Won’t Be Stopped

It’s been a horrid and crazy few days for the running and endurance community. Like many, I wasn’t sure if I really wanted to put these words up. Like many more, I feel that putting my words out will help me and maybe help others.

We have seen the endurance community come together over the past few days. Many stating they’ll go to Boston, or be back to Boston, in the future. Event organizers agree: the London Marathon will continue as originally scheduled on Sunday. To let fear grab hold and prevent us from doing what we love would be letting them win. And we’re nothing if not stubborn, us runners.

Monday, after receiving updates that all my friends in Boston were okay I stepped away from the news and the internet so I could process. This is what I wrote at that time, pouring my thoughts and feelings onto paper.

I am saddened, dismayed, and stunned. But more than anything I am pissed off. That an event which sits at the epicenter of the running community would be targeted in such a way makes me so very angry.

Many non-runners don’t understand the preparation and training it takes to complete a marathon. Then multiply that many times to get the preparation for Boston. You don’t just sign up. You have to qualify for Boston. It is a plan and process that happens over many months, even years for some. You have to run a race and meet a hard, but not impossible, standard just to consider Boston. Then you train and prepare again.

Boston is the Holy Grail of the running world. It’s the event many “regular” runners spend their running lives attempting to reach. More than 17,000 had already crossed the finish line, but more than 5,000 others didn’t get to. This amazing achievement by running standards is now incomplete for them. And it pisses me off.

But we are strong as a community. Maybe a little crazy too because this won’t stop us. We’ll still work, spectate, volunteer, and run races. We’ll still set our hearts and minds on Boston; to aim for that coveted goal. We, as runners, are strong. We make each other strong and we won’t be stopped.

I may only speak for myself, but I think other runners will share my sentiment. This won’t stop me. I will still spectate and volunteer. And I will still run. My races won’t change; neither will my goals. Because someday I’ll run the Boston Marathon. When I do, I’ll think of this day and know I wasn’t stopped. Surrounded by thousands of other runners, you’ll see that they weren’t stopped either.

My resolve has not wavered, but strengthened, and it will carry me on swift feet towards my goals.

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