“You never know how many miles you’ll have to run chasing a dream”
For nearly two years, I have chased after a dream. I mean LITERALLY ran after it. My dream is to qualify for the Boston Marathon.
Qualifying for the Boston Marathon is the holy grain for many runners. In order to BQ, you have to run a marathon in a certain amount of time which differs depending on age/gender. My qualifying time is under 3 hours and 35 minutes. #FML
Run Brie Run
My previous attempts to qualify for Boston include the Lehigh Valley Health Network Via Marathon in Pennsylvania and the Rock & Roll Marathon in Raleigh, NC. Looking back, both races turned out to be great learning experiences. For instance, at Lehigh Valley I learned (the hard way) about the importance of proper hydration. My legs cramped around mile 22 which forced me to walk for several miles, hurting my overall time. Since then, I make sure to drink water/Nunn before and during the race and also carry salt packets to help prevent cramps.
- Runner Tip: Runners with the Grand Strand Running Club taught me to carry McDonald’s salt packets during the race. You can break it open and take some while you’re running. Sometimes I roll my chewing gum in salt and chew it while I’m running. TMI…but it helps.
The Raleigh race was my introduction to rolling hills. I was used to flatter courses and struggled to keep a good pace while climbing. Training in hilly Southwest Virginia for the past year has helped me to run hills more efficiently. I’ve found that taking small, quick steps can be helpful.
I’m currently winding down an 18 week schedule leading to the DC Rock & Roll Marathon on March 14th.
Here’s a look at a recent week:
Monday – Crossfit or Rest day
Tuesday – 8 miles
Wednesday – VO2 max 9 miles with 5 X 1,000 @5k race pace
Thursday – Crossfit or Rest day
Friday – 10 miles
Saturday – 5 miles recovery
Sunday – 17 miles
Over the past 4 months, I’ve logged close to 1,000 miles which include runs over hills, through neighborhoods and on cold winter days. Brrrrrr!!! I’ve enjoyed the beauty of seeing the sun rise and watching the moon disappear during the early morning runs. I’ve also had the pleasure of having supportive running partners who share advice and provide encouragement.
Chasing the Dream
So far, chasing my dream to Boston Qualify has included disappointments, setbacks, blisters, black toenails and several days where I wanted to quit. However, the journey has also made me a more disciplined and mentally-tough person. I’ve learned to challenge myself and push through tough workouts. Like any dream, BQ’ing is going to take a lot of hard work and guts to achieve.
There’s no telling what’s going to happen at the Rock&Roll Marathon on March 14th . ( Please no snow!). But after putting in countless hours and miles of training over the years, I hope to run this next 26.2 mile race fast enough to finally catch my dream.