Oct 23, 2014

Shipping Off to Boston

I am very much looking forward to running the Boston Marathon again in April. I’ve ran Boston a few times before, but this year is different because there were so many Cape Bretoners (some of which are close friends) who qualified for the first time and were planning to run. I know how exciting it is to run in Boston for the first time and I want to be able to share the experience with the first timers from Cape Breton. By my count there are 18 Cape Bretoners registered for Boston including eight first timers: Justin Lalanne, Herbie Sakalauskas, Joey Tetford, Lee Ann Astephen, Carol Dakai, Gary Ross, Denis Lanoe, Donna Burns, and Renee MacDonald. Also making the trek to Boston from Cape Breton are:  Lauchie McKinnon, Terry Morris, Peter Hanna, Jerome Gerrior, Tanya Brann-Barrett, Kenny Maxwell, Kathy Sparling, and Kim Scattolon. I’m not 100% sure, but I don’t think we’ve ever had stronger representation at Boston from Cape Breton.

People often ask me: What is it about the Boston Marathon that makes it so special? It has a lot to do with history – the Boston Marathon was first staged in 1897. It also has a lot to do with the fact that you need to qualify for it that makes it so popular/special.  However, for me, Boston is so special mainly because of Johnny Miles – who was born and raised in Cape Breton and won the prestigious race not once (1926), but twice (1929). Only 11 Canadians have ever won Boston and I am proud to say a Cape Bretoner is one of them.

If Mother Nature has the effect she’s had on Cape Breton in recent years, training for Boston will no doubt be challenging. Training for any marathon is a challenge, but training for a marathon through January, February, and March is even more of a test. Once I complete the Philadelphia Marathon in November, my focus will shift entirely to the Ironman. To maximize success at the Ironman distance, it is best to devote several months of training to it. As a result, biking and swimming will be as much of a priority as running. None the less, I’ll prepare as best I can for Boston, and enjoy the experience regardless of the outcome!

John MacKinnon and I after my first Boston Marathon in 2008.

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