April 17th, 2013

Boston Marathon Bombing (And the Lives We Lead)

Boston Marathon logo 2015I wish I could say that I was shocked by the explosions that rocked the Boston Marathon on Monday. But I wasn’t. Appalled, disgusted, and cringing for others, yes, but shocked, no.

Since 2001 I have long expected that a major road race would eventually be a target. It is, quite frankly, too easy. A 26.2 mile race course is unsecurable. Boston’s marathon has 500,00 spectators and New York has two million. Those spectators are a large part of what makes such events magnificent pieces of urban theatre.

Do the risks of such events mean that we should not create them or participate?

In 2001 the fires were still burning at the wrecked World Trade Center when 25,000 runners stormed over the Verrazano Bridge to start New York. I was one of them. If not for the attack, I would have deferred my entry due to injury. But the thought of canceling vanished from my mind when I learned the race was going forward; it was better to run slowly than not run at all.

Each of us, runner and spectator alike, knew back then that we wore bulls eyes on our shirts. Yet the crowds were as large as I’ve ever seen. It was important to both commemorate those that had been killed as well as the vitality of lives that we had.

If we want to live in a free society we have to accept such risks. The alternative is unacceptable. Since the September 11 attack I’ve run a dozen races with fields of 15,000+  in New York, Boston and Washington DC, the last of which was the Cherry Blossom 10-miler in the capital last week.

The only acceptable response is to continue on with life, to enjoy what you enjoy doing. Cowering is not an option. I don’t believe that the families of those killed and those injured would want to cede freedom to fear.

Boston Marathon finish line in the winter.
Photo credit: Me.

One point on the bombing that I did want to mention: Unless there was a certain significance to the date, I  think New York might have been the original target and that after the race was canceled due to hurricane Sandy the attack was moved to Boston.Why? Because the bombs went off at 4:09 into the race. (That time is based on the first of three waves of runners, each 20 minutes apart.)

While 4:09 would be ahead of the mid-pack of New York (average time in 2009 was 4:24), it is the back end of the pack for Boston runners. That is because the vast majority get into Boston based on strict qualifying times (average finishing time in 2010 was 3:50), while New York stresses a more democratic lottery system. One of the great allures of Boston is not just its age, but the fact that it is merit-based.

Those in the back of the pack, the ones mostly affected here, were running for charities or sponsors, who didn’t get in based on the swiftness of their legs.

The timing of the bombs is significant because they not only affect those in the immediate vicinity (mostly spectators), but they create city-wide chaos since an army of people are still running toward the spots when it happens.

Attacking the back of the Boston race is much different than attacking the front of New York. While in Boston 17,000 had already finished the race from a starting field of 23,000, in New York most would have been behind the bombing and the starting field would have been almost 50,000. Instead of six thousand Boston runners, it would have been tens of thousands of New York runners. Trying to stop such an event on the fly is a daunting concept, to say the least. And reconnecting each of these people to items that they had checked in bags at the start (hotel keys, car keys, phones to connect with family, money for transportation, etc.) would be a logistical nightmare.

On a final note, the graphic I choose to use here is not one of blood and fear, but a simple photo of the finish line that I shot in December 2008 out the hotel window of the Charlesmark Hotel that sits over the finish line. I wish to remember the excitement that leads up to running one of these races and to remember Boston as I had run it the first time.

Some psychotic(s) want to affect the rest of us by terrorism. But I’m not interested in losing my fond memories, or stopping the creation of new ones.

Remember those killed and injured. Honor them in a manner that you believe is appropriate. Then lace up the sneakers and go for a run, and live the life that you want to lead regardless of those that wish to stand in the way.


April 17th, 2012

The Boston Marathon (Highway to Hell)

Pre race mug shot - because I needed a legal angle for the blog

Yeah, it was hot out there. The average temperature for Boston this time of year is 47 degrees. And runners favor such races with temps in the high 40s – low 50s.

The temperature yesterday, however, was 87 degrees at the finish line for the 116th running of the Boston Marathon for those of us in the middle of the pack. Elsewhere it was reported to have hit 89. And that, my friends, is a whole lot of hot.

When I first wrote about the Boston Marathon in 2007 I did so to wish others well as I pined to one day run fast enough to earn my entry ticket. And when I wrote  a second time in 2009, I told my story of personal redemption after having finally qualified and run.

But this was not about redemption, or pining. There would be no eyes toward personal  bests, or running fast enough to qualify for another Boston. This was, quite simply, the meteorological luck of the draw. People had trained for months on end, had made their plans, and travelled great distances to run the premier marathon in the world that is open to amateurs.  Because after Boston in the pecking order, there is only the Olympic Trials.

And so we went, with runners going off in three waves out of the rural suburb of Hopkinton at 10:00, 10:20 and 10:40 as the the thermometer soared up to 80. Very few took up the offer of deferring until next year. There were two rules of thumb: Drink a lot and adjust your running plan, or  you would not see the finish line.

While I don’t usually take walk breaks in marathons, I knew this would be an exception. But I didn’t expect that I would take the first one after just four miles. Four miles?

And I took them every mile thereafter except for one (the last mile, which I refused to walk). I wasn’t alone, and knew if I didn’t start re-charging my batteries with those walks early on I was a candidate for the medical tent.

The odd thing about this race is that there was no sweet spot. No time to simply cruise. For most people that run this distance the first few miles are just to shake out the legs and anxiety. Miles 4-16 should be the comfort zone. Those moments never happened.

Brutal was the word for the day. When the sun disappeared for 30 seconds behind the sole cloud in the sky, a roar went up from runners and spectators alike that rippled down the course. Early on I  heard the refrain from Highway to Hell blaring from speakers. There was nothing to do but laugh.

Photo credit: Lorianne DiSabato on Flikr

The crowds were nothing less than awesome and the water sprays were out in force – firemen with hydrant attachments, homeowners with hoses, kids with spray guns.

Since the early running goes through so many small towns — Ashland, Framingham, Natick, Wellesely and Newton — before hitting the big city, the route is a constant stream of homes and villages with local parties along the way. With 500,000 spectators, this is the the biggest event in New England. And the locals were doing what they could for us. Passing out water, passing out oranges, passing out support and passing out beer. And yes, you’re damn right I took some beer. It fortified me for Heartbreak Hill, part of the hills of Newton between miles 17 and 21.

It was during those walk breaks that the crowd really played a part, as I had written my name on my shirt. This is a twofer: The crowds love knowing who is in front of them and the runner gets support. So when I was walking, the chanting would start. Sometimes solo, but sometimes large groups urging me on. And that helped snap me out of some of the longer walk breaks deep into the race.

The view of the other runners in those late stages brought to mind images of refugees trudging toward safety. I saw more people walking up Heartbreak than running it, moving forward, forward, inexorably forward.

From today’s New York Times came this interview using the word of the day:

“This was the toughest marathon I’ve ever run, and I’ve done 5 Ironmans, 3 Bostons and about 20 marathons,” said Mark Williams, 45, of Richmond, Va. He said his time was 30 minutes slower than six months ago. “It was brutal.”

And this from Jason Argent on Twitter:

My 5th #BostonMarathon a brutally rough go in 90 degree temps. 45 mins off my time last yr. Just happy to be alive after that death march.

One of the problems the race organizers had was not knowing exactly how runners would handle the heat. There isn’t a lot of real-world data on the subject of running 26 miles in those temps. One striking example was the 2007 Chicago Marathon that was cancelled mid-race due to heat, when water stops ran out of the precious liquid. (Many early runners were grabbing two or three cups and dowsing themselves, leaving the back of the pack without.) I carried backup of fluids yesterday, just in case. But water seemed plentiful, at least from my middle-of-the-pack vantage point, and I drank so much Gatorade I felt like I was being prepped for a colonoscopy.

When I did hit the finish on Boylston Street in Boston’s Back Bay section I came in about 30-35 minutes off my expected finish time. But I wasn’t disappointed, as others did the same. Adding 30-45 minutes was normal according to most people I spoke to, and that includes top local runners capable of cracking three hours in average conditions.

Few runners train in such heat. Even those in hot weather climates like Florida or Arizona are likely to train early in the morning or after the sun goes down. But mid-day, with no time to acclimate to these temperatures because this is a spring marathon and not a fall race? To quote Donald Rumsfeld:

There are known knowns. These are things we know that we know. There are known unknowns. That is to say, there are things that we know we don’t know. But there are also unknown unknowns. There are things we don’t know we don’t know.

And one thing the vast, vast majority of runners didn’t know was how we would handle the heat. It turned out that there were 2,100 runners treated for dehydration out of 22,000 starters.  As for the other 90% wondering if would could handle the heat: We can, and we did. But we might not be too keen on repeating the adventure.


And now the legal part of this post. (I have to have one, don’t I?) When athletes toe the starting line of an event, they assume the risks of competing. And that includes dealing with the weather.

My finishers medal will now be placed in a prominent spot in my trophy room. Also known as the tie rack in my closet.

For those with an interest in running and the law, once upon a time I did a Blawg Review based on the NYC Marathon.

Lastly, for those who ran Boston yesterday, this video’s for you.

My legal posts can be followed with my Twitter handle @Turkewitz, but for the running, it’s @PaineToPain.


Surviving the Boston Marathon (The New Yorker)

Boston Marathon Deferrals: Here Are the Facts (Runners World)

Boston Marathon a Battle, from Start to Finish (Tom Renner)

…Nothing in my running bag of tricks – energy gels, water, Gatorade, alternating walking and running – seemed to do much good.  The temptation to walk off crossed my mind frequently… [more at link]

Boston Marathon 2012: Mile by Mile (Mile Posts by Dorothy Beal):

You don’t hit the wall at the 8 mile mark. I knew it was the heat….Mile 21 was my first mile in the 10′s. I’m not sure the last time I saw a number in the 10′s…By Mile 23 I had started vomiting….[more at link]

RACE REPORT: Brian Adkins Finishes 2012 Boston Marathon (Marathon Brian):

…I had finished the 2012 Boston Marathon, 41 minutes slower than 2011′s performance in my first Boston run, but probably my proudest day as an athlete and event competitor….

The Boston Marathon: A Recap (I Dabble):

It was my slowest marathon to date, but is easily the one I am most proud of.

Boston 2012: The Hot One (Apple Crumbles):

…At 10K, people were already struggling. I wasn’t alone….

Race Report: Boston Marathon (Will Run for Beer):

…when I wrote on Sunday night of my revised goals for the race, I still thought I’d run a 3:20 and then come back here and be all “that was hard, but if you trust your training, you can do it.”

Instead I ran a 3:50 and honest to God considered dropping out. Of the Boston Marathon.

Lest you be wondering if the heat was really that big a deal, it was…

Too Hot to Handle: Boston Marathon Race Report (Runnrgirl’s Blog):

The first 3 miles …so i was bouncing along, pretty content for a while, and then i started feeling nauseous. i’ve battled nausea while running before so i thought it was still nerves and it would shake out as my body got used to running…the nausea led to some dry-heaving…

Boston Marathon Recap (linseyontherun):

I planned to crush the marathon.  I aimed to run my best marathon by far, shooting for a goal between 3:15 and 3:18.  That didn’t happen and normally, I’d look back on this marathon and be devastated.  This year, I feel accomplished and am still in a bit of shock over how I persevered and made it to the finish line.

Baked in Boston (Sweet Victory):

Obsessions over my pace were replaced by obsessions over the ice bags and sprinklers that the fans of Boston had all over the course. I’d heard it before and now I know it’s true: these are the best marathon fans in the world. I ran from ice bag to ice bag, through sprinklers and hoses, doing everything possible to keep my core cool…

My Boston Marathon Lesson: Remember the Goal (Dan Taylor):

I finished my first Boston Marathon yesterday and want to capture the most important lesson I learned from that experience.

Although I learned the lesson in the excruciating heat of the Boston Marathon I know for me it’s a lesson that I’ll carry over into other parts of my life…

What NOT Running the Boston Marathon Taught Me (Run Brit Run):

Not running on Monday was one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever had to make. For 5 months, my life was training for Boston. Everything I did was planned around training runs. I barely went out, I spent an abnormal amount of time with my foam roller, and when people asked what my weekend plans were the response was always how long my long run was that week. Giving up the culmination of all of that hard work crushed me….

xx will update with good blogs posts as they are found xx


April 15th, 2010

Good Luck Boston Marathoners

We interrupt this law blog to bring you a special report. Here now, coming to you live from his desktop…

To those running the 114th edition of the Boston Marathon this coming Monday, I wish you good luck and cool temperatures.

For those of you that don’t know, it is the oldest annual marathon in the world and the only one other than the Olympic Trials that has qualifying times to gain admittance. It is, in the minds of many, the Holy Grail of long distance running.

But I not only wish you luck, but hope that you’ll have as good a time as I did last year during this 26.2 mile long party. My recap from last year, to get you in the proper mood:

Boston Marathon (Drinking Beer, Kissing Wellesley Women and Abstract Journeys)

For those who are running, or seeking inspiration for a future attempt, a few extra links:

  • Martin Duffy: The End of an Unintended 40-Year Boston Streak:

    …Life is a little like the Boston Marathon. It is an allegory from bucolic Hopkinton through Natick, Wellesley and Newton to the City on the Hill, Boston. And in the beginning, you get lulled by its ease. From Hopkinton Green, the course opens downhill. It starts easy — maybe way too easy. And so you overdo and thrill in the fast miles. The hills and the challenges are down the road and way in the future…

  • The Allure of the BQ: Why the Boston Marathon Keeps Me Running:

    …I get asked from time to time what makes Boston such a pinnacle for runners. My answer is simple: it’s a pinnacle because it’s hard. There’s no lottery, and you can’t simply just sign-up for the race. You need to earn your way there, and that is exactly what I’m determined to do…

  • Boston Preview: Updates:

    Since last week, there have been several significant changes to the Boston elite start list…

  • Last-Minute Advice for Boston Marathoners:

    Nothing but strength and determination will help Boston Marathon hopefuls get over Heartbreak Hill on April 19. But this roundup of tips from runners who’ve braved the the famous marathon may provide some last-minute ideas that will help your overall race-day strategy..


April 21st, 2009

Boston Marathon (Drinking Beer, Kissing Wellesley Women and Abstract Journeys)

(Amtrak – northbound, April 18) Every adventure starts with a journey. As I leave my wife and kids behind I experience that rarest of moments — leaving town by myself when it isn’t for business. As the steel wheels rumble underneath me heading north toward Boston, I slip on the iPod and tune in Arlo:

Riding on the City of New Orleans,
Illinois Central Monday morning rail
Fifteen cars and fifteen restless riders,
Three conductors and twenty-five sacks of mail.

(Hynes Convention Center, Boston, MA, April 19) – I pick up my race bib and can’t believe I have it in my hands. I ran my first marathon in 1994, but it wasn’t until 2007 that I ran fast enough to qualify for this race. Boston is the only marathon that requires a qualifying time, other than the Olympics and the Trials. I’d only dreamed of it. I thank the woman for volunteering and tell her it took me a decade to get that little package she just handed me.

(Athletes Village, Hopkington, MA, April 20) I’ve gone through my pre-race checklist: Vaseline on the feet, taped nipples, peanut butter, chocolate and banana sandwiches. Empty the bladder. Then do it again. I go through the course map in my head.

But what am I doing here? When I was a kid, I suffered repeated injuries in 7th, 8th and 9th grades. While everyone else moved forward athletically, I went backwards. I strove for mediocrity.

And now I’m with 25,000 people getting ready to run the Boston Marathon, representing at this moment the largest and most concentrated collection of physically fit people on the planet. As well as the largest single concentration of nervous energy. From every state and from 85 different nations. I’m not worthy. I try to rest under a huge tent in the morning chill, but end out walking around. Pacing.

(Start Line, Hopkington, MA) Each corral has 1,000 runners. I’m in the 11th, corresponding to my bib, #11228. The crowd surges and stops, surges and stops as we make our way to the start, which we reach six minutes after the gun. But we will be timed by the electronic chips tied to our shoes, so it doesn’t matter. I shed the disposable warm-ups I brought with me, bought for a few bucks at Salvation Army for just this purpose, to be recylced to a charity (along with thousands of others) after the race. The finish line on Boylston Street is 26.2 miles away.

(Natick, MA) I’m supposed to grab a beer from a former blogger I know at mile 8.2 after entering Natick, but we miss each other. The early miles, after a quad-trashing downhill start, run through Ashland and Framingham and are an easy cruise, with the smells of grilling meat and popping corn wafting by as music blares from this place and that. The residents are having a blast as we pass marathon party after marathon party, as they sit in comfy lounge chairs screaming for total strangers. With my name on my shirt, I’m personally cheered thousands of times during the race.

I’m not looking to break any personal records or kill myself on this rolling course. The hard part is qualifying. The race is dessert. I merrily slap many of the outstretched hands of children lining the course, who treat us middle-of-the-packers like professional athletes. It took too long to get here and I just want to enjoy it all. But I did want that promised beer from the former blogger and I’m bummed that I missed it. But then, salvation! A frat-like group is handing out beer cups on the way out of Natick at around mile 11. And I grab a few ounces.

(Wellesley, MA) – The Wellesley College “scream tunnel” near the 13 mile mark can be heard 1/4 mile away. The women are standing on the barricades, cheek to jowl, leaning into the race, screaming for kisses and holding up imploring signs. Who am I to disappoint them? Was it six that I kissed? Eight? Ten? Another runner and I contemplate circling back for more. As one other blogger noted:

They were 2 and three deep and every third or fourth one held a sign of some sort. For about 300 yards it was the largest gathering of nothing but college women I’d ever seen. But that was not what was most striking. It was the signs. Most of them read things like “Kiss me I’m a first year”, “Kiss me I’m a senior”, “Kiss me I’m from New Hampshire”, and even “Only Kiss me if you’re a girl”. Was it a joke? No. The guys who were sprinting by me were kissing multiple women as they ran. They’d stop, kiss, run, kiss another. It was classic.

(Heartbreak Hill, Newton) — Still running with ease as I am joined by my nephew near mile 17. He stays to the center away from the water and Gatorade so as not to get in the way or consume runner resources. As we get closer to Boston, the towns get bigger, the crowds thicker. Heartbreak Hill is at miles 20-21, the last in a long series of hills in Newton.
Thankfully, I find more beer being passed out at the base of the last, and largest, hill. Beer never tasted so good. Thus fortified, we ascend Heartbreak toward Boston College. And my nephew drops out at a pre-arranged spot to jump on local transit and meet me later in the family reunion area.

(Brookline, MA) After passing Boston College at mile 21, the crowds thicken more as the terrain turns definitively urban. It heads downhill and my quads scream at me for relief. I’m distracted by Wonder Woman running near me. Folks have stopped yelling my name, because they have a much more interesting runner. But I can’t catch her, just as I can’t catch the Hooters girl or Richard Whitehead running on prosthetic legs.

I hit Beacon Street and am heading into downtown Boston. Ahead of me is Kenmore Square and the giant Citgo sign, one mile from the finish. I will finish this race. Even if I have to crawl it in. But I need not crawl. The crowds carry me along, and I in turn, whoop and holler back at the crowds, as we feed on each other. It is energy well spent. For without the spectators, it wouldn’t be the same. They are an integral part of this spectacular show.

(Boylston Street, Boston MA) — Last winter I stayed at the Charlesmark Hotel on Boylston Street. My room overlooked the snow-covered finish line, and I took the picture you see here.

The scene now looks altogether different as I turn from Commonwealth Avenue onto Hereford Street and then onto Boylston, thick with Bostonians several people deep on both sides of the road.

I see the finish line ahead, with a temporary bridge over the street to hold the cameras and press. Through the exhaustion I ham it up once more for the crowds, again waving in an up swept motion to get them louder and louder. I raise my arms up in advance of the finish line.

I want a good finisher’s photo for my wall.

(Finishers Chute, Boston, MA) — My pace slows to a crawl, along with everyone else. Each step a painful effort. It will take 20-30 minutes for runners to meet up with family as we move from station to station through the recovery area. Water. Gatorade. Food. Heat shields. Chip removal. Medals. Baggage. Change to warm, dry clothes that we had checked onto dozens of buses at the start. I find my brother and his family, with whom I have stayed, in the reunion area. I pick up an over-priced souvenir running jacket with the race logo on it. I’ll wear it in the old folks home decades from now so the attendants will know that I once did more than wheel myself around babbling incoherently.

(Amtrak, southbound, April 20) — My brother drives me to the train after I shower and eat at his place. We arrive at the station at the same time the train does. I jump in and grab a seat. Drop my bags and hit the bar car. Grab a Sam Adams and head back to my seat.

I think about the race and the extraordinary logistics. I think about the new half marathon trail race I’m organizing in the ‘burbs of NYC and wonder what I can do to make it better.

I feel the wheels rumbling ‘neath the seat as the car gently sways and dusk settles in. I pick up the iPod and, like I try to do at the start of all journeys, put on a little traveling music:

Nighttime on The City of New Orleans,
Changing cars in Memphis, Tennessee.
Half way home, we’ll be there by morning
Through the Mississippi darkness
Rolling down to the sea.
And all the towns and people seem
To fade into a bad dream
And the steel rails still ain’t heard the news.
The conductor sings his song again,
The passengers will please refrain
This train’s got the disappearing railroad blues.

In one sense this was 26.2 mile journey. In another it was a three-day weekend. In yet another sense it started in 1994 when I finished my first marathon and I realized that I had never tested my physical limits. And in another sense the journey started in 7th grade when I ground to a halt athletically while my peers surged forward.

But after long efforts I finally qualified for one of the most prestigious races in the world. I toed the line at Hopkinton and arrived on Boylston Street. I ran Boston.

This post took me an hour or two to write, but it took me years to get here.

And if you want more about what it’s like inside a marathon, read below. And feel free to send along links to others…

  • The iPhone app that ran the Boston Marathon (Geek.com):

    Common sights for marathon watchers include runners fainting, losing all control of their nervous system and the spontaneous evacuation of bowels. It’s a fun sport.

  • Agony and Ecstasy: Running the 113th Boston Marathon: (O’Malley On the Web)

    The first three miles are pretty much downhill, then the hills start towards the middle and the end. Down, up, down. The marathon route is like the Dow Jones Industrial Average. Hopkinton is like the recession of 1990. The four Newton Hills are like the end of the Clinton administration where everyone got rich. Boylston Street is like the current fiscal climate.

I live close to mile 24 of the Boston Marathon and when I’m in town I love to go watch it. Today I was there for more than an hour, from just before the elite runners arrived till the first part of the main group came through.

  • Boston Marathon:

    It wasn’t my fastest or my slowest, but it was one of the most enjoyable and satisfying marathons I’ve ever run.

  • The Race (Ben’s Boston Marathon Blog) – A view of the race from close to the front, instead of the middle of the pack
  • Boston Marathon — epilogue (A Bold Pace — Running for Our Lives):

    Mile 20.5: A flash of grace; an announcement, “You have just passed Heartbreak Hill, the hills are finished.” I pass the very festive and upbeat Boston College crowd. Time to celebrate with an Advil and Double Latte GU!

  • Post Mortem (MattFitzgerald.org)

    My goal going into Monday’s Boston Marathon was to run 2:35. I ran 3:18. That’s a spectacular failure. Either my goal was absurdly unrealistic or something really major must have gone wrong, right? Wrong.

  • Boston Marathon Re-Cap (Obesity Panacea):

    Waiting for the start-gun, you could see thousands of people in every direction, fighter planes zooming overhead, and of course smell the strange mix of excitement, fear, and Gatorade that you find among people minutes before starting a marathon.

  • Boston Marathon: Running against the wind (The Ultra) Marathon Life:

    I headed under the tunnel, urging myself forward, feeling nothing but good, but still feeling like I didn’t have another gear. Emerging from the tunnel, I just let the crowd carry me. I have never felt such a feeling of having a crowd cheer you on. And for me, it really was just for me as there was no one with me. I turned right on Hereford Street, then left on Boylston, the massive crowds swelling against the railings. They cheered and cheered, but went wild when I raised my hands like a cheerleader flapping indicating raising the volume. I was encouraging them and so they went crazy. That felt pretty cool. I drained every ounce and sprinted to the finish line, crossing the mat in 2:53:20. Not a bad days work.

  • The Boston Marathon…(Lil Runner):

    Lots of college students out, many drinking and offering beer, and overly excited , due to the beer consumption, to get high fives. Wellesley looked really pretty and was filled with lots of girls holding up free kisses signs of all kinds. I watched an older fellow walk up to a girl and get a kiss. Probably made his day!

  • What is it like to run the Boston Marathon for the 1st Time? (Run to Win: Marathoning Made Simple):

    I was ready for this and I knew it. I believed in my training, and in how far I had come… there was no way I could wait any longer. This was the day I had to put it all out there. It was time to shine.

  • What is it Like to Run the Boston Marathon From the 1st Corral? (Run to Win: Marathoning Made Simple):

    A big, burly old timer volunteer in a BAA jacket was walking around introducing himself to every runner, “What’s your name? Where you from? Have you run Boston before? Well good luck, sonny.” The answers were more interesting than the questions…Ireland, Minnesota, Manitoba, Japan…The first corral is like the coolest fucking club on earth….until the elites come out. When they walked along the side of our corral to take their place in front of us, the cheers started coming out: “Go HALL!, Go HALL!, HALL, Go Ryan, bring it home! HALL!!” It was pretty cool. A little pomp, national anthem, Air Force flyover and, shit, the gun.

Links to this post:

blawg review #210
half-wracked prejudice leaped forth “rip down all hate,” i screamed. lies that life is black and white. spoke from my skull. i dreamed. romantic facts of musketeers. foundationed deep, somehow. ah, but i was so much older then,

posted by @ May 04, 2009 1:26 PM
the carnival of running #27
if you’ve never seen the episode of nova where coaches at tufts take 12 people off the coach and train them for the boston marathon, it’s available on hulu and well worth your time just for the stuff about how your physiology adapts to

posted by Mike @ April 29, 2009 11:16 AM
a non-race report; ny?; more photos!
until last night, i planned on running the rye derby today. the temperature for today was expected to reach 88, although it actually got to 91. i was still ok with it, until i read of someone dying at the nashville half-marathon.
posted by joegarland @ April 26, 2009 8:52 PM


April 16th, 2007

And The Boston Marathon Is Off And Running….

This has nothing to do with New York Personal Injury Law. But I’m a runner, and this is my blog, so that’s that.

The nor’easter that deluged New York yesterday is swamping Boston today for the 111th running of the race.

At the marathon start, wind gusts hitting 50 pmh. Much of the staging area is underwater. Temps in the 40s and heavy rain predicted.

It’s going to be epic. There’s nothing like a foul weather run to put the zest back in your step (that’s me on a trail run, at right).

May the winds be at their backs…