Eventually we found our place in line at the start. It was kinda funny though. Thanks to my qualifying time of 2:54, my bib number was 1966 – which meant I was actually in both the first wave and the first corral. But because I had no plans/desire to run a 6:30ish pace for Boston, I decided to instead enter in the fourth corral with my friend Rob. Which led to a funny interaction with a little old lady volunteer who said “Oh honey, you can go on waaaaay up there” (gesturing to the front of the pack). It was funny because everyone around us heard it and all looked. Thanks…but no thanks.
Given the downhill nature of the first few miles, we knew it was going to be fast – which was fine. We ran in a relatively comfy upper zone-2 heart rate, which ended up being a relatively quick 6:30/mile pace (once you remove the multiple bathroom breaks we took – hydrating for a 10 a.m. race is hard…). But that wasn’t the interesting thing. The real kicker was how fast we were going as a group. Usually in mass-running scenarios like this, the group at large is moving slowly. But in the picture below – EVERYONE is moving at a 6:30/mile pace. And for miles on end. It was just really really cool.
[Ray Maker grew up in Seattle, Washington and ski raced pretty competitively as a kid. Training for skiing somehow led to running cross-country his freshman year of high school. However, after one season, he decided running was a miserable way to spend his time, and proceeded to not run for another ten years or so.
During those ten years Ray used his spare time to get pretty into technology and travel. He eventually ended up graduating high school straight into the world of technology, consulting for large organizations (and travelling up to 52 weeks a year). Today, he still designs computer networks and systems…and still travels a lot.
The full story of his re-entry into running and his well self-photographed 2009 Boston Marathon can be found on his blog DC Rainmaker.]