Saturday, April 21, 2012


Last week, we were in Boston to cheer on our friend Kris, who was running in the Boston Marathon. She qualified at Grandma's and this was her first time in Boston.

I've never had the desire to run a stand-alone marathon. While I really like running as part of a triathlon, I don't particularly like the act of running itself. Sure, I do it because I have to, but I don't exactly see me wanting to run a stand-alone marathon anytime soon.

Then I was in Boston.

In addition to getting to see a lot of things with T's college campus (Boston University) and parts of the town I have seen and not seen before, we also got to witness the most coveted marathon on the planet. And I'm not going to lie, there was a part of me that wanted to be an athlete running in the event, not just cheering on.

Which made me think about something. As an athlete, do we have the right to be envious of others' achievements? I mean, certainly our community is one of supporting each other, but it's also an ego-driven community. If it wasn't, you wouldn't see people wearing Boston Marathon jackets, Ironman visors (guilty), various tattoos of all sizes and achievements, medals hanging from the wall (guilty), race bibs, and the list goes on and on and on. Most athletes need to have their egos filled from time to time.

When the marathon was going on, I was cheering nonstop for an hour. I shouted words of encouragement to runners passing by. One guy came over to me and asked if I could level the course next year, another waved when I shouted "Ironman Family!", and more just smiled as they knew that total strangers were supporting them. I remember last year doing Boulder 70.3 and hearing lots of support from both athletes and people on the side of the road, smiling at the encouragement and knowing I would do the same thing someday. At the time though, I didn't wonder if any of them envied me.

Now I wonder.


  1. Yeah, Boston is pretty cool! I've stood on the site where the marathon finishes :-) I'm also friends with a two time winner of the event!

    I've never wanted to do a marathon, or else I would have. It takes a lot of training to qualify for Boston. Many people's pipe dream, I'm sure.

  2. Hey Dr. J!

    Boston is a fun town for sure. The marathon is pretty exciting too. And I have no doubt you could excel in the marathon, or pretty much anything you put your mind to. Hockey perhaps? ;-)

    As for the dream, it certainly is a bucket list for a lot of athletes. Most never see it as a reality though. I think it's always important to keep everything we do in perspective. We can run whenever we want, and sometimes, that's enough.

  3. True confession:

    I played a little hockey as a kid, but, here it comes, I never could learn to skate backward :-(

    And that was before my karate training as a fighter so a hockey team had no use for me :-)

    When I was in med school, I ran with a lady friend a lot of the time. I was pretty fast (7:15 minute miles for the half marathon) She, running my pace being a women, was very fast and took a top 15 finish in the Philly marathon which qualified her to then run Boston!