If you were super bored over the last week, you might have read my last post, and know my ultimate running goal is the Boston Marathon. But the last post may have left you on the edge of your seat wondering "Why?".
Well, friends, it's pretty simple: you can't simply register for the Boston Marathon like the majority of other races, including marathons. For 99% of the races out there, you register online, pay your fee and you're off to the races (literally and figuratively) in your brand new t-shirt and finisher's medal.
But the Boston Marathon requires you to run a qualifying time based on your age (it's broken down into 5 year age groups). To top it off, there's more: even if you run your qualifying time (or Boston Qualifier, or "BQ"), you still may not get in the race. For example, I would have to run a 3:10 marathon (or better) at a qualifying race for the current requirements. But, depending on how fast the rest of the field registering that year is, there's an adjusted time because they only allow a certain number of runners. So, if the field is running at an average of 2 minutes faster than their qualifying time, then that means I now have to run a 3:08. A pain in the butt, right?
Back to the "why"; for starters, I'm still pretty pissed about the bombing in 2013. Running in Boston is, for me, the running equivalent to me giving the middle finger to those two a-holes that decided to injure and kill a bunch of innocent people. I've walked on Boylston and stood at the spots where the two bombs went off. Whether I'm justified in thinking this or not, I feel like that was an attack on the running community at large.
Also, there's the simple matter of qualifying. Yes, there are a lot of people that are quite a bit faster than me, but running a 3:10 marathon is still not easy. I like to go hard from the gun, so settling in and holding back is hard for me. To be able to say that I've achieved that feat and have qualified for one of the most, if not the most, prestigious races in the world, will be something that I can be proud of for the rest of my life.
Having traveled to Boston to watch the marathon in person, there's really nothing in the running community that I've witnessed that comes close to the same feeling this event exudes. Ashley and I lined up on Boylston St. at the 26 mile mark and watched runners and wheelchair racers come down the home stretch for four hours. It was incredible. The pride that city has in that race is second to none. The passion Bostonians show for this race is unparalleled.
I could list off a dozen more reasons I want to do this, but you've probably already fallen asleep. But to be able to walk around the city wearing a Boston Marathon jacket, with that medal around my neck, would be pretty damn cool. Having my family there to watch me do it would be even better. That's if I don't drop a log in my shorts from too much excitement. But, hey, I would have just ran the Boston Marathon, and at that point, I would have earned the right to shit my pants. ;)