If you're like me, last Monday was a somewhat discomforting day. As I watched on my computer a sea of runners, over 26,000 finishers, made their way, braving rainy and windy conditions, from Hopkinton, through the New England countryside, into the city of Boston in the 119th running of the Boston Marathon. I envied those folks and wished I was among them.
Since 1978, I've competed in the venerable race 16 times, but three weeks after the 2013 race, a tear of two hamstring tendons has prevented me from being able to log the miles necessary to compete at the marathon distance.
And let me tell you, when it comes to the Boston Marathon, 16 is not enough!
If you're a runner, there's really nowhere else you'd rather be than in the city of Boston during the third weekend of April.
Those of you who have run it know what I mean. And for those of you who haven't, the Boston Marathon should be a part of your bucket list.
Unlike most other marathons, one must qualify for the Boston Marathon.
Now, that can be a problem.
In order to run the 2016 Boston Marathon, one must qualify by September 14 of 2015. That's right, the qualifying deadline falls behind the prime fall marathons, which strikes me as a bit peculiar. However, it IS the Boston Marathon, and the B.A.A. can pretty much dictate the qualifying terms. (See www.baa.org for a list of qualifying times)
The clock is ticking in order to qualify during the spring marathon season. Soon, heat will grip much of the country, and marathons will be tougher to find. There's always Grandma's Marathon in Duluth, Minnesota if you feel like running a marathon in June. Otherwise, one must sneak that qualifying time in during the first two weekends of September.
This runner is going to try to drag a gimpy leg and obtain a qualifying time in September. To do so will require long summertime miles, but it's worth it.
Meb Keflezighi has dubbed the Boston, "The people's Olympics," and I couldn't agree with him more.
As a runner, you owe it to yourself to get there some day.
I hope we can get there together.