It’s the Thankful Thursday after my first Boston Marathon!
I am so very thankful for all who helped me along the way to my first Boston Marathon finish, all the way from DNSing Richmond 2013 and training for Shamrock 2014, supporting my BQ efforts that culminated in a dream come true.
- DH – for so long, for so many things and everything, and extra special gratitude for amazing race weekend support
- my chiro (especially all the last minute support/appts and calming me down)
- my sister
- my friends – especially K
- my massage therapist (texting me during the weekend with support and after, eagerly asking “did you wear the jacket?”)
- tweeps & blog readers – for all your support and encouragement every day and especially the times I’ve needed it most – I thought of you all during the race…..and many of you inspire me as well
I’m thankful for my role models and inspirations – inspiring me in training, in not giving up and coming back, in putting in the time and effort to do the “little” and “extra” things that aren’t truly either: Meb, Deena, Joanie
And I’m thankful for people I’d never met before who helped me me race weekend:
- The European CompressSport sleeve guy at the expo – If I could hug him, I would. I went to get quad sleeves, which I’d never used before, per my chiro, as I pulled a groin muscle Wed night before the race. The CompressSport guy promised they’d be fine on race day, He was right. I wore Sat afternoon, evening and slept in them, wore them for the Sun shakeout run and then walking around. I then broke rule #1 and wore them for the race – they really helped my hams, groin pull and probably quads for downhill, just as the guy had said! (also kept me a bit warmer as I was wearing very thin shorts) Utterly sold. Wearing for recovery also.
- The helpful young man and woman at the Saucony expo booth during my desperate search for warmer gloves who sent me to Marathon Sports on Boylston, and the young woman at Marathon Sports who put gloves aside for me when I called ahead. Those gloves, though they eventually were dripping wet and so cold I had to take them off. I think having the warmer gloves really helped.
- A fellow runner waiting in the Athletes’ Village….a Vermont woman who was one of the charity runners, I think her bib was something like 28xxx. She gave me a long sleeved midweight tech shirt that she was going to toss. She pretty much forced it on me as I was standing there shaking like a leaf as I was SO cold – I think I would have been way too cold without the shirt. In the cold, wind and rain, having that extra shirt layer on my core, plus on top of the arm warmers, really made a huge difference and may have saved me from hypothermia…in retrospect, based on my poor cognitive processes and inability to make a decision in the Village. I may have been inching toward hypothermia pre-race. I couldn’t decide the simplest things: Should I eat my applesauce and Vespa as planned though it was a bit late? Should I take the shirt? I dithered on that for a LONG time and the woman finally almost demanded I put it on.
- I met Nico, a charity runner, while we were in the corrals. He had such an interesting and inspiring story and was a “double agent” Marathon Maniac. He also helped me find the last set of portajohns and helped me get my sweatpants off without having to sit down.
- Post-race, the heatsheet volunteer who rushed over to me saying “you look so cold” and I was. She asked if I had gloves (I’d shoved my soaking wet gloves in pockets somewhere back around the hills, seemed colder to have them on) and when I told her they were wet, she said “I bought dress socks and I have an extra pair in my pocket, do you want them?” I took them. They may have helped a bit on the way back to the hotel, when the breeze was quite unpleasant even with the heatsheet (which doesn’t cover everything).
- People who gave me directions that helped me get back to the hotel (I was pretty cold and tired at that point) and people who let us cut through the hotel’s restaurant entrance though they weren’t supposed to. Then there were (no kidding) 40 people in line for elevators, and some security guy took the 3 of us in our heat sheets into a service elevator to get us to our rooms quickly.
- The many, many, many volunteers who stood out in really unpleasant conditions to make sure the runners had what we needed and were taken care of. What incredible spirit.
- The law enforcement and medical personnel who kept us safe start to finish and were a supportive presence along the way, some clapping and cheering us on while they did their duties.
- The spectators. The crowd support was amazing, even deafening in places, and it really helped. Kids and elderly folks in the road wanting hand slaps, families out in soaking cold weather, people with orange slices and candy and signs, people making noise however they could to lift our spirits and help us keep moving forward despite fatigue or pain or weather. You all are a credit to Boston!
The unicorn had to visit my pal the treadmill who enabled me to achieve this goal….I think they look great together. Dreams CAN come true.
And yes, I’ll probably leave the course profile there – why not? We know I’ll start training for Boston 2016 ASAP.
What are you thankful for? If you ran Boston, I hope it was a wonderful experience for you regardless of weather and finish time!