Friday, April 15, 2011

Chasing the dream - 3 days till Boston "an emotional day"

It was a beautifully sunny, yet slightly crisp day in Boston today.  I slept like a log last night - thanks to the half a bottle of white wine I polished off before bed.  The solid sleep was a welcome surprise since I don't usually sleep well in hotels.  I'm doing surprisingly well on the sleep front considering I'm not in my own bed.  This just might work...

There were two key items on my "to-do" list today:
1. get my final training run in.
2. drive the race route today.

I put a big, fat check mark beside each one of these activities today; however, driving the race route took WAY longer than I thought it would.  I've deducted that Boston has a bit of a traffic problem - but that's a whole other blog post all together.

After breakfast, I set out for Hopkinton - that's where the Boston Marathon begins.  Hopkinton is a quaint little town West of Boston - far enough out of town that I had to pass through two toll booths to get there.  To travel from Boston to Hopkinton and back will cost you nearly $6 in tolls, so perhaps I'll just deduct that amount from the entry fee of the marathon as a "cost savings".  Yes, there are many benefits to running - they just keep adding up.

After spending some "personal time" at the start line, I hopped in my car and began the drive along the historic, and epic, marathon route.  As I set out on highway 135, I was flooded with emotions.  It wasn't long before I was chocking back tears while scouting the first few kilometers towards Boston.  I decided to turn around and record the moment...

After a full day of driving the marathon route, I got changed and set out for my last training run before the marathon.  I have been on a training schedule since January.  For 12 weeks, every run has been a strategic piece of the marathon. - an event that, at times, seemed so far away that I might never make it to the event without first crumbling under the pressure of training fatigue.  But today, the final training run was upon me.  I drove downtown, parked near Boston Commons, and set out for my final, leisurely 7km run from there.

Downtown Boston is a joy to run in.  The city is as historic as New York, but with its own unique flavour.  I soon found a paved trail along the water's edge were dozens of other runners were clocking their daily miles.  As I ran East, the sun warmed my back while it crept towards the horizon.  My shadow kept pace in front of me - providing a monochromatic mirror of my striding legs and pumping arms.  Oh how I've missed running; I was divinely happy.  On the way back I ran to Copley Square.  This is where the finish line is, and where my Boston dreams will come to an end in just three days.  The sense of belonging was warm in my belly and I knew I wanted to find my way back here again someday.

But that's another dream.  Let's put this one to bed first - and in three days, I will.

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