Boston Marathon 2023 was my 6th and it was fantastic! Here’s the race recap:
After a travel debacle last year, I decided to fly in Saturday for Monday’s race.
This gave me plenty of buffer time for the expo/bib pick up and allowed an opportunity to see friends!
Once again, I stayed with friends from college, Heather and Jack, who have lived in the Boston area for over 15 years.
Is a visit with them one of the reasons I love this race?
On race morning, Heather drove me directly to Hopkinton. From there, I took a 10 minute shuttle to Athlete’s Village.
I did this last year as well instead of taking the bus from the Commons.
It allowed me to sleep in two hours later (!) and minimizes the wait in Athlete’s Village.
The early miles of this race are a pure celebration.
The Boston Marathon is often called “The People’s Olympics” and it’s because the folks on course make us feel that way.
Confetti popping, air horns blowing, kids on shoulders with pom poms and encouraging signs- it’s the best!
I took time to slap outstretched hands, hype up the crowd, and soak in the excitement.
Real talk: I don’t think this “wastes” time at all.
When I high five a kid, the buzz carries me for a bit until the next.
It’s like an extra “boost” so from an overall time perspective it likely evens out!
I secured my 2024 BQ at OKI earlier this year, though so it’s probably easier for me to say that than someone who needs every second to count.
Since the early miles offer a gradual downhill, I was careful not to overdo it on speed.
The Newton Hills absolutely wrecked me last year (see also: coastal training) and I wanted to enjoy the late miles.
Scream tunnel is my favorite part of the race and this year was no different.
Around mile 13, students at Wellesley College line the streets screaming so loudly it can be heard at mile 12- a full mile away!
I went into more detail about it in my 2012 recap if you’re unfamiliar.
The sound is deafening and the girls were so hype!
I handed out high fives, blew kisses (post pandemic, yo!), and screamed right along with them.
Shortly after Wellesley College, it started pouring rain and that lasted for about three miles.
I’m talking shoes and socks soaked. Cold! Wet!
It would have been really easy to get mad, but the crowd won’t let you do that!
Spectators were still out, easily 5-10 people deep everywhere. ￼
It’s hard to have a pity party when everyone around you is screaming about how fantastic you’re doing.
I even saw a personal friend from my gym unexpectedly around mile 15, which gave me a boost!
There are 4 hills in Newton and they’re a bear because they’re gradual inclines and positioned late in the race, when you’re already fatigued from earlier miles.
The elevation gain in the second half of this course is more than I run in an entire month in Ocean Isle!
I slowed on the hills, as evidenced by my splits doing a total nosedive, but never stopped to walk and felt much stronger than last year by the end.
They’re just hard…and that’s exactly what we want as runners on this course!
The last 10K was wet and windy.
It felt like it took forever to get to the Citgo sign, which signifies 1 mile to go, and another forever to the finish.
I got there, though- 3:39:07, a Boston Qualifying time!
It’s not my fastest, also not the slowest.
All at all, it was a great day out there.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – there’s nothing like the Boston Marathon!
To God be the glory!
Curious about my other trips to Beantown? Here are the recaps: