Me and 12,000 runners ran through the normally bumper to bumper streets of Boston yesterday. I planned on treating this as a "supported training run" for the Zooma Napa Valley Half I am running with my awesome C25K grads in June. It was supposed to be a run 4 minutes walk 2 minutes for the 13.1 miles. A time for walking a time for running.
The first beep went off during mile one and I ignored it. I kept one earbud in only, which I really liked because I got the best of both worlds...music and the ambiance of the race. I think I will do that more often.
I did think that I would pay for skipping the walks by the end, but I also thought if I started walking early I might bail on the whole thing. I actually did figure out that at mile 4 and; 5 I could run from MIT down Mass Ave the 4.2 miles to church and my car if I needed to....
Instead, I ran to the first water stop walked through the stop then kept going figuring I'd see how I felt an hour in. I kept at a regular pace so I finished 5 miles in about an hour. By then with every beep I just skipped it and kept running walking only through the water stations. And one up hill. So I think that was 10 walks total. I hit mile 8 thinking, I did 8 last week....Easy peasy. Mile 3-8.9 had me really wishing the lines weren't so long at the port a john's before the race. I've never skipped before. So mile 9 with all the gatorade sloshing around made it an emergency at mile 9. Eek! I hit mile 10 around 2 hours and knew I could finish. I thought I'd do the run walk thing in the last 3, but kept going. I finished it in 2:40:01. Literally :01 second over 2 hours and 40 minutes. I tried to book it to get under 2:40. That said, considering I haven't run double digits since October, I'll take it. Besides, I was all a glow afterwards. I'd forgotten just how awesome a long run feels.
Boston's Run to Remember is so interesting to me not because of the run or the location or the time of year, but because of the race itself.
The race is hosted by the Boston Police Runner's club to remember the fallen officers. There are many group volunteers at the water stations, at the venue, including officers and incarcerated volunteers. The race is to honor the fallen and the proceeds goes to community and programs to keep kids off the streets and safe. This paradox reminds me of Ecclesiastes 3. At a recent church council meeting we read out loud (I agree with Lillian Daniel) and then prayed a fortunately/unfortunately prayer in the vain of Remy Charlip's Fortunately.
Fortunately, Ned was invited to a surprise party.
Unfortunately, the party was a thousand miles away.
Fortunately, a friend loaned Ned an airplane.
Unfortunately, the motor exploded.
Fortunately, there was a parachute in the airplane.Unfortunately, there was a hole in the parachute.
Anyway, Boston Run's to Remember felt like Ned's adventure, like church council meditation, like Ecclesiastes 3.....
Unfortunately we have a prison system that often keeps people in a vicious cycle; fortunately the inmates had a beautiful day to be outside. Fortunately we were supported by volunteers and I tried to thank every one no matter what shirt they were wearing ---bright orange or dressed blues---unfortunately some go home to prison. Fortunately we have a 13.1 run in Boston. Unfortunately it is to commemorate lives lost.
This is my 3rd one and every year I wonder about running it...thinking about those in my family who are cops and those in my family who have been to prison.
Lots to think about, lots to pray about, lots to remember on a long run through Boston.
|How I looked pre-race.|
A time for confidence.
a time for every activity under heaven.
2A time to be born and a time to die.
A time to plant and a time to harvest.
3A time to kill and a time to heal.
A time to tear down and a time to build up.
4A time to cry and a time to laugh.
A time to grieve and a time to dance.
5A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones.
A time to embrace and a time to turn away.
6A time to search and a time to quit searching.
A time to keep and a time to throw away.
7A time to tear and a time to mend.
A time to be quiet and a time to speak.
8A time to love and a time to hate.
A time for war and a time for peace.
9What do people really get for all their hard work? 10I have seen the burden God has placed on us all.11Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end. 12So I concluded there is nothing better than to be happy and enjoy ourselves as long as we can. 13And people should eat and drink and enjoy the fruits of their labor, for these are gifts from God.