Tag Archives: boston marathon

Saturday Stories

It’s Saturday, time for another round of Saturday Stories a collection of some of my favourite articles and blog posts from the past week. As always, if you came across something this week you feel is worthy of mention here feel free to post a link below.

Here are this week’s stories…

Do you have a running streak on the go? If so, what is it?

For those of you who managed to qualify, don’t forget that registration for the Boston Marathon opens Monday.

I haven’t been for my run yet today, number 9 from this post might be stuck in my head when I do.

Need some tips to help prepare for race day?

Need tips on running with a dog?

Finally, the next #runchat takes places tomorrow night on Twitter.

My Blog Is 1 Year Old


This week marks the one year anniversary of my blog. I must admit, it is something that still surprises me at times. Blogging was never something I considered before my wife suggested it while she was on maternity leave.

Starting a blog of her own became one of her projects to stay busy while she was at home and after she got going she suggested the idea of a running blog for myself.

At first I was not sure what I would write about to keep a blog going for an extended period. I still do find myself suffering from writer’s block at times but I have also found that ideas for new posts sometimes come to me when I least expect them such as late at night or while I am running home.

For me the biggest benefit so far has been that the search for new topics to write about has helped my own running as I have found myself exploring issues I had not previously taken an interest in.

I hope you have enjoyed reading about my adventures so far and will continue to follow as I continue on my quest to qualify for the Boston Marathon!

The Past Week in Review

Going into last week my main goal was to get in my weekday runs before work due to the heat wave we were expected to receive last week. I ended up being mostly succesful in achieving thaat goal.

I was able to get up early and head for my runs early in the morning Tuesday – Thursday. Friday I was just too tired to get up for an early run and ended up settling for a short run after work.

My total mileage for the week was just over 60 km which represents my biggest week since the Ottawa Marathon at the end of May. Since then I had been averaging about 50 km most weeks.

With this morning’s 20.5 km run with the Chariot I should be on my way to at least matching last week’s mileage and as I officially start my training for the Philadelphia Marathon this week I think that leaves me with a good base and in a good position to start working toward my goal of improving on my time of 3:23 in this year,s Ottawa Marathon and hopefully a step closer to my eventual goal of qualifying for the Boston Marathon.

How did you handle the heat last week?

One Week until the Ottawa Marathon

In one week from today I will be recovering from the Ottawa Marathon. If you have read this blog before you’ll know my goal, and possibly obsession, is to qualify for the Boston Marathon.

In order to qualify for the 2012 Boston Marathon I need to run a 3:15 and with the new registration rules that went into effect this year my hope for next week is that I can run a 3;10 or just under that in order to give myself at least a five minute buffer from my qualifying time.

Right now I am both optimistic because I feel that I am in the best shape I have ever been and I am confident in my training but also nervous because this is a big goal for me to aim for and let’s face it a marathon is a long distance leaving plenty of time for something to go wrong.

If I go by the average time of my Yasso 800’s then I am right where I should be in terms of my progress. For those who are not familiar with the term, Yasso 800’s are a workout developed by Bart Yasso where you run hard for 800 m followed by a 400 m recovery jog. The idea is that the average time of your 800’s can predict your marathon finish time.

I completed two workouts involving Yasso 800’s during this training cycle. The first one involved 8 Yasso 800’s with an average time of 3:11 and the second workout involved 10 Yasso 800’s with an average time of 3:09. Hopefully the theory proves true for me as I will be quite pleased with a 3:09 or 3:11 next Sunday!

This morning I took my daughter for a 20 km run in her Chariot. The rest of the week will be pretty low key for me in terms of running. Tuesday I will go for an easy 8 km run, Wednesday I will go for an easy 6 km run, Thursday I will go for an 8 km run with 5 km at marathon pace and to end my training I will go for a very easy 3 km run Saturday.

You may also recall that I set a fundraising goal for myself again this year as part of Race Weekend. So far I have managed to achieve over 70% of my goal and should be able to reach that goal by the time I go pickup my race kit at the end of the week.

Boston Marathon Monday

If you did not follow coverage of the Boston Marathon today, some fast times were posted. 

Kenyan Geoffrey Mutai in Boston today ran the fastest marathon ever today. Mutai’s time of 2:03:02 beat the previous best of 2:03:59 set by Haille Gebrselassie in Berlin in 2008.

American runner Ryan Hall also set a quickest finishing time by an American, finishing in 2:04:58.

Unfortunately for both Mutai and Hall, neither runner will receive credit for an official World or American record. Why you might ask? The reason is that Boston is not certified as a record quality course by the International Association of Athletics Federations or the United States Track and Field Association because the elevation loss over the Boston course is three times the allowable limit and the start line is too far from the finish line.

This shouldn’t take away from their accomplishments today. They both deserve credit and accolades for great results today amongst a fast field. The top 10 men finished in under 2:09 today!

What did you think of today’s results in Boston?

In other news, I registered for the New York Marathon lottery today. I’m certainly not expecting to get in on the first try but I figure it is worth a try since I am not yet at a point where I could meet the qualifying standards. Thanks to Scott from iRunnerBlog for posting a reminder earlier.

Marathon Preview: Boston Marathon

Wednesday means it is time for another preview. Since the 115th running of the Boston Marathon is Monday I thought tonight would be a good night to write about Boston.

Boston is the world’s oldest marathon and the pinnacle of the sport for many. The race has continually grown in popularity since the 1960’s and qualifying for Boston become THE goal for many amateur runners, myself included.

The Boston Marathon is possibly most famous in the running community for Heartbreak Hill. The hill is an ascent between miles 20 and 21. It is known as Heartbreak Hill comes from the 1936 race when john Kelly caught Ellison Brown, patting him on the shoulder on the way by. The move apparently re-energized Brown who pulled away from Brown and went on to win.

The course itself is a point to point course starting in Hopkinton and ending at Copley Square in Boston. The course is known as being a difficult because of a downhill trend until it reaches the Newton Hills, which culminate with Heartbreak Hill, at the 16 mile mark. You can view the course map here.

You may already be aware that due to incrreasing popularity the Boston Athletic Association announced changes to the registration process earlier this year. If not, I wrote about the changes here. You can also check out the FAQ section of the Boston Marathon website here.

Have you run the Boston Marathon before? Are you trying to qualify for it?

Rest Day Monday

After a few intense workouts on my legs since Wednesday – hill repeats Wednesday, a tempo run Friday, a day of skiing Saturday and a long run yesterday my legs were starting to feel tired. As a result,  I am enjoying a day of rest before I resume my training tomorrow.

Since I am not running today I have been doing a bit of reading about running. Earlier I came across an article about the Top 10 Marathons Around the Globe as selected by www.cheapflights.com

Of course the list includes some of the standard marathons that are on everyone’s bucket list – Boston, New York City, London, Berlin. However there are also a few that I would not have thought of before reading the article. It also leaves me with a few more ideas for marathons to profile.

What do you think of the list? Have you completed any of these marathons so far or are you planning on running them in the future? Are there other marathons that did not make the list that you think should be there?

I also came across this story about Gladys Burrill who was honoured by the Hawaii House of Representatives for being the oldest woman to finish a marathon. She completed the Honolulu Marathon last year at the age of 92! I don’t know about you but I think that is an amazing record.

In terms of my training, I will be back on rack tomorrow with an easy 12 km run to get me ready for my first round of speedwork on Wednesday.

New Registration Process for the Boston Marathon

Yesterday the B.A.A. announced the long awaited changes to the registration policy for the Boston Marathon. You can read about them here.

In summary, the changes for next year involve the implementation of a rolling schedule allowing those who qualified fastest to register first. On September 12 runners who beat their qualifying time by 20 minutes or more will be able to register first. On September 14 runners who beat their qualifying time by 10 minutes or more will be able to register. On September 16 runners who beat their qualifying time by 5 minutes or more will be able to register. Finally, registration will open for all qualified runners on September 19.

In addition to the rolling schedule for registration, in 2013 the qualifying times will be dropped by across the board by 5 minutes.

I have mentioned before that my goal was to run a Boston qualifying time this year. I ran a 3:22 in October and I think with more training this year 3:15 is a realistic goal. However, with the new changes it will be even tougher as I will have to push harder and try aim to go faster than 3:15 in order to increase my odds of being accepted.

I read a couple comments yesterday comparing the rolling registration schedule to university applicatons where the best students get accepted first. I think that is a fair comparison. The B.A.A. was faced with a tough choice, they were never going to be able to please everyone. I think they have come up with a reasonable compromise to the situation they were faced with.

As for myself, qualifying for Boston just got tougher but my goal is still to get myself to Boston. I am not sure if qualifying is still a realistic goal for this year but I am certainly going to train for it and give it a shot.

If you want to read what some other bloggers had to say about the changes you can head here, here, here or here.

What do you think of the changes?

Boston Marathon training hampered by snow and ice

My training has not yet been impacted by the weather yet this winter but it certainly can always be a factor when training for a spring marathon.

According to this article the heavy snowfalls in the Northeastern United States so far this year have had an impact some runners’ training schedules for this year’s Boston Marathon.

As for my own training, so far I have had to take an extra rest day due to freezing rain but I have yet not had to postpone any planned runs due to snow or extreme cold – although now that I say this watch Ottawa get hit with a record snowfall or record cold temperatures!

As I have mentioned on here before, I won’t consider running on a treadmill unless the roads and sidewalks are impassable or it is just too cold to be outside for an extended period. How do you deal with the snow and ice, do you still run outside?