their blogs
earlier, I not only felt like I knew them, but I could appreciate what
it meant for each of them to be here in Boston.
One or two more drinks and we called it a night.
Sunday we headed back into the North End and saw Paul Revere's house and picked up some cannolis.
Corcorama arrived in town and moved in to the boat with us. I had met
Erin in Philly, but it was great to see her again and hang out with a
like-minded cynic. And then we walked over to do the Boston Duck Tour.
More Loop Meets as we met Chicago Phil and BlairBear. I remember rooting
for Phil and advising him as he trained for and got his BQ just in time
to get into this race, so it was great to meet him. Then we enjoyed a
very funny (and educational) tour of Boston by land and sea. Bonus - I
got to meet the famous Juju. She lived up to her reputation as adorable.
there we walked straight back to Faneuil Hall for the Loop Carbo-load
dinner at Bertucci's. More loopmeets, food, drinks, photos and fun. We
spent over 2 hours there and had time to move around and talk with
everybody. We also had a surprise special guest as Senior Runner and DW
arrived! SR made a little toast to all the runners, and we all felt like
someone sprinkled holy water on us or something.
Bonnie777 and her new baby!
Whitey and Chicago Phil
JJ and SR
TO and Quick Runna
Me and SR
Me and QR
TO, MTF, QR
Maranda and her soon to be husband Ken
Me, Corc and JJ
QR, her DH and Brother Elias
Eventually we wrapped it up and some of us went to a little pub for one more round.
Me and the Monk! Great to meet you, Elias!
night came and it was lights out at 9:15, but I had my usual pre-race
insomnia and tossed and turned until after 12. Probably slept about 4
hours total and was up before 5. Race day! Here we are inside the boat
as dawn arrived. Time to head over to the T and run the Boston
Next: Episode 11 - New York (2014)