Friday, March 31, 2006

Quote of the Day

"I can't believe I just ran 2:08 and only finished second!"

-Dick Beardsley, after running stride for stride with
winner Alberto Salazar in the 1982 Boston Marathon.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Win a chance to run Boston with Olympian Dan Browne, Ironman Peter Reid and Elite Marathoner Josh Cox.

Runners registered for the Boston Marathon can enter to win the opportunity to be paced by the best.

From the starting line to finish line, even Heartbreak Hill, PowerBar athletes – Dan Browne, Peter Reid and Josh Cox – will run the 26.2-mile course with one lucky winner as personal time pacers and motivational coaches.

Runners can enter to win at the PowerBar booth #518 on Saturday, April 15 at the John Hancock Sports & Fitness Expo (World Trade Center, Boston.) The winner will be announced on Sunday, April 16.

Plus, don’t miss the athletes at the Expo where they’ll be discussing sports nutrition, training tips, and more. Check it out Saturday, April 15 at 1pm.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

You're a Star!

WGBH’s award-winning science series is seeking volunteers to participate in the filming of Marathon (working title), an hour-long Nova documentary scheduled to debut on PBS in 2007. Marathon will follow a group of first-time marathoners as they train with the Tufts University Marathon Challenge team to participate in one of the world’s most prestigious—and physically challenging—sporting events: the Boston Marathon.

In the interest of science and in promoting a healthy lifestyle through physical activity, Nova has been granted an unprecedented opportunity by the Boston Athletic Association to explore the remarkable transformation the average person undergoes as a result of training for a marathon. Exercise scientists, doctors and nutrition scientists at Tufts University will use sophisticated technology to monitor the physical transformations the participants undergo. State-of-the-art animation will allow viewers to explore changes taking place inside the body and out, and personal diaries will reveal the highs and lows along the way.

To be eligible, would-be marathoners must:
*Be age 21 or over
*Be attempting to run a marathon for the first time
*Not currently be engaged in a regular exercise program or routine
*Be able to participate in training runs in the Boston area on a regular basis

For more information and complete details on how to apply to participate in Marathon, visit or contact Mary Kennedy at (617) 636-6582 or via e-mail at The deadline for applications is May 1, 2006.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Baghdad to Boston

Kudos to Boston Globe writer Brian MacQuarrie for a nice story in Sunday’s Globe.

In MacQuarrie’s article we meet sergeant first class Joe Williams of the US Army’s 10th Mountain Division. Williams, a former cross-country runner, is currently stationed in Baghdad. But in a few weeks he’ll be in Hopkinton at the starting line of the Boston Marathon. Turns out the B.A.A. accepted Williams’ special request to run Boston—he won a marathon on his base in December 05 in a qualifying time of 2:59:57. So the 37-year old Williams will use his only two-week leave of the year to visit the Hub and run the Boston Marathon. Now that’s dedication.

According to the BAA, Williams will be the first US soldier serving in Iraq to take leave and run the Boston Marathon.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Boston Marathon Volunteers

Tonight I wanted to tip my running cap to the thousands of men and women who will donate their time and energy on Marathon Monday to make it as usual, a first-class event. To the registration workers, water station volunteers, medical personnel, security, and so many others, I'd like to send out a big “thank you” in advance.

Not running Boston this year?
You’ll walk away knowing you helped put on one of the greatest one-day events in the world-- and you’ll walk away wearing a highly-coveted Adidas volunteer jacket.

Volunteers must be 18 years. For more information, contact:

Elisabeth Worthing
Community and Volunteer Services Coordinator
Boston Athletic Association
40 Trinity Place, 4th FloorBoston, MA 02116
617-236-1652 X 2630

Check out the volunteer guidelines before you call or e-mail.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

More Marathon tips from L St. Running Club Coach Chris Forti

A wise man once said "Hills are your friends." So today running expert Chris Forti provides Part 2 of his hill running advice with tips on powering up and over those friendly hills. Take it away, Chris...

In the Boston Marathon, what goes down must come up … in Newton. You’ve gotten through the downhills, you have passed the halfway point, and now you might be getting a little tired. But this is no time to dwell on it, you’ve got some hills to climb. Running uphill isn’t easy for everyone and can be downright difficult for anyone in this portion of the race.

Here are some tips on how to get up those pesky hills. First of all, take a couple deep breaths and relax. Don’t go into an uphill already breathing heavy, as it will make you feel worse than you really are, and the time it takes to relax will be worth it in the end.

As you start to climb the hill, shorten up your stride a little bit, because if you try to keep the same stride length, your center of gravity will change and your quadriceps will have to do more work to pull you up the hill. Lean forward and if you can, try to focus on having your midfoot or forefoot strike the ground first.

Since you are in a race, there will be people around you. Use the people around you to get up the hill. You might get passed by one or two people, but overall, just stay with the group as they progress up the hill. Never get fixated on the performance of one person thinking they will take you to the promise land. They could be worse at hill running than you and slow you down with them.

Lastly, every once in a while glance up to see where the top of the hill is. Once you start cresting the hill, keep with your hill-running form and count to five slowly. By then time you count to five, your feet will now have gotten to the crest that your eyes have already seen.

These are just some tips you can use while running on hills, but don’t wait until Marathon Monday to try them out. You still have a couple of weeks left in your training to give these a try. Being the sponge that you are in absorbing all the information you can get also means having the curiosity to experiment with this information. You’ll find that some things will work for you (either as it has been told to you or with some personal modification), and other strategies will just feel downright uncomfortable for you. Go with what feels good for you; go with whatever makes you a more confident runner.


Saturday, March 25, 2006

Boston Marathon tips from L St. Running Club Coach Chris Forti

Thanks to L Street volunteer running coach Chris Forti for today's tips. Chris has impressive credentials - a former cross-country, indoor, and outdoor high school track coach, a Member and Competition Chairman of the HFC Striders Track Club, and a Member of the Massachusetts State Track Officials Association. Chris has also put up some speedy PR's: mile-- 4:28.56; 5,000m-- 15:21.24 10,000m-- 32:14.76; half marathon-- 1:14:20; marathon-- 3:03:44.

Today he'll provide some tips on running downhill and tomorrow I'll post his advice on you guessed it - running uphill.

Thanks Chris. Take it away...

I come from a background of running in high school and college, so my perspective on running is slightly different than that of people who pick it up either in college, soon after college, or in their 40s, 50s and beyond. Ever since I've come to run with the L Street Running Club, I've learned to listen, see, and understand the challenges that many people face when they first start running, which I can tell you as a former high school coach, are different than those of a freshman in high school. I find that once adults get the running "bug," they become a sponge, listening and trying new ideas and tactics. Adults are more open to new ideas and are not afraid to step backward to gain two or three steps forward.

The Boston Marathon presents a lot of challenges in both the training for and running of the race. Training in the middle of winter for a spring race, preparing for the uphills and downhills in the race, and dealing with the logistics of actually getting to the start line itself, and getting there healthy are all things you'll needs to work on and decide before race day.

If you are training for Boston, by now you've probably been on the course once or twice to familiarize yourself with the Newton hills. Since Boston is a race consisting of lots of hills, both up and down, spending time thinking about how you want to "attack" them is always a good idea. The race starts with downhills, so I'll also begin my tips there.

Downhill running sounds easy right? How hard can it be? You are not expending any extra energy, and you are going faster. We wish all races could be that way! But running down hills presents some factors that need to be addressed. I find is most runners are “afraid” of running downhill. They will lean back, allowing their heel to strike the ground first, and they don’t fully take advantage of the downhill surface on which they are running. For most people running downhill, their heel strikes the ground first and that sends the impact straight up the leg to their quadriceps muscles -- which makes them fatigue from absorbing all that shock. These are the same quadriceps you will need to rely on to pull your knees up when you enter Newton at mile 16.

A simple way to combat this is by adjusting your running form. Lean your chest ‘forward’ slightly and aim to have your midfoot or forefoot strike the ground first. Since most people are used to leaning backward while running downhill, by leaning your chest ‘forward’ it will in fact put your chest on the same vertical plane as the balls of your feet. Don’t try to reach with your feet or overstride while running downhill -- as this will take away from your ‘forward-leaning’ running form and you’ll be back to landing on your heels again. Using this running form will take some of the stress off your quadriceps and you’ll glide down the hills with ease.


Friday, March 24, 2006

Set your TIVO.

If you’re running the course on Marathon Monday, don’t forget to set your TIVO to OLN or if you live in the Boston area, CBS 4 or WCVB Channel 5. You’ll be part of the action all day plus get to catch all the pre-race stories and coverage at night. Check your local listings.

OLN - April 17 -
Live Coverage: 11:30 a.m.- 2:30 p.m. ET
Same day re-air: 5:00 p.m.- 7 p.m. ET

COMING TOMORROW: Don’t miss some great advice from L Street Running Club Coach Chris Forti. He'll provide some useful hill-running tips that you can still try out in your training before attacking the Boston course.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

The Road to Boston Runs Through Columbus

Want to qualify for the Boston Marathon next year? The Columbus Marathon is your place. Last year 18.3% of the field qualified for Boston and Columbus has the second highest number of Boston Marathon qualifiers (per capita) every year. Visit for details.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Did you know...

Due to United States involvement in World War I, a Boston Marathon relay race was held in 1918. 10-man military teams were formed, and a team from Camp Devens in Ayer, MA won with a time of 2:24:53.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Show Me the Money!!

How much prize money goes to the winner of the Boston Marathon?

a) $250,000
b) $100,000
c) $400,000
d) $50,000

Bonus: What did John McDermott receive for winning the 1st Boston Marathon in 1897?

a) A bicycle
b) A B.A.A. jacket
c) An oak plaque
d) Dinner at the Union Oyster House

For answers, click on the "Comments" link below.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Do you believe in unicorns?

In 1887--ten years before the first Boston Marathon - the unicorn was chosen as the symbol of the Boston Athletic Association. According to the B.A.A. website, the unicorn “represents an ideal: something to pursue, but which can never be caught. In pursuit of the unicorn, however, athletic competitors can approach excellence (but never fully achieve it.) It is this pursuit to push oneself to his or her own limit and to the best of one’s ability which is at the core of athletics.”

The horned creature is also a symbol of purity. And in Chinese mythology, the unicorn is believed to be an animal of good omen that came to humans only on important missions.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

John Hancock Announces 2006 Boston Marathon Elite International Field

BOSTON, MA – March 16, 2006 – John Hancock Financial Services today announced its elite team of 31 marathon runners from 13 countries, including American Olympic silver medalist Meb Keflezighi, defending champion Hailu Negussie from Ethiopia, and past champions Timothy Cherigat and Robert Kipkoech Cheruiyot of Kenya. The race is set for Monday, April 17, 2006. This will be John Hancock’s 21st year as principal sponsor of the event.

Leading the field is defending champion Negussie who will face 2005 runner-up Wilson Onsare of Kenya and two of the fastest men in the world last year: Benjamin Maiyo, who was second in Chicago and Los Angeles, and Patrick Ivuti, a two-time World Cross Country silver medalist. Other challengers include 2004 and 2003 Boston champions Timothy Cherigat and Robert Kipkoech Cheruiyot.

Two American Olympians: 2004 silver medalist Meb Keflezighi and Alan Culpepper, who finished fourth last year, will lead a strong U.S. contingent that includes rising stars Brian Sell and Clint Verran. Sell and Verran recently led Team USA to fourth place at the 2005 World Marathon Cup, the highest finish ever for the Americans.

Other top men’s runners include 2:06 marathoners Tesfaye Tola of Ethiopia and 2005 Seoul winner William Kiplagat of Kenya. Tanzanian John Yuda, a two-time World Half Marathon bronze medalist, also expects a top finish, as does John Korir of Kenya, the number one ranked road racer in the world in 2005 who makes his much anticipated debut in Boston. Additional talent from Ethiopia, the Netherlands, Kenya, and Colombia complete the elite field.

On the women’s side, Olympian and two-time Boston runner-up Elfenesh Alemu faces one of the most competitive fields in recent years. Eight of her challengers have re-established their personal best times in 2005. Leading the charge is Jelena Prokopcuka of Latvia and Ethiopia’s Derartu Tulu. Prokopcuka comes in with a national record and wins at both the 2005 New York City and 2005 Osaka Marathons. Tulu, who is the most accomplished female athlete from her country, recently set a personal best at the 2005 World Championships. Tulu has competed in the past four Olympic Games, earning two gold medals and one bronze in the 10,000 meters.


Men’s Open Field / Personal Best
Wilson Onsare, Kenya / 2:06:47 (Paris, 2003)
William Kiplagat, Kenya / 2:06:50 (Amsterdam, 1999)
Tesfaye Tola, Ethiopia / 2:06:57 (Amsterdam, 1999)
Benjamin Maiyo, Kenya / 2:07:09 (Chicago, 2005)
Patrick Ivuti, Kenya / 2:07:46 (Chicago, 2005)
Julius Ruto, Kenya / 2:08:10 (Paris, 1999)
Hailu Negussie, Ethiopia / 2:08:16 (Hofu, 2002)
Robert Kipkoech Cheruiyot, Kenya / 2:08:59 (Milan, 2002)
Timothy Cherigat, Kenya / 2:09:34 (San Sebastian, 2002)
Alan Culpepper, United States / 2:09:41 (Chicago, 2002)
Mebrahtom Keflezighi, United States / 2:09:53 (New York, 2004)
John Yuda, Tanzania / 2:10:13 (London, 2004)
Luc Krotwaar, Netherlands / 2:10:13 (Fukuoka, 2003)
Alirio Carrasco, Colombia / 2:12:09 (Chicago, 2003)
Brian Sell, United States / 2:13:22 (Chicago, 2004)
Clint Verran, United States / 2:14:17 (Chicago, 2002)
John Korir, Kenya / Debut
Deriba Merga, Ethiopia / Debut

Women’s Open Field / Personal Best
Reiko Tosa, Japan / 2:22:46 (London, 2002)
Jelena Prokopcuka, Latvia / 2:22:56 (Osaka, 2005)NR
Derartu Tulu, Ethiopia / 2:23:30 (Helsinki, 2005)
Rita Jeptoo, Kenya / 2:24:22 (Helsinki, 2005)
Elfenesh Alemu, Ethiopia / 2:24:29 (London, 2001)
Alevtina Biktimirova, Russia / 2:25:12 (Frankfurt, 2005)
Zivile Balciunaite, Lithuania / 2:25:15 (Tokyo, 2005) NR
Olivera Jevtic, Serbia and Montenegro / 2:25:23 (Rotterdam, 2003) NR
Bruna Genovese, Italy / 2:25:35 (Tokyo, 2001)
Kiyoko Shimahara, Japan / 2:26:14 (Hokkaido, 2005)
Olesya Nurgalieva, Russia / 2:29:35 (New York, 2005)
Kutre Dulecha, Ethiopia / 2:30:06 (Amsterdam, 2005)
Tina Connelly, Canada / 2:34:43 (Sacramento, 2003)

NR = National Record

Source: BAA

Saturday, March 18, 2006

One more pint?

Yes, St. Patty's Day was yesterday. And yes, you've got a long Sunday run ahead of you tomorrow. But come on---you've got room for another pint.

So run down to The Point, 147 Hanover St., Boston tonight and check out this Boston Marathon party and charity auction. It's a Saturday Night SPRAWL - St. Patty's Runs All Weekend Long.

Event starts at 7pm. Please see for details.

Friday, March 17, 2006

It’s Absolutely NOT About the Bike

Kristin Armstrong, the former wife of seven-time Tour De France champion Lance Armstrong, will run the 110th Boston Marathon on Monday, April 17.

The 34-year old mother of three and contributing editor to Runner’s World finished the 2003 Dallas White Rock Marathon (her first) in a time of 3:48:24, the 2004 ING New York Marathon in 3:45:35, and the 2005 LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon in a speedy 3:35: 29.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Boston Marathon Story from Jeff Galloway

In 1996, I ran Boston with my Dad. It was his last marathon. Sharing Boston with him, at age 75, was a wonderful experience that I will treasure for the rest of my life. As we approached the finish, he took off, and passed several people down the final stretch. He has told numerous people that he would have run a lot faster in that race if I hadn't held him back.

Thanks Jeff.

Olympian Jeff Galloway, who has finished 5th in the Boston Marathon, has helped over 500,000 runners, at all levels, work towards their goals through his e-coaching, one-day running schools, retreats, books, training programs and individual consultations. His books and free information are available at

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Happy Birthday B.A.A.

Today the Boston Athletic Association turns 119 years old. On March 15, 1887, the Boston Athletic Association was established, and in May of that year ground was broken for a clubhouse on Exeter Street. The membership fee was $40 with annual dues of $30.

It would be another 10 years before the first running of the B.A.A. Road Race, later know as the Boston Marathon.

The first president of the B.A.A. was Robert F. Clark, who with other influential men in the community set the following objective for their club: " to encourage all manly sports and promote physical culture.”

Today the president of the B.A.A. is Thomas Grilk.

It's your birthday.We gon' party like it's yo birthday.
-50 Cent

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Boston Marathon tips from Jeff Galloway

His name is synonymous with running. His training advice has helped thousands of beginner and elite runners reach their goals. And when you first started running, a friend may have suggested you read his book, the bible of running, Galloway's Book on Running.

Olympian Jeff Galloway, who has finished 5th in the Boston Marathon, has helped over 500,000 runners, at all levels, work towards their goals through his e-coaching, one-day running schools, retreats, books, training programs and individual consultations. His books and free information are available at

This week I contacted Jeff via e-mail and asked him for some words of advice on running Boston. Here's what he had to say...

1. You'll see in my book Marathon that I recommend slowing down the pace of the long run (2 min/mi slower than marathon pace) and inserting liberal walk breaks. Because of the many hills on the course, I recommend building the distance of the last long one up to 28 or 29 miles, running them every 3 weeks.

2. If this is your first Boston, I recommend slowing down your pace during, at least, the first 20 miles. Enjoy the crowds, the historic course, fellow runners, and the whole weekend.

3. Slow your pace when the temperature rises. After having trained tens of thousands of runners through summers in the South my "Galloway temperature adjustment" is as follows: slow down by 30 seconds a mile for every 5 degrees above 60F. If you slow down early you will tend to avoid heat disease, and be the one who is passing people at the end...instead of passing out.

Thanks Jeff.

Tomorrow: A birthday celebration
Thursday: Jeff Galloway's most memorable Boston Marathon


Monday, March 13, 2006

Boston Marathon event at Morton's

Special thanks to a loyal reader for pointing out this marathon party at Morton's, located at the finish line of the Boston Marathon.

The food, drink and service at Morton's never disappoints. And proceeds from the event benefit ReadBoston, one of the official charities of the Boston Marathon.

So enjoy yourself one more time before Marathon Day... and help a good cause.

Location: Morton's, 699 Boylston St. Boston

Date: Friday, March 31

Time: 6-9 pm

Cost: $60 per guest

For more information or to make your reservation, please call 617.266.5858.

COMING TOMORROW: Don't miss Boston Marathon tips from Jeff Galloway!

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Running to make a difference.

One of the eighteen official charities participating in the 2006 Boston Marathon is the Pine Street Inn. The Pine Street Inn helps 1,200 men and women each day with everything from a hot meal and a comfortable bed to job training. The Pine Street Inn offers hope to thousands of Boston’s homeless.

If you’d like to learn more about Pine Street and support one of their Boston Marathon runners, click here. Or check out a story that was in today’s Globe about Team Pine Street's runners.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Boston bands put bounce in your stride.

For safety reasons, the B.A.A. states “the use of headphones are not permitted” on the Boston Marathon course. But hey, that doesn’t mean you can’t rock out on your training runs with some music from Boston’s best bands.

So get out your iPod and download these ten tunes by Boston-area bands. They’re sure to help you pick up the pace on your next run. Feel free to add your favorite songs from Boston-based bands in the comments section below.

Lemonheads - - Mrs. Robinson
Aerosmith - Love in an Elevator
Mighty Mighty Bosstones – Where’d You Go
Letters to Cleo - Here and Now
The Cars – Let’s Go
Boston – More than A Feeling
Godsmack - Voodoo
White Zombie – More Human Than Human
Marky Mark - Good Vibrations
J. Geils Band - Land Of A Thousand Dances (originally by Wilson Pickett –Pickett’s version is also awesome, but he’s not from Boston. He’s from ’Bama.

Friday, March 10, 2006

Quote of the day

Do most of us want life on the same calm level as a geometrical problem? Certainly, we want our pleasures more varied with mountains and valleys of emotional joy, and marathoning furnishes just that.

7-time Boston Marathon winner Clarence DeMar

Thursday, March 09, 2006

The Boston Marathon. It's a gas.

"I saw it in my 20th mile, looming like a pyramid above Kenmore Square. It gave me strength, and I knew the race's end was near," said one marathon runner.

The CITGO sign. One of Boston’s most famous landmarks will be your friend or enemy on the Boston Marathon trail. Many runners (like the one quoted above, found on the Citgo website), will tell you that when you see the CITGO sign in Kenmore Square you’re almost home. I say don’t believe it. Run. There’s still some work to be done. And you’ll be looking at that sign for a few miles in Brookline and Boston.

Here’s some interesting info about the CITGO sign that you may not know…
*The sign was built over a Cities Service divisional office in 1940.
*Said to be the largest sign in New England, the CITGO sign is double-faced and measures 60 feet by 60 feet.
*The computer-operated sign illuminates the night from dusk till midnight.
*The sign contains more than five miles of neon tubes - 5,878 glass tubes of neon - that are lit by 250 high-voltage transformers.
*It has withstood five hurricanes, all packing winds over 80 mph.
*The sign was deemed an "Objet d' Heart" by Time magazine, photographed in a 1983 Life magazine and featured in the New York Times.
*In 1968, the critically acclaimed short film "Go, Go CITGO" captured honors at the Yale Film Festival. The flick featured the sign along with music by the Monkees and Indian sitarist Ravi Shankar.
*In 1987, an animated film was made by a local artist to immortalize Kenmore Square's "neon god." Inspired by Simon & Garfunkel's "The Sound of Silence," the three-minute film "CITGO Dance" won an award from the Artists Foundation's Massachusetts Artists Fellowship Program.
*Every time a baseball player hits a home run over the left field wall at Boston's Fenway Park, CITGO is seen by thousands of fans at the stadium and on television.

The best story I’ve ever heard about the CITGO sign involves outfielder Joe Carter, who played for the Toronto Blue Jays. Joe launched many home runs over the Green Monster in his days with the Jays. So reporters asked Joe why he had so much success at Fenway. He told them he was inspired by the big neon sign over the Wall that said "C-it-go."

Wednesday, March 08, 2006


Tonight I’ll let Race Director Dave McGillivray describe the slight course change at the Boston Marathon. (I’ll provide the graphic.)

In an effort to provide vehicular relief on the Back Bay, we have also agreed with the City of Boston’s request to have the race go under the Mass. Avenue bridge rather than across it. This will have a significant impact on relieving the North and South traffic gridlock in the Back Bay that is normally created by the race.

True, this means another slight decline and incline for the runners at the 25.4-mile point in the race, however, it is not severe and if runners know this in advance (which they will), they should be able to adjust their stride accordingly and handle this without any degree of difficulty.

Bottom line is that the second half of the race field is slower today than years ago, thus tying up city streets much longer and as such we need to respond to city requests to offer some relief. And, although it is Patriot’s Day (Monday) in Boston, it has become less and less of an off work day than in the past, thus generating much more vehicular traffic during this rush hour time of day.

Source: BAA

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

The road to victory for Gayle Barron

My favorite memory of Boston was winning the race in 1978 after having already run 4 marathons from September, 1977 (NIKE Marathon), NY City Marathon in late October, Honolulu in early December 1977 and then capping the 4th marathon with the Avon Women's International Marathon in Atlanta in March of 1978.

I entered Boston at the last minute because I was afraid that I would be too tired to run it. My legs felt great because I took off 3 weeks prior to the marathon in March and that rest helped me have the best race of my life...winning the Boston marathon.

Thanks Gayle. Visit Gayle's website

Monday, March 06, 2006

Boston Marathon tips from 1978 Women's Champion Gayle Barron

In 1978 Gayle Barron won the Boston Marathon in 2:44:52.

A Georgia Sports Hall of Fame member and voted one of Georgia's top 100 athletes of the 20th century, Gayle now coaches a running group in Atlanta called Team Spirit.

Here's a few helpful words of advice from Gayle to get you to the finish line in Boston...

1. Prior to Boston, concentrate on doing uphill and downhill strides to get the legs used to the hills at 16 to 20 miles. Also tempo runs of 4 to 5 minutes with a 2 minute rest are good to help the legs run faster on race day.

2. Take the last bus to the START to avoid sitting around for long periods of time waiting for the race to begin. When you get to the start, find a warm comfortable place to sit down and stretch the legs lightly giving them a good warm up. Prior to the race do about 10 to 12 fifty yard strides just to get loosened up.

3. DO NOT go out too fast on this course. There is quite a bit of flat to downhill before you get to Heartbreak Hill and there is a tendency for better runners to think the course is easy. Then when they get to the hills, they basically hit the wall. Be prepared for the long downhill after the Heartbreak Hill section. Pacing yourself will do wonders and you will feel stronger as you come into the heart of Boston. The crowds will definitely carry you through this race and inspire you more than any other race.

Thanks Gayle.

Check out the Team Spirit website at

Coming tomorrow: Gayle tells us how she was able to conquer Boston after a busy marathon season.


Sunday, March 05, 2006

Hooray for Hollywood

Tonight is Hollywood’s big night – the 78th annual Academy Awards. And although the following actors have never brought home an Oscar, they certainly deserve a round of applause for their performances in Boston.

2003 - Will Ferrell, Saturday Night Live, Old School (3:56:12)
2002 - Mario Lopez, Saved by the Bell, (5:41:41)
2000 - David James Elliott, JAG (4:57:23)

I thought I had an Oscar winner and a Boston Marathon finisher to tell you about today. It was rumored Cambridge-bred Matt Damon, who won an Academy Award for Good Will Hunting, was training to take on the Boston course in 2005. But he never made it to Hopkinton.

Here’s a piece from 11/23/04…

Oscar winner Matt Damon will run the Feaster Five Road Race in Andover on Thanksgiving morning as a tune-up for the Boston Marathon, the actor's brother, Kyle, told the Lawrence Eagle Tribune. Damon quit smoking, his brother said, and with a little fraternal coaxing, signed up to participate in the 5-mile race. It's not that far-fetched for Damon to run the Boston Marathon, according to Kyle, who's done it himself. "I've been bugging Matt for years to get into it," he said. "He finally quit smoking, and we're running [it] together next April. I've run it. My father [Kent] has run it. Now Matt's up."

Who knows what happened, but Damon’s intent to run Boston seems genuine. Run Matt!

COMING TOMORROW - Boston Marathon tips from 1978 Women's champion Gayle Barron.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Boston Marathon memories from '83 champion Greg Meyer

"My favorite story is from the early years...Tarzan Brown, getting tired and hot, just stopping in Natick and jumping in the lake. For some reason it just makes me laugh thinking about that. Image one of the favorites today...on TV, just jumping over the guard rail and diving into the lake."

"My favorite memory for me is making the old turn onto Ring Road toward the finish. For some reason making the turn stands out more to me than breaking the tape."

Boston. Run It!

Friday, March 03, 2006


Today I'll direct you to the pros, the Boston Globe, for a Boston Marathon story.

It's the story of a brave, determined soul that should inspire you to get off the couch, add on an extra mile, or run up a hill just a little bit faster.

This is the story of Dan Peterson, a 24-time Boston Marathon finisher. Keep him in your thoughts on the road this weekend. And take a moment to think about the miles ahead--and behind--of you.

Click here for the story.

Coming tomorrow: 1983 champion Greg Meyer shares his favorite marathon story, plus find out what stands out in his mind about his Boston victory.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Boston Marathon tips from 1983 champion Greg Meyer

In 1978, Greg Meyer moved to the Boston area from Grand Rapids, Michigan and went to work for Bill Rodgers in his Cleveland Circle running store.

Five years later Meyer was crowned champion of the 87th Boston Marathon, finishing in a time of 2:09:00. Greg Meyer is the last American male to win the Boston Marathon.

I contacted Greg to get some tips on running Boston. Here’s what he had to say…

1. Do your training! Specifically the hill training...downhill running is key to surviving Boston.

2. Be conservative in your effort the first 16 miles. It's downhill, you'll be running fast, don't get caught up in the excitement and downhill speed and have it ruin the last ten miles.

3. Don't attack the uphills or them steady, and if you feel good, attack the flat areas.

here to read about Greg Meyer’s 1983 Boston Marathon victory.


Wednesday, March 01, 2006

All Day I Dream About...

In 2005 Adidas celebrated its 17th year as the Official Footwear and Apparel Outfitter for the Boston Marathon. And last year they took their sponsorship one step further by becoming the official sponsor of the runner’s bib numbers.

Adidas keeps runners comfortable and looking good on the Boston Marathon course, but they also provide exclusive Boston Marathon jackets to over 7,000 B.A.A. volunteers and 1,100 members of the media.

FYI – One of the rumors that circulates the planet (and the internet) is that ADIDAS stands for All Day I Dream About Sports or All Day I Dream About Soccer, or All Day I Dream About Sex. Not so.

The company was founded in 1925 by a German gentleman. His name was Adolph (Adi) Dassler.

It seems like the Dassler family knew a thing or two about footwear. Adi’s brother, Rudolph, founded Puma in 1948.

COMING TOMORROW – Boston Marathon tips from 1983 Men’s Champion Greg Meyer. Don’t miss it!