Friday, April 22, 2016

Boston Marathon: Grateful to be Invited to the Party


First step when we landed in Boston was the Boston Marathon Expo.  My dear friend Jessica and her Boston pals joined us at the expo.


After the expo, we stretched our legs out on a shot run.  For this midwestern gal, running along the water was a treat!


Celebrity sighting in downtown Boston....Mark Wahlberg (in the blue hat).  Evidently, he was filming a clip for his upcoming movie "Patriot's Day."


Four of my hometown runners posed for pictures on the finish line.  We have started to call ourselves "cover models" as these photos may be used in our hometown magazine.


These two!  Mark is my friend since the age of five.  He set us up on our first date.  They still make us laugh.  We appreciate a relationship that has roots and still brings us joy.


Technically this Boston trip is our 15th wedding anniversary trip.  Grateful for a husband who is willing to count a race weekend as a romantic getaway!


Love that these two still make each other laugh.


And that they are not too old to be juvenile.


My race buddies!  So grateful to be experiencing the race with good friends.


Feeling a bit artsy!  Fun pic!


A trip to Boston must include the obligatory walking of the Freedom Trail!


A makeshift memorial for those impacted by the Boston Marathon bombing in 2013.  This spot felt sacred and somber and remembered.


My training buddy Nicole and I spent 16 weeks to get to this place.  It felt good to experience the journey together.


The day before the race, Jessica and I stretched out our legs on a leisurely two-miler along the water.


Minutes before the marathon start, we took the pre-photos. 

With my friend Jessica!


With Claudia.


With my Indiana pals.


The Boston crew and the Indiana girls pose together.


Nicole and I anxiously awaited the race start in the corral.


I took a few photos along the way.  About mile 12, we entered Wellesley.



A photos of the well-known Wellesley girls and their signs.


Relief upon seeing this sign.  Note the crowds.  Amazing! 


Not my best time, but a wonderful experience.  So grateful to have completed another Boston Marathon and to experience it with those I love and enjoy.


A celebratory post-race dinner with spouses (and after a good shower!).


Are these the calories you are suppose to pump back into your body?


The day after the Boston Marathon, Chris and I took two days to ourselves to celebrate our anniversary.  We headed over to New Hampshire and then drove up the coast of Maine.


The scenery was truly breath-taking.


I found each and every lighthouse to be captivating!


Still walking the day after the race, but running shoes were a must!


We finally found a pocket of time to talk.  We weren't interrupted with homework, carpools, and sports practices.  It was glorious!


These are not stretch marks (promise), but chafing.  Just one of the many "war wounds" from the marathon.

As I was pounding the pavement in the Boston Marathon, I thought about how this race was like a party.  It's like the party that you want to get invited to because it is a special and prestigious party.  You want to tell others you got invited to the party.  But, once you go to the party, you realize the party is really not that much fun.  

Those were the thoughts that were racing through my head as I struggled up Heartbreak Hill amid 70 degree heat (temperatures that feel like the center of the sun for marathoners).  At this point, the party was not the least bit enjoyable.  I felt like I had been running for eternity in a sauna on an alpine course.

But, then I hit mile 23.  Reality sank in that I had less than a 5K until the finish.  

Then, my thoughts changed.

I started to think about how lucky I was to get invited to the party.  I remember the unique features of the party.  I relished the experiences associated with the party.

I didn't want the party to end.

What if I never came back to the party, I wondered.

I decided to enjoy my final minutes.

As I finished the last mile of the Boston Marathon, I truly soaked in the sights.  This is not a race to be raced; this is a race to be experienced.

The last .3 miles finish on Boylston Street.  When you turn onto the street, you see the finish line.  The crowds along the street are 3-deep, I've been told.  Their cheers rival a freight train.  I remembered that I was running on sacred ground.  The same spot where bombs wrecked havoc just three years earlier.  Now, this street was a party.  It was a celebration, and I was invited to be one of the key guests.

When I finished the Boston Marathon, I had tears in my eyes.  At that point, I realized the party was quite possibly the best event I've ever been fortunate enough to attend.  I remembered the truly best portions of the last few hours.  

As for everything else, those memories seemed to fade.


1 comment:

  1. This Boston Marathon will be a very interesting event for all participants. Being an event planner I also wish to organize such fun event. Personally I really enjoy attending such events at party venues and planning them is extremely enjoyable.

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