In the past, I have now seen the future.
Yesterday’s marathon was a truly special event on so many levels and it was an honor to have run and participated in it. It was testament to the strength of our spirit and the power of our community. Yet, if there is one thing that I took away from yesterday’s experience it is what the Boston Marathon will always continue to be defined by.
Pragmatically speaking, it will be always be defined by running and 26.2. Yesterday, 36,000 of us lined up in Hopkinton to make the trek into Boston. It was a beautiful day, a little on warm side for some, but still beautiful. Yet, runners from all different walks of life toed the line and ran the race. Accomplishing this is no small feat and whether you finished in just over two hours or six, this is a feat to be proud of and celebrated.
The Boston Marathon will always be defined by strength. From the elites, to the qualifiers, to Team Hoyt, to the amputees, to those just proving to themselves that “I can do this,” the Boston Marathon is a true feature of our collective strength. One of the beauties of this fact is that it showcases that this strength does not reside in the few, but rather in the many. It demonstrated to me that strength comes in all shapes, forms, and sizes. This is something we clearly demonstrated yesterday and will continue to do so for years to come.
The Boston Marathon will always be defined by community. While this always has been on display in the years I have been running and is something that really makes Boston unique, it seemed to be turned up to “11” yesterday (please excuse the Spinal Tap reference). The support that everyone showcased along the way was just amazing and that we collectively turned out it in droves, just clearly demonstrated that one of the true powers of the marathon lies in it being not just an athletic event, but a “community event.” Boston Strong was displayed in full force yesterday, and I was just so proud to have been there to witness it.
The Boston Marathon will always be defined by celebration. It’s hard to describe, but as I looked around at my fellow runners and those watching and supporting us, I could truly feel a sense of joy in terms of what was happening. We were not just running or merely watching a race and cheering on runners; we were honestly celebrating the power of life in itself. One could truly sense an amplified level of excitement and passion that was being exhibited both on the course and around it from Hopkinton to Boston.
Thank you to everyone who came out to run and who lined the course yesterday. And a very, very special thank you to all the volunteers. Everyone truly exhibited the best in what Boston has to offer and what the Boston Marathon is all about. I always knew what the Boston Marathon was not about, but yesterday truly reaffirmed that in years to come, the future of this race will always be defined by the grace, goodness, strength, and community that we all collectively displayed and were a part of on April 21, 2014.