BOSTON MARATHON

April 24, 2014

Hey guys! Since I got to be part of such an amazing event this past Monday at the Boston Marathon, I thought I’d do an extra post about the race. Included below are photos from my iPhone from the weekend. ­čÖé (Scroll down to read about my race experience.)
Morning run to see this beautiful view on our first day in Boston.

Visiting Harvard University + coffee.

 Dinner outfit for dinner with my aunts from New York who came out to support me.
At the expo with Kate and Megan picking up our race numbers and packets. #weruntogether

Pre-race day in front of the finish line.
Trip isn’t complete without a “Boston Strong” t-shirt. I will wear it proudly all the time!

These commemorative bracelets were made from the banners at last year’s marathon.
One of the most important inspirations for me to run was my three-year-old niece, Ruby Claire. Just four days before the race, she was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis. I wrote this hashtag #runforruby on my hand so everytime I looked down at my watch, I had inspiration to run.

Pre-race in my ganster sweatpants get up trying to keep warm. It was freezing!

 F I N I S H  L I N E
Can’t even describe how happy I was to cross that thing!
 DONE. Oh-so-happy
<3 these girls. Megan and Kate are two of my running partners, and I was so grateful that we could all be together to share this experience. It truly was a race to remember.

The Boston Marathon turned out to be a much different beast than I expected. I went into the race with a time goal for myself. I didn’t want to put too much pressure on myself in case it didn’t happen but it’s hard because I wanted to compete with myself and do better than my last race. The Boston Marathon requires a qualifying time of 3:35, and I had run my previous marathon in about 3:25 so I wanted to run at least a 3:20. Looking at my training, I seemed prepared to do so. But you can never really predict exactly how you are going to feel on race day. You can eat all the right things and sleep enough and read inspiring quotes, but when it comes down to it, sometimes your body doesn’t do exactly what you hope it will. The night before the race, I was giddy and nervous. I always get that way. Something about the anticipation of the race and the adrenaline that awaits you. As I started the race, my legs didn’t feel as fresh as they should have. I came through the first few miles much slower than I wanted to for just having started the race. At about mile 5, I started feeling something in my toe. At mile 8, I decided to stop to see what was wrong because it was pretty painful, and I knew whatever it was would just continue to bother me. It was hard to decided to stop because even though it’s a long race every second counts. When I stopped and took off my shoe, my toe was all bloody and upon closer examination, I realized one of my toenails had started coming off. As gross as it sounds, I knew I had to pull it off so that I could continue running. So I did. A little bit later something else was bothering me, and I stopped again to look at my foot but didn’t see anything. At the end of the race, I confirmed what I had finally determined had been the cause of my pain. I had a big blood blister on the bottom of my foot. I literally had to tell myself to just keep running the entire race. I knew I couldn’t stop or else it would be over, and I couldn’t let that happen. I had to battle too with knowing that even though I would finish, I wasn’t going to do as well as I planned. That was probably the hardest part. I had worked so hard and felt so ready, and then it didn’t happen how I thought it would. And the closer I drew to the end of the race, the harder the course got as well. Lots of hills. Everything was harder than I expected. I finished the race with a time of about 3:41. I know that might sound great to some of you, but when you train so hard and have expectations that aren’t met it’s a little hard to face. Looking back now though, I have started to feel proud that I was able to push through my personal challenges and still finish strong.┬á
There was one thing though that made the race day amazing and absolutely blew my expectations out of the water: the crowd. The city of Boston is AMAZING. A million spectators lined the race course. The entire course felt like a finish line. I have run races before where you go ten miles without seeing but a few people cheering for you. It was so inspiring too. The whole way people kept saying thank you for running. It was a 26.2 mile victory lap taking back the city of Boston and showing the world that people unite and come back stronger after they’ve been hurt. I can’t imagine a better year to run it. Despite my personal struggles, I wouldn’t change a thing. I was so blessed to be a part of such a monumental day in Boston’s history.
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