Boston Marathon

April 19, 2010

Pre Race

We flew into Boston and met Bill at the airport.  We took the train to our hotels, dropped our luggage, ate some lunch (We ate at the food court in the mall), and headed to the expo for some serious shopping.  It would have to be a rushed trip since I only had 2 1/2 hours!  How could I ever fit it all in?!

I bought a hoodie, T Shirt, jacket, pin & patch.

I tried on numerous shoes…trying desperately to find a pair that leave me with toenails and blisterless.  Since my WONDERFUL Adizero LT shoes were discontinued I have had nothing but trouble!

I am currently running in Puma Complete Roadracers, which I love the way they feel, but they are leaving my feet a mess!

I even considered the Vibrams (even though I think they look funny), but they felt funny between my toes.  I am not sure what I think about the Vibram craze….

I may have narrowed it down to the Green Silence by Brooks for the next shoe to try…even though they are not green?!?

They didn’t have my size, so I will try to find them when I get home.

We shopped until the very last second then picked up our packets.  We got a great long sleeve tech shirt – teal for the girls & blue for the boys.

We met Chuck, Chuck (to be known as Chuck squared in the future) and John out front and headed over to Cheesecake Factory for dinner.  We had a bit of a wait so we headed over to the hotel, dropped our stuff, and hung out at Starbucks (where else) until time to eat.

We headed back over to Cheesecake Factory and I was ready to eat!!  I had sweet corn tamale cakes and jamaican black pepper shrimp…some of my favorite dishes!!

We said good bye and turned in after sorting through our schwag.

We took a taxi to and met the guys at Panificio for breakfast.  I had delicious french toast!  As we were leaving, we met the editor of Runners World.  Very fun!

Now it’s off to spend the day at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Museum!

Our trek begins!

We took the train and got off at the JFK/U Mass station.  The museum and U Mass must be close!

Even though it was chilly and rainy, it was a beautiful walk to the museum.

We walked through some cool neighborhoods and Callie had the opportunity to get some nice pics.

Okay, the walk was a little further than we expected!

The rain finally stopped and we made a pit stop at the University and then headed to the museum.

We FINALLY arrived at the JFK museum.

It is my goal to visit all of the Presidential Museums…this will make number 4 for Chuck and me…Bill, Kari, & John are behind!

Our official photographer!

We were all very happy to learn that there was a shuttle that would take us back to the train station!

The trip back was a lot faster even if it was not as scenic…

Now the train…

Chuck was showing off his new Boston jacket while we waited!

Callie wasn’t sure that she wanted to be associated with the boys!

They just look like trouble, huh?

We stopped at Starbucks before heading back to our hotels.  Callie and I made one last pass through the expo while Bill headed back to the hotel to do some work.

We met Bill at the hotel then jumped in a cab to go to the pasta feed.

So much for relaxing the day before the race!

We pulled up to the pasta feed just in time to run from the cab to the front of the line to catch the boys who were already going inside…woo-hoo!

The room was decorated with balloons that had videos of past races projected on to them.  Very Cool!!

Geoff Smith…1984 and 1985 winner from Great Britain.

Our meals consisted of salad, rolls, tuna fish pasta salad, pasta marinara with sausage, and mac & cheese.  I stuck with the meatless choices – mac and cheese and salad.  It was very good!

We got a big table inside and a girl from Idaho and her hubby joined us.  The pasta feed at Boston is fun and now I know we can sit inside…we have always been outside in the past and the weather can be chilly.

On the way out they gave out bags of Toblerone and Lindor chocolates, cookies, chips, etc.  Yummy!!

We headed back to the hotel and laid out all of our race stuff and hit the sack!


We were up early and I had my traditional breakfast of a donut and Starbucks bottled frappuccino.

We headed out for our mile + walk to the buses.  We met a super cool guy along the way, Neil from…Idaho!  We talked all the way to the buses and we found out it was his first Boston.  We kind of adopted him into our group as we navigated the crowd to find the guys.  The guys had started talking to a couple of gals…also from Idaho!  I think the whole state of Idaho must be in Boston!

Chuck, the Idaho girls, and Neil…

me and Bill…

and John and Chuck…

enjoyed the long ride in traffic to Hopkinton with great company!

We were dropped off in the Athlete’s Village and wandered around for awhile looking for a warm, comfortable spot out of the wind to stretch out.  All of a sudden, I hear “Cristy!”  It’s Jan from Phoenix!  Wow!  What a small world!!

Here we are!  Look at my crew of guys!!

We finally find a spot on the grassy knoll!

Chuck settles in and has a snack!

I am sooo happy!  I love the experience of Boston!

John is ready to go!!  hehe!  He might be warm but he is still funny!

The buses in the back are our bag drop.


Our new super fast friend Neil is ready to run his first Boston!  Yea!!!!

Bill disappeared into the port-a-potty line…Where is he?!  It is time to go!!

John is ready to go…we just don’t want to talk about what he plans to do with the empty bottle…hmmm.

Me and my guys!!

I think we are all psyched and ready to head to the start!

Bill, Neil, and I were in the first wave and headed down 30 minutes before the three musketeers.  We wished Neil luck as he headed up to his corral.

Bill and I started out running together, but after a short while I let Bill go as I wanted to be a bit conservative during the first half.  I had been suffering with some pretty severe back pain all week and just wanted to ensure that I could finish.  I caught back up with Bill after a few miles and introduced him to an Aussie that I met.  He was 72 and shooting for a 3:33.  I kept Bill in sight until I pulled off before Wellesley for a pit stop and to dislodge a pebble from my shoe.

I avoided the kisses and ran through the Wellesley girls on the opposite side of the street, although my ears were still ringing for miles!

I ran down the hill after the Wellesley girls and through the downtown area feeling okay.  I think it was on the next uphill slope that I started having trouble…my back started having spasms so I made the decision to make sure I could finish.  I walked up every uphill from there to the finish.

I made it to the Newton Hills and found orange slice heaven!

There is nothing that tastes better to me during or after a run than oranges!

…and I am pretty sure I ate about five whole oranges on my journey through Newton!

I knew once I made it to the top of Heartbreak that I would finish and just enjoyed the run.  Boston College may even surpass the Wellesley girls for enthusiasm and noise!  As we ran by their party seemed to be just getting started!  I had some stomach issues and ducked into an empty port-a-let.  I think it was empty because you had to weave through a sea of spectators to get there!   I ran past a girl that was struggling…so I decided to run with her for a bit.  She had a hip injury and was suffering.  We talked for a bit and she seemed to start feeling better (or she was very brave).  Off I went to the Citgo sign…one mile to go!

I love Boston because it is 26.2 miles of 500,000 spectators!

I turned the corner to Boylston and reveled in the moment.

I felt mixed emotions…so privileged and proud to be there, but a bit disappointed that I wasn’t able to have the day I had hoped for…but as the throngs of people several deep on Boylston cheered…I came to peace with the day…it is Boston…and I finished…loving every minute…what more could I ever ask for!


I looked for Callie as I was running in, but I didn’t see her (she was there waiting for an hour but didn’t see me either…what a trooper!)  Bill was waiting for me at the finish line.  We got our medals and potato wraps and headed for the food tables for cookies and snacks, and then to the buses for our bags.  I still had an upset tummy (which is unusual for me and it lasted for a couple of days…ugh!) and I was starting to get cold!

At the finish, a sea of potato wrapped runners make their way to the buses to pick up their drop bags.

We got our bags, put on some warm clothes, called Callie, and headed to the hotel…stopping by Starbucks to look for Neil…but no sign…it turns out we missed each other.

Post Race

Callie met us at the room, I took a nap while Bill showered, then I took a long soak in a very hot tub. (also unusual for me as I find the thought of hotel tubs icky) but felt a bit better afterward…maybe it was the Pepto?

We took a cab to the North End to meet the guys, and walk to an Italian restaurant…well with some shopping pit stops along the way!

We had a great dinner at La Famiglia Giorgio!

I had a great stuffed eggplant!

Chuck J. had this yummy looking mussel dish.

We finished the evening by getting a Gelati at the Gelatateria, going to Mike’s Pastry for Cannoli, and next door for coffee.

I slept sooo sound!  Bill got up and met the guys at Panificio for breakfast, but Callie and I opted for breakfast at the Pour House and shopping on Newbury Street before we checked out and headed to the airport at noon.

Maybe this would have helped Monday!

Should we go to the airport or Wonderland…maybe the airport.


Valerie Bertinelli ran to support research at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute-The Jimmy Fund.  She finished in 5:14…

Bill  3:36.04

Cristy  3:48.19

John  3:58.12

Chuck  4:42.12

Chuck J  5:04.38

Neil  3:58.52


A Brief History of the Boston Marathon

John Graham, Boston Athletic Association member and inaugural U.S. Olympic Team Manager, was so inspired by the Olympics that he decided to conduct a marathon in the Boston area.  A route with the distance of 24.5 miles from Metcalf’s Mill in Ashland to Irvington Oval in Boston was chosen.  The first Boston Marathon was held April 19, 1897.  John J. McDermott of New York emerged out of the field of 15 as the victor with a time of 2:55.10.

In 1924 the starting line was moved to Hopkinton, but it wasn’t until 1927 that the distance was increased to the Olympic standard established in 1908 of 26 miles, 385 yards.  The race is held on Patriots Day, a holiday commemorating the start of the Revolutionary War, recognized only in Maine and Massachusetts.

Women in Boston

Roberta Gibb was the first woman to run the full Boston Marathon.  Roberta ran without an official race number (she hid in the bushes until the race started) and finished in 3:21.40.  She was the first female finisher for three years, 1966-68.  Katherine Switzer was issued a bib  number in 1967 as she did not indicate that she was a female on the application, only listed her name as K.V. Switzer.  B.A.A. officials tried repeatedly to physically remove her from the course once she was identified as a female.  She finished in her own estimate in 4:20.  The A.A.U. permitted sanctioned marathons to allow women to run in 1971.  Eight women entered  in 1972 and Nina Kuscsik became the first official women’s champion finishing in 3:10.26.  All eight women finished.

Wheelchair Division

The Boston Marathon became the first marathon to include a wheelchair division.  The Race Director, Will Cloney promised Bob Hall in 1975 that he would receive an official finisher’s certificate if he finished in less than 3 hours.  Bob Hall finished in 2:58.

Heartbreak Hill

Heartbreak Hill was given the nickname by Boston Globe reporter, Jerry Nason.  In 1936, John Kelley caught Ellison “Tarzan” Brown on the Newton Hills.  Kelley made a friendly gesture of tapping “Tarzan” on the shoulder and “Tarzan” responded by regaining the lead on the final hill, and as Nason reported, “breaking Kelley’s heart.”

Qualifying Standards

Qualifying standards were introduced in 1970.  The entry form stated, “A runner must submit the certification…that he has trained sufficiently to finish the course in less than four hours…”

Prize Money

Prize money was established in 1986, with the support of principal sponsor John Hancock Financial Services.  The winner was awarded $60,000 and a Mercedes-Benz.  The prize purse in 2010 will be $806,000

Starting Line

Elite women were given a separate start in 2005.  In 2006, the field was divided into two waves, the first 10,000 started at 12:00 and the rest of the field at 12:30.  This was also the first year for chip timing.  The following year, in 2007, the start was rolled back to 10:00 A.M.


The inaugural event had 18 entrants, 15 starters, and 10 finishers in 1897.  By 1995 the field had grown to 9,416 entrants.  In celebration of the centennial running in 1996, the field skyrocketed to 38,708 entrants, a world record at the time.  The following year, the numbers dropped back down to 10,471, but gradually increased over the decade to 26,331 entrants and 22,843 finishers in 2009.  The 2009 race sold out in late February.  The 2010 race was limited to 25,000 entrants and sold out in November.


  • John A. Kelley holds the record for the most races started (61) and finished (58).  It was Kelley’s third attempt that he finally finished the race.  He won the race in 1935 and 1945.  He last completed the course in 1992 at the age of 84.  He served as grand marshall from 1995-2004, missing only one year due to illness.  Kelley passed away in 2004 at the age of 97. A three-time Olympian, John Kelley was selected as runner of the century by Runners World Magazine.
  • The only B.A.A. member to ever win was John J. Kelley who established a course record of 2:20.05 in 1957.
  • The only men to have won Boston 4 or more times are:
  1. Clarence DeMar (7)
  2. Gerard Cote (4)
  3. Bill Rodgers (4)
  4. Robert K. Cheruiyot (4)
  • The last Americans to win the Boston Marathon were Greg Meyer in 1983 and Lisa Larsen-Weidenbach in 1985.
  • Since 1988, African men have won all but two races and African women have won all but one since 1997.
  • Course records are held by Robert K. Cheruiyot 2:07.14 and Margaret Okayo 2:20.43, both from Kenya.
  • In terms of media coverage, the Boston Marathon ranks only behind the Super Bowl as the largest single day sporting event, with 1100 members representing 250 outlets.
  • Approximately 500,000 spectators line the course annually.
  • In 2009, 1200 participants representing 24 charities raised more than 10.5 million dollars.