I may not have gotten to run the Boston Marathon but I got to cross its finish line! Now how is that, you ask? During the Boston Athletic Association (BAA) 5k, the course runs down Boylston Street past the marathon finish line. Now that was cool! But I'm sure you're probably interested in hearing more about the race than a brief moment...
Our morning began under a clear blue sky with crisp, cool air. It was a beautiful day and one that was perfect for racing. Our group decided a long time ago that we were running this race for fun and we would run together. I knew Mom wouldn't want to push the pace so as not to expend too much energy before the marathon on Monday. And my foot and ankle had been bothering me a bit so this definitely wasn't a PR-worthy day!
We easily made our way to the starting line from our hotel which was only a few blocks away. Quite convenient! We snapped a few photos with the starting (and finish) line and then explored the race area.
It was all very well marked so that made it easy to navigate. We didn't check any bags since Dad was hanging out at the finish for us. I passed off my half-zip top to him and then we headed to our corrals. the corrals were self-seeded and we headed very near the back. While we were waiting, a girl recognized us and introduced herself. It was wonderful to meet Candace and hear about her runDisney race experiences and incredible weight loss journey! That was definitely one of the highlights of the morning! And a moment or two later, we heard the starting gun and we were off.
Mile 0-1: The beginning of the race was a bit crowded which we had heard, but given that we weren't shooting for any specific time goals, this didn't really bother us. In the first half mile or so, we saw the leaders heading back to the finish which was very exciting!
Mile 1-2: This stretch was an out and back portion on Commonwealth Avenue and was lined with beautiful blooming trees and residential homes. There were also a fair number of spectators out on this part of the course. It contained the only "hilly" section which was going down and up (twice) on an underpass.
Mile 2-3: We took a right on Hereford and a left on Boylston just like the marathon! Pretty exciting, although in full disclosure, I didn't notice the significance until we were on Boylston Street which was really exciting. And then crossing the Boston Marathon finish during the race was neat. I offered to take a photo of Mom but she passed. After all, we took one the day before at the expo and she would get the real thing on Monday.
Mile 3-Finish: We enjoyed running down the finish line chute together. There were tons of American Flags and great music which made it quite fun!
After the race, we received our medals (which was a pretty major bottleneck) and then headed back toward the main area to meet up with Dad. As we were walking, we ran into Candace again and snapped a photo this time!
We were easily able to meet up with Dad and headed to get some snacks. I love when races do a snack bag - it makes life so simple! Next we headed to get our race shirts which we loved! They are simple and classic shirts, bearing the BAA unicorn and race logo.
If you have the chance to run this race, it was definitely a great warm-up event for the marathon, or the "main event" for Adam and I. While it was an expensive 5k, I thought it was a neat experience and worth the price.