The sun is shining, the birds are singing, and the city is buzzing with pride as the 118th Boston Marathon has just begun. The much-anticipated race is finally here, and even though I’m watching the live stream from my office, it really is an exciting day to be in Boston. The months leading up to the marathon have brought not only memories from last year’s tough day and increased security and police activity, but a swelling pride for an already proud city. I haven’t been able to walk around the city for the past week without tears pooling, as Back Bay has been draped in blue and yellow and adorned with unicorns. The talk around the event has been about patriotism and standing strong; keeping going even in the face of fear and uncertainty. We have seen people forcibly knocked down and standing up stronger than before. My friend and coworker lost both of her legs at last year’s marathon, and she is running today on her new prosthetics, inspiring the world with each step. And until today, that was all I was thinking about.

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My coworker Celeste (on left) and her daughter Sydney were both injured in last year’s marathon.

My train to work at 6:30 this morning was packed with runners going downtown to be shuttled to the start line in Hopkinton. Until this morning, I had been a little out of touch with how many people were actually going to be taking on the physical challenge of RUNNING A MARATHON. I listened as marathoners chatted with each other on the train, asking where they were from, and had they done the marathon before, and how their IT bands were bothering them. Some runners sat quietly with nervous faces, mentally preparing to run for 4+ hours. City pride aside, these people reminded me that the Boston Marathon is about the runners; runners that have trained so hard, set their mind on a goal, and pushed through unbelievable obstacles to achieve them. I was emotionally overwhelmed on my way to work this morning thinking about runners making their dreams come true with not wishing or hoping, but hard work.  

It’s a great day to be in Boston; it’s a great day to be a runner, so cheer loudly and remember that each of the 36,000 people running today’s marathon has worked their absolute butt off to be there today, and it truly is incredible. You can do anything.

Tune in tomorrow for a B.A.A. 5k Race Recap!