Oh jeez, where do I even begin? Let’s start out by saying the Boston Marathon far exceeded my expectations. I had the time of my life and loved every (hot) second of it.
To be honest, I was terrified of the heat. Each day I tracked the weather, the hotter and hotter it became. I was fearful of a DNF (even though I never DNF’d before). The heat is sneaky. It creeps up on you and before you know it, you’re in the medical tent and getting a ride to the finish line.
I wasn’t about to DNF in Boston. I wanted to run a smart race, enjoy myself, and finish!
I hate lengthy race recaps so here are the highlights:
- I was sweating before the race even started! The sun was brutal and the course offered no shade.
- I decided to run by feel and started out at 8:45-9:00 pace, knowing I would slow down pretty soon. I was feeling good, enjoying the crowds in Hopkinton, and taking it all in.
- My stomach started to feel a little queasy around mile 4. I knew it was from the heat (I had a similar experience last summer). I just tried to ignore it.
- The spectators were AMAZING! They doused us with water and handed out ice cubes. I would not have survived the race without their support.
- After mile 10, I slowed down significantly. I happily walked through every single water stop, filling up my water bottle. A few miles later, I allowed myself to walk when I needed to.
- It’s funny to see so many runners walking so early on during a marathon. This is going to sound cheesy but I felt a kinship, like we’re all in this together.
- The Wellesley girls did not disappoint. I heard them cheering at mile 12. Since all the runners were enjoying the “experience” (the B.A.A. refused to call it a race but instead used the term “experience”), I think they got many kisses on Monday. Sweaty kisses, that is.
- When we entered Newton, I remember thinking “OK, here come the hills”. I didn’t think they were that bad, although I was running so slow. If I was trying to maintain MP up them, I’m sure my tune would be different.
- Heartbreak Hill is not that bad. It’s just a long climb at the worst time (between mile 20-21).
- The Boston College kids were great. So drunk, but so encouraging.
- After mile 21, I felt like I was going downhill all the time. Again, my perception of the course is a little skewed because of my slow pace.
- Best sign? “Honey badger don’t care about the heat”. Hysterical.
- Other than being hot (obviously) I felt OK around mile 22. My stomach settled down, my legs felt good, and all the ice and frequent douses with water were keeping me somewhat cool. I was having fun!
- I knew I’d see my family and friends around Mile 25, so I started to count down the miles until then.
- Surprisingly, I wasn’t too emotional when I saw them (dehydration = no tears?). I stopped, chatted, got some last words of encouragement, and moved along.
Oh, hey there
- The next 1.2 miles were incredible. I think I had a smile plastered on my face the entire time. The crowds got even deeper and louder.
- Making a right onto Hereford and a left onto Boylston was the best part of the race. I felt like I was on the red carpet.
- I just tried to soak up every last bit of it during the final stretch on Boylston. Before I knew it, I crossed the finish line and became a Boston Marathoner!
My official time was 4:33:50. That’s my 4th slowest marathon ever but I have never been prouder. I walked a lot (more than my first marathon!) and I was just so happy to finish strong (and not visit the medical tent).
I have so many people to thank. My family and friends that made the trip up to Boston to see me – Matt, my parents, Karyn, Aidan, Michelle, Paul, Charlotte, Neil, Mr. and Mrs. G – it means the world to me that you were there.
For everyone who sent congrats and words of encouragement via Twitter, FB, text, and email – I read each and every message and it meant so much to me. Thank you.
I definitely want to do Boston again. Get another shot at the course on a much cooler day and race it. But for now, I’m just so happy and plan on riding this out for awhile!
If you’re interested, I posted all my Boston pics on FB.
Congrats! Sounds like you still had a fabulous experience! Way to take it all in. In some ways this years racers probably had better experiences than most years because without expectations they just got to enjoy the ride. I’m sure you will be back to race it 🙂
Congratulations!!!! Wow, I was right with you at the finish – and a lot of what you described seems to be most runners’ stories.
So glad you finished and had a good Boston Marathon experience! Nice work 🙂
Holly @ Pink-Runner.com says
I’ve been waiting for your recap!! So glad it was a great experience for you! I was worried and checked your bib # all day! 🙂
Congrats congrats!!! Your race sounds so similar to mine. It was brutal out there but amazing at the same time. It was a day I will never forget but when I was out there I wanted to just be over. I totally agree about the turns onto Hereford and then to Boylston. My calves were cramping so bad at that point but I felt like I was flying. Seriously, 5 minutes of my life that will always bring a smile to my face and I will never forget. And yes, I definitely hope to see you again at another race. When I saw you yesterday, I was feeling kinda yucky and a simple hello really brought a smile to my face. Congrats again and I definitely think you need to come back for revenge on this course!
Lora @ Crazy Running Girl says
Congrats!!! I agree that the spectators were AMAZING… there was no way we would have finished w/o them!! Great job listening to your body and enjoying the race. There will be another Boston, one with perfect temps that we can all PR at! 🙂 Congrats again!
Love it! Love that you enjoyed the experience and that you looked so darn happy and fabulous at mile 25 and at the finish! Holy crap that’s a lot of cups in the street. Was it that messy on the whole course? Would it even be possible to race through all that and with all the people?
Hurry up and sign up for an early Fall marathon and BQ again so we can race it together next year! 🙂
CONGRATS!!!! Way to race smart in the heat!
Beth @ RUNNING around my kitchen says
Congratulations, sounds like an incredible experience!!!! Way to push through and stay strong!
Abby @ Have Dental Floss, Will Travel says
Been looking forward to reading this! Sounds like it was a great experience – because you made it a great experience by backing off original expectations and just letting the day take you where it did. Can’t wait to hear more during our run next week!
Congrats! I looked at your FB pics, too–they are great. Love the one of you sitting on the finish line and also all the signs that your family had made were really special!
Hope you enjoyed a Blizzard, too!!!
Kristy, you are amazing. Congratulations on such a huge accomplishment and great day. I felt the same way as a spectator, in that everyone was in it together. What an awesome experience. Hope you’re recovering well and getting some well deserved rest!!
Yay, congrats, Kristy! So glad you enjoyed yourself so much despite the heat! You were so smart about it! And like someone else said, I’m sure you will be back to race it! I keep getting teary when I read about the spectators and how wonderful they were. Man, do I love marathons. 🙂 Great job!!!!! 🙂
Congrats! I’m really happy you enjoyed yourself Monday. I think the crowds and the BAA’s excellent organizational skills made all the difference, turning what could have been hellish into a wonderful day. There were tons of people who were not able to finish strong so you clearly did a great job adapting your strategy to the conditions.
Congrats!!! I definitely think you played it smart and took the right attitude! Heat can be so brutal, especially when you aren’t heat conditioned. I’m proud of you for having a good time! Finishing that race was no joke! I had a friend who passed out, ended up in the medical tent, but was determined to finish and did so in 6:31 (she did boston in 3:36 last year, to give you an idea). CRAZY HEAT! Congrats, again!
I LOVE your big happy smile at the end! It sounds like you ran a really smart race (experience!) on Monday and were able to get so much out of the day. Fantastic that you had that cheering crew up there!
I loved B.C. this year, too. I don’t remember them being so much fun last time I did it–I think they were as much fun as Wellesley this year.
And I agree–could NOT have done it w/o the extra support from spectators!
Wow, that was slow! Haha, I’m just kidding! I’m so proud that you ran smart and didn’t hurt yourself trying to stick to the race plan! Next year you’re going to dominate it!
Is it weird that I pretty much teared up reading this post?!? I am so proud of you. I watched you run NJ Marathon, BQ on 9/11 TRAIN your ass off and run Boston. I have to say, I kept stalking you — FB and on here because I got kind of worried. LOL But then I thought, “She must have Twitter” — So I found you and phew… you FINISHED and you were just fine enjoying yourself, I’m sure wearing that medal all day (and I hope the rest of the week) long. You look gorgeous in your pictures!
This sounds like such an awesome experience! I can totally tell that you were just living it up! Congrats on finishing the race! : )
COngratulations! The race sounds like a lot of fun! I’m so glad that you enjoyed it!
Comgrats!!! I LOVE all your signs – that photo with your family and all the signs, so great!! You look so happy 🙂
Congrats on running a smart race and making the best of brutal conditions. Boston is a hard course under ideal conditions, I can only imagine how tough it was out there. Definitely go back! : )
This sounds just PERFECT! I am so happy for you and proud that you were so smart and just enjoyed it as a hot and humid victory lap.
Many congrats!!! You rock! Rest well and be proud!
Congratulations! So happy for your awesome race and great experience.
Dying to know though, how to you manage to look so awesome at the end of 26.2 miles in 88 degree weather?! 🙂
I’m so glad you were able to take it slow, enjoy the “experience” and have a great time! Having all your family there must have been amazing! Congrats!
YAY Kristy! I’m so proud of you! Congratulations on your Boston finish and for listening to your body with the crazy heat. So happy to hear that it was a positive experience after the journey you went through to get to the finish. You are an inspiration!
Woohoo! Congrats! I’m so glad you had such a positive experience despite the heat. The Boston spectators are what make the marathon so special!
Congratulations Kristy!! Finishing Boston in that heat is a major accomplishment. And the fact that you did it with a smile on your face speaks volumes! I am so glad you enjoyed the experience of Boston. You worked SO hard to get here, and you deserved a good race day for it. I’m sorry that the weather didn’t cooperate, but you did great under the circumstances! Congrats on running smart and hanging in there. You WILL get another shot at Boston, but I know you will always remember your first. Hope you are still riding that marathon high…and that your legs are starting to recover!
Megan (The Runner's Kitchen) says
Great race report, Kristy! I’m so glad that you had a good (and safe!) experience. We will run PRs another day, hopefully not when the temperature is 90 degrees 🙂 Hopefully I’ll see you at an East Coast race sometime soon! <3
Kate @ NaturaStride says
Great job, Kristy!! Loved this recap. Glad you had such a great experience and were able to keep a positive outlook!! Great pictures as well! Congrats 🙂
Congrats!!!! You killed it in that heat!
Running Girl says
Congratulations! You ran a smart race & finished in epic conditions. You should be so proud of yourself – you look amazing & so happy in your pictures. 🙂
So glad to hear you had a great experience despite that oppressive heat. It was SO BAD that day. Great job on running such a smart race.
And if you do Boston next year, can we please meet up? This year would have been virtually impossible with my ticking time bomb of an infant but hopefully a 1-year old will be more manageable? We’ll see.
Your recap makes the whole experience sound simply amazing. Congratulations!
Congrats on the marathon. Even though it was your fourth slowest, not visiting the medical tent is a big win in my book!
I developed tendoniotis in my first (and only marathon) so have been concentrating on shorter races every since!