This is it! The most exciting weekend of the year!
Boston Marathon weekend!! And it happened to intersect this year with Easter, so that’s made for a very busy/fun/cool/chaotic weekend.
I myself, have not worked my way up to running marathons yet, but, like most runners, I dream of getting that Boston number. My parents have run it several times and I would say that I enjoyed going to the finish line to support them, but…there was definitely a good amount of dragging involved. My mom’s first finish, in 2002, was cold and rainy and my brothers and I were not amused. (We were slightly more enthused by her last one, when I was in high school. Slightly.) Now, as an adult who’s lost all that teenage attitude, I can appreciate this weekend for how energetic and positive and inspiring it is!
(Aside: Not everyone in Boston sees it this way, but I think they should! I’m trying, really trying, not to annoy my friends with my running/fitness excitement, but there are two times when I just can’t hold it in. Olympics and the Boston Marathon. So they have to suck it up, this one time, and stop sneering and complaining about crowds on the T, and talking about how all the runners make them feel ‘inadequate’ and have fun for once.)
I worked on Friday at my historic site, and it was obvious that the runners had started to arrive. It was gorgeous out and a perfect day to see the city. I saw a little girl with a tiny stuffed unicorn with its own BAA jersey. Post-work I ended up walking to a bike shop on the waterfront to get some bike chain lube and then all the way back to the Prudential Center for dinner/milling about Barnes and Noble until the Good Friday service at church started.
I had a plan. It was a good, responsible plan. I was going to go to the service (I don’t know if you’ve ever been to a Catholic Good Friday service, readers, but it is long and most of it is standing) and then I was going to go straight home and go to bed. I was going to be responsible, get ready for the race in the morning…I clearly did not do that, because that’s not how I roll. (I joke that my first 10K was fueled by boxed wine and gin.) I ran into some friends after the service, who I haven’t seen in months, and they invited me to their Godspell movie viewing party. There was wine and pizza. It was not hard to be convinced. I didn’t end up getting home until after midnight, but it was totally worth it. (If you’ve never seen the 1973 movie version of the musical Godspell, stop everything and watch it now. It’s pure, amazing hippie nonsense. Victor Garber is Jesus. It’s a work of art.)
After hippie nonsense musicals and wine, I woke up feeling for the BAA 5K feeling…okay. I wasn’t quite hungover, because Catholic nerds don’t go that hard but I was still pretty tired. Could have used more than 6 hours of sleep. I was really, really hoping that I could finally make it in under 25 minutes. I’d been training, I felt like I could do it.
I couldn’t do it.
It was partially my own fault (damn you wine!) but it was just not the course to aim for a PR in. (I mean, I guess except for Ben True setting an American Record.) Well, it was the course (flat and straight, lots of energy from spectators) but not the field. There were almost 10,000 runners and not a lot of honesty in the corrals. It was a dense course almost the whole way and by half a mile in I was passing people struggling and walking who have clearly gone out way too fast. I felt mild annoyance (please have the peace of mind to move to the side instead of just stopping in the middle and creating a roadblock) and also I felt kind of sad for them. I feel like people who go out too fast just make themselves miserable because they’re physically suffering and also they’re feeling bad that they’re being passed. I hope they won’t stop just because of this race and that they’ll get better and realize that they should be honest about their pace at the start and they’ll have more fun.
But crowds aside-
It was really fun to run across the marathon finish, and I felt really good about my effort, if not my time (27.20 blahh). I really liked the run itself, down Commonwealth Ave and back up Boylston, to finish back at the Common.
And there was a bar crawl afterwards! With my mom’s coworkers! So that was definitely fun. And we met an adorable fluffy dog!
I crashed hard around 4pm and went home. I was dead asleep by 8:15.
Easter Sunday (So Far…)~
10 hours of sleep later, I was a little bit late to Sunday morning Easter mass so I had to stand. More standing. But it was worth it and I saw a lot of marathon jackets in the crowd! I also had to help out at work (historic site turns back into a church on Sundays, like Cinderella at midnight) so I had to help keep out crowds while the Easter service was going on. Meaning I was standing from about 9:30 to 1:00.
And now I have to stay up all night tonight to ride my bike from Hopkinton to Copley Square.
I might die after this weekend. If I don’t die, I’ll be posting Part Two tomorrow, after a good Easter dinner my mom is currently hard at work cooking, and a 30 mile bike ride with thousands of new stranger!friends. Happy Easter!