Boston 2011

Friday, April 22, 2011

The Start

It was a little after 9:15AM when Bash, Chris, and I made our way down Grove St towards our corrals. The general layout of the area appeared to be different this year, I'm guessing that it was setup that way to accommodate the newly implemented three wave start.

It actually took us about 10 minutes of wandering around before we were even able to find Grove St!

The nerves were definitely starting to kick in now. I could feel the energy from the crowd around us as we just kept on moving forward down Grove. This part to me always feels like the start of a roller coaster ride. A nice, slow, unassuming start, and then BAM!

About a half-mile later we turned the corner onto Main St and Chris was the first to reach his corral. We wished each other luck and parted ways. Bash and I continued on further up Main St. This part is always a little sad due to the fact that you won't see each other again for at least another three hours, and that's if things go according to plan.

Bash went into his corral and we repeated the farewell ritual. I continued on down about two more sections until I reached corral #2, my home for the next 15 minutes.

Corral #2 is directly across from the church where the elites hang out before the race. Even then I couldn't catch a glimpse of Ryan Hall when he was introduced to a nice ovation. I looked around for a couple of minutes to see if I recognized anyone else in my corral. Nobody.

I eventually moved to the far right of my corral, with about five minutes to the start, in order to discard my throw away top. That was when I saw Jimmie Cochran and screamed "JIMMIE!!".

Unbeknownst to me, Jim Garcia was standing right next to me and probably thought that I thought that he was deaf! Before JC made his way over to me, JG shook my hand and congratulated me on receiving the GLRR Runner of the Year Award a few days prior. Then he said the oddest thing, "I'll see you at 18".

I didn't think anything of it at the time, and couldn't, since JC was all over me by that point. We gave each other a big man hug and smiled for the camera.

(Boston was just a warm up for Jimmie's day)

I removed my hat for the live rendition of the Star Spangled Banner, which gave me a chance to check on the two GU's that I had stashed away under my cap. I made sure to fasten my cap as tight as possible since the winds were howling at close to 20 miles per hour. Thank god it was supposed to be a tailwind today.

I think there was a fly over some point, but if they used a stealth fighter, we'll never know for sure.

I checked my Garmin one more time and then looked straight ahead.

The gun went off and the corral surged forward.

I was at least 30 yards from the front so it took me about 30 seconds of shuffling before I reached the official start of the race.

26.2 miles to go. 


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