Wednesday, April 16, 2014

#BostonStrong

Yesterday marked the first anniversary of the tragedy that happened at the 2013 Boston Marathon.  I have never ran Boston however I vividly remember when the news broke about the bombings and the frantic scramble to get in touch with or hear any news about my friends who were on the course that day.  I remember the palpable sadness of the running community and I also remember how runners all over the world rallied to show an unbelievable display of strength, resilience, determination, support and love.


I didn't feel right letting the day pass without doing something in memory of the lives that were lost that day, in honor of all those who were affected by those tragic events, and in celebration of the indomitable spirit of the running community.  At 2:49 PM ET (11:49 AM PT), I joined Boston and the world in a moment of silence.  Then I proceeded to meet my friends Eva, Brian and Chris at noon for a 4.25 mile run.  Since I have never ran Boston I decided to wear my Chicago Marathon race shirt since it is the only world marathon major that I have run thus far.

Our run started on trail which was a combination of hard packed dirt, rocks, and really loose, soft, fine dirt/sand.  I am not a trail runner so the beginning of the run was a real challenge for me especially since we were running on an uphill from the very start and it was really warm and humid out (for our area at least).  After about a mile of trail we hit the 3 B's.  The 3 B's are three consecutive hills that get progressively steeper as you climb.  There is no flat or descent in between the hills, it's just constant climbing.  They are gnarly!  I haven't ran the 3 B's in about 2 years so it was a rude awakening when I started my climb.  I forgot how hard they were!  Once we reached the summit there was a round of high fives and a quick breather before we headed back out on our run.  What goes up must come down and boy do I love a good downhill after a hard climb!

Whew! Made it to the top.  That's the Monterey bay in the background.

Most of the run back was on pavement so that was a welcome relief for this non-trail runner.  We did get back on the trail for the last little bit of the run but by then I had caught my breath and my legs were loosened up so it wasn't nearly as difficult to run as it was on the way out.  I also made a mental note to run more trails.  It's an entirely different skillset than running on pavement.

After one last little climb on the the trail we were done and exchanging another round of high fives.  Within seconds of exclaiming how hard the hills were we planning on when to meet up to tackle the 3 B's again.  Oh runners!  We're all such gluttons for punishment.

My partners in crime: Eva, Brian and Chris

Once I showered I immediately put on my Boston Strong shirt to wear for the rest of the day.  It's my absolute favorite tshirt and my amazing friend Michele (a.k.a. Thepinkhatrunner) brought it back for me all the way from Boston at the official finish line store.  Although I have yet to qualify for or run Boston, I wear my shirt with pride for everything that it symbolizes and stands for.  I'm more bound and determined to someday get that BQ and toe the starting line at the Boston Marathon.  I run. And I remember.


P.S. I ended my day watching the Spirit of the Marathon for the umpteenth time.  As always, I was jumping up and down screaming at the screen as I watched every runner run towards that finish line.  And as always I may have shed a tear or two.  The emotions are so palpable it's almost like I'm there.

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