Monday, 10 April 2017

Tips for Running the Boston Marathon!!!!

No no no, this isn't a post on "How to win Boston" or anything like that, lol. These are just tidbits of advice for runners that I've learned from my few years there.

Hopefully you find something to take from it!

1. Celebrate first off because YOU'RE GOING TO THE BOSTON MARATHON!!!!!!
Embracing Unicorn culture is a must when you are a Boston Marathoner. ;)
Congratulations you're in!

2. Give your friends and family your bib number so they can track you! The BAA has a great simple system on race day where you simply enter your runner's info and you will receive updates every 5k, along with half and finish times for your runner(s)! Trust me, knowing others are tracking your progress adds a little zip to your step when you see those chip mats along the course! ;) LOL

3. Start packing at least a week before you leave! I always start with race attire possibilities, runner passport and throwaways! Daily I add to the suitcase as I add each thing on my list.

4. Pack something to sit on and cover up in at the Athlete's Village. Sitting on the damp grass even on a warm day gives me a chill. I like those foam workout square mats that fit together or a yoga mat cut in half. A garbage bag is good sure, but the ground is still firm and you don't want to be standing and walking around the entire morning hours before your marathon!

Just chillin'.

5. This reminds me! Line up for the bathroom and LINE UP AGAIN! As bus loads of runners enter the village this becomes a major waiting game and the nerves grow as you hear runner waves being called to the starting corrals. Also, you may want to take some TP with you, just in case! I've heard people say that they do run out!!!

6. Plan for ANY type of weather! I pack gloves, hats, shorts, sunscreen, long sleeves, arm sleeves, tanks, bras, garbage bags, you name it! Each year it seems Boston's race day weather can be one extreme or another. I've gotten a sunburn there twice and nearly froze to death in 2015 in the wind and rain. So seriously train in all weather and pack for ALL weather! But don't let the weather obsessors psych you out! ;)

Just in case you were wondering...lol.


7. The course will hurt. Know that but for goodness sake smile as much as possible, lol. Cameras are EVERYWHERE!!!!
Even when you don't see them! LOL

8. If your family comes along to cheer find a spot and know EXACTLY where they will be! The city will look so much different come race day with all the signs, barricades and PEOPLE! One year I couldn't find Matt in the crowd going up the first Newton hill and it was basically all I thought about for the rest of the run. :( Let's just say that the past two years I SAW him. :D

9. Preview the course and get pumped up!!! I watch this video each year before Boston and I get so chilled and excited just listening to the elites/organizers talking about each part of the course!



10. Seriously resist the urge to spend all weekend on the concrete floors of the John Hancock Convention Centre at the expo!
I usually take one day (Saturday) to do this so that on Sunday I can chill at the hotel. Although Matt and I like to drive some of the course as well....
I took this driving up one of the Newton hills
11. Have so much fun!!!! This course goes by quicker than any other marathon I've ever run!!!! I feel like you hear the start gun, Suddenly you're in Wellesley hearing the girls screaming and before you know it you've crested Heartbreak! Then there's only like 9ish km to go!!!!! Take it all in because you WILL replay it over and over in your head!  I'm always elated and sad when I finish....it's actually kind of weird really.

12. Know that when you arrive in Boston your goals may change! Each year I train hard and leave for the Boston Marathon with great ambition. Every single time the Boston Buzz gets to me before the race and I really just want to soak it all up and enjoy every step! I'm NOT just saying that. You'll know exactly what I mean in a week. ;)

13. I am NOT a Pro Boston Runner or an expert by any means and each year I learn something new, as with every marathon I run. But the one thing that resonates is pacing! The temptation to zoom through the first half of the race is there because of the elevation profile. The layout offers a fast first half, but know that what you waste when the course is easy, becomes less you have for the hills of Newton.

14. When you make the final turn onto Boylston the finish seems super far away! Take it in and try not to obsess over how far you've left to go. (It appears like an eternity away). Instead take in every step of glory as you make your way up the famous marathon finish! Honestly, it's amazing!
Boston 2015 finish.
15. You MUST plan a celebratory meal for the night of! Seriously, I am highly motivated by food so sometimes when things get tough late in the game, Burger mania takes over my brain.

To hold me up until then.....

16. Wear that unicorn proudly! This truly is a special piece of hardware. <3

17. Believe in yourself!!!! Yes this is often the hardest part of your marathon training, but know that you have people who DO believe in you!
Love love love this! <3

What other tips would you give someone running Boston? Or any marathon for that matter!

Thanks again my friends for stopping in on the GGR blogspace!
One week!!!! 

Happy Running,
Heather :)

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