Boston Marathon 2014 Race Recap and Experience

I promise this will be the final Boston Marathon blog post. We are finally back in town and trying to get things back to normal.

 

Boston starts later than most. The first wave for runners begins at 10:00 am. This allowed us to sleep a little bit later. We woke up about 6:30 am.

The latest shuttle Wes could get from the hotel was 7:30 am. We got up, ate some breakfast and then went downstairs to see him off.

Wes Pre Race

Once Wes was shipped off to the start line I got in the car and drove about 30-45 minutes (including traffic) to get on the MBTA. I decided to take the subway in straight to downtown.

It was really crowded by the time I got there due to the marathon and the Red Sox game. I was a bit nervous sitting in traffic that I wouldn’t get to claim my spot at the finish line as early as I wanted.

 

After 3 years I finally got the subway down and it really was a quick and easy process to get in.

People and Finish

I knew that security was going to be tightened this year so I used one of the clear plastic bags that Wes got at the expo to take my items in downtown.

I was searched when I first got off the subway and my they placed a tag on my bag to note for other check points that it had already been searched.

Overall I have to say the Boston Police did an amazing job! They were all so nice and helpful (especially when I had to ask directions) and the entire system was very well organized.

Finish Line

Once I found the finish line I settled in right around the area I’ve stood in the past several years. This allows Wes to know where to look for me.

I started talking with the lady in front of me and she was there watching her husband. She had actually just found out the sex of their baby THAT morning and was going to be writing on a sign for her husband what the gender would be when he ran by.

Fun Find

How cute is that!?

I didn’t get to stay long enough to find out what it was, but I thought that was so sweet!

The first couple hours of waiting seemed long, but once the hand-cyclists began coming through it became fun!

The first place male flew by on his own.

Handpush 1st

The 2nd and 3rd place for the hand cyclists was a tight race! It is always so much fun to watch.

HandPush 2nd and 3rd

A little over an hour later the elite women began to come in. First, was Rita Jeptoo. This was her 3rd year in a row winning it – isn’t that amazing!? She ended up setting a new course record of 2:18.

Womens Winner

I waited for a few more people to pass and then saw Shalane. She looked strong and still amazingly ran a 2:22!

Shalane

A few minutes later Desi Linden came through as well and I was able to snap a quick picture as she raced by.

Desi

The women began to come through and we all patiently waited to see the elite men begin to come in. I had been texting with my mother-in-law who was watching it live on TV and I knew Meb was in the front.

She kept telling me how the others were beginning to catch up to him so I was anxious.

Meb

Once Meb passed me it was pretty obvious he was going to win because the two behind him were too far back to make up that much time.

The first American to win the Boston Marathon in over 20 years! It was so awesome to experience!

 

After the excitement died down the runners began to come in. The crowds were amazing!

I had been getting update texts and had seen that around mile 18-20 Wes had begun to slow down. I found out later than he had been having stomach problems for several miles and right about this time he had to stop to go to the bathroom.

He lost several minutes doing this and when he realized he wouldn’t PR he slowed down a bit.

I anxiously waited to see him, and then FINALLY I saw him running towards me!

Wes finishing

Wes finished in 2:40:11! I am unbelievably proud of him. After a 2 month injury, 1 month of real training and stomach issues on the course I think he did amazing!

I know deep down inside he still originally held out hope that he could PR, and he was on track to do it for the first half of the race, however I know we were both happy he finished injury free!

Wes at Boston

(source)

After I saw Wes I started making my way to the family meet up area. It took me about 20-25 minutes in total due to some new roads they closed off.

It always feels so good to find him after the race! He was sore, tired, and his stomach was still on edge but he looked good overall!

Wes After

He wasn’t really feeling like any after picture this year, so this was the best I could do!

He did a few stretches before we started making out way back to the subway and to our hotel.

 

I thought I would let Wes tell you a little bit more about the race so I did a mini Q & A session:

(I asked Wes these questions and let him give you the answers himself!)

Wes Boston Marathon

(source)

How did you feel going into the marathon?

I wasn’t as confident going in because I was still coming off of an injury to my sacrum from falling around 12 weeks ago. I missed 6 weeks total of training. I wasn’t really sure what I was going to be able to do.

I got in 4 weeks of solid training as best I could, but still was very unsure going into the race. In the end I was just happy to be able to participate this year considering the injury.

 

How did you feel throughout the race?

Obviously you go through waives of good and bad, but I felt really comfortable through the half. I went through the half in a little under a 6 minute pace in 1:17. I was trying to play it conservative.

About mile 15 or 16 I started having stomach issues and felt like I had to go to the bathroom. I tried to stick it out until the end, but it was causing me to have to slow down and by mile 19 it had become too painful to keep going. For the first time ever in a race I had to stop in a porta-poty near a medical tent. I lost about 1.5 – 2 minutes.

After that I got back on the course and tried to get back into it, but it took a bit of time to get back up to speed. At that point I knew I would not PR and I was just trying to finish strong and not destroyed.

 

What was your favorite part of this year’s marathon?

My favorite part of Boston is right before you turn onto Boylston street and you see the final stretch. That is by far the best part.

 

What did you eat pre-race?

The night before I had angel hair pasta with marinara on the side and white bread. I snacked on a CLIF bar, gummy bears and some dry cereal throughout the night. I also had water and gatorade.

In the morning I had a plain bagel with honey, gatorade, part of a Power Bar, water, a couple Sports Beans and half a Chocolate Gu right before the start.

 

What are you plans now that Boston is over?

The first goal is to rest and make sure that I don’t have anymore lingering injuries.

I want to finish these last 2 rotations, graduate from medical school in June and get out of Erie.

In terms of running, I am looking to modify my training to a more speed based 10k approach. My current PR is a 2:32 and the only way to break that is to start focusing on speed.

The next marathon I have on schedule is Chicago in October, but that could possibly change based on my residency schedule.

 

There you have it! A little from my perspective and Wes. We both really enjoyed being there this year! It was an amazing experience and I can’t wait to go back.

 

Don’t forget to enter my Crazy Compression giveaway!

I will be back tomorrow to update you all a bit on my training and what my plans are going forward! Love getting a new plan put into action! Thanks for bearing with me as we traveled over the weekend!

 

Have you ever run Boston?

Do you have a certain focus of your current training?

About Sara

Welcome to my blog! My name is Sara and this blog documents my journey as a wife and a runner. I train hard and put my heart and soul into my running. My life is a crazy journey full of ups and downs, and I am here to share it all with you!

16 comments

  1. I can relate to Wes on so many levels! (except for his crazy fast time of course!) I didn’t meet my original goals due to injury prior to training as well as race day factors (for me it was heat as I trained in 30 and below). But changing my perspective once I realized this allowed me to take in a lot more than I would have if I were only focused on time. I really wound up enjoying the race even though it was pretty painful! Very sorry about the stomach issues for Wes, I used to get that all the time before changing my diet and it can feel incredibly defeating during a goal race :( Overall glad to hear it turned out fine!

    • Michele i’m sorry to hear it was a tough race for you! I love your outlook though and it looks like you were able to turn some negatives into positives! Everyone I have talked to that ran the race really struggled on the 2nd half. I don’t know if it was the heat, or the terrible winters for training, or what but it was a tough year! Glad you were able to run and persevere!! You will be back next year and will do even better (hopefully I will as well)!!

  2. Sounds like a great race despite the lack of full training. Most people could only wish for a finish time like that. I have to shave 7 minutes off my PR to qualify for Boston next year, so that is my plan. See you all in Chicago!

    • Ha I know :) He will act down about it, but so many (including myself) would kill for a time like that! I hope to qualify for Boston next year as well – hope to see you there!!

  3. Congrats Wes, that’s an amazing time despite the stomach issues!

  4. I love this recap! SO impressive to finish with such a great time despite so many issues. Congrats, Wes!

  5. Congrats to Wes!!! That is still an amazing time, even with coming off an injury and even making a pit stop. Wow!!! You’re pics are great. That is so cute that you saw a pregnant lady to announce the sex of their child. I hope he saw it.

    • Thank you Lacey! He knew she was going to do it, but she wouldn’t tell ANYONE until he saw it! I wanted to wait around so badly to find out after spending so long speaking with her!

  6. Ugh, stomach problems are the worst! He still did amazing, though, especially coming off of an injury and having to deal with the stomach. Congrats to him and to you for making it there!

  7. Great recap! Thank you for sharing the experience with us!

  8. Were you right by Max Brenner? If so, it’s a boy.
    Hahah she’s my friend so I have all the info :-)

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