The 118th running of the Boston Marathon was one for the books. Not only did it result in an American breaking the tape for the first time since 1985, but it showed the stunning resilience of the running community and the people of Boston.
This year, our very own customer service ninja and ultramarathon stud Juli made an emotional return to Beantown after running the marathon for the first time last year. She crossed the line in 3:19:50. We chatted with her prior to her race, and caught up with her again afterwards to get a feel for how it went.
RW: So, how did your second Boston Marathon go?
Juli: Well, it wasn’t my best race, but I had a great time and thoroughly enjoyed the race. Although my time wasn’t my best, I wasn’t feeling my best either, so my time didn’t really bother me. I was only a minute slower than last year, so I guess I’ll take what I can get. My reason for running the race was just to be a part of the community again this year, and that was accomplished!
What do you feel you could have done differently?
I think I went into the race hungry, which never works out well for me, and I ended up being very nauseous for a good part of the race. I hadn’t really eaten enough before the race, and even during the weekend. I had a lot of other things going on, and I should have made that more of a priority. Even eating a little more right before the race would have been a good idea. I also could have had a higher mileage training schedule, I was pretty much just doing the bare bones.
How was the environment this year differ from last year’s?
The pre-race weekend environment had noticeable changes from last year. In general, the focus was still on running the race and fostering a sense of community among the runners, like always. But there was a depth to the weekend festivities that just wasn’t there last year, of course. There was an air of commemoration and unity throughout the entire city, from daffodil plants with a “Boston Strong” sticker all over every building to blue and yellow scarves on runners and kids walking around with shirts displaying the MR8 charity logo (in honor of Martin Richard, the 8 year old that was killed in the attack). It was beautiful. The race itself was definitely it’s own entity and it was neat to see the celebration of this year’s runners and the accomplishments of the current athletes.
How sore were you post-race? Any difficulties climbing stairs?
I was definitely a bit sore. Surprisingly, actually. The friends I stayed with lived on the fourth floor, so it was challenging to climb the stairs… I actually didn’t realize the toll that the downhills had taken on me until I ran another race a week later. Then I felt it! [Editor’s note: In true ultramarathoner spirit, Juli actually raced the SLO Marathon a mere 6 days after running Boston – NBD.]
When will you start training for your next race?
My next race is a trail 50k at the end of May, so I won’t have to put in any special training for that, really. As of now, the next race I will start training for is a 50 miler in the fall. I’m so excited to get back to the trails! I enjoyed Boston, but am much more at home on the trails.
Any final thoughts?
I’m just really glad that I got to run the race this year. Over the weekend I thought a couple of times that I couldn’t imagine being anywhere else. I’m very thankful for all the support I received!!