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Back to Boston—and Kathrine Switzer Books Winners

Kathrine Switzer and Michelle San Antonio: epitome of Fearless and Strong.
Kathrine Switzer and Michelle San Antonio, who is returning after running 2013: the epitome of 261 Fearless and Strong.

Back in the day, I never wanted to run the Boston Marathon.

In 2012, Sarah covered 26.2 in Boston crazy heat, and had one of the best days of her life.

In 2013, we were all undone by the bombings—and the attack we felt so personally on our sport.

And now?

Truthfully, it's hard to say something that hasn't been said about the race that will be run today.

We'll be cheering my guts out for hometown fave Shalene Flanagan; watch this 60 Minutes interview if you haven't seen it yet.

We''ll also be cheering my guts out for all the mother runners—Michelle, Cleary, Laurie, Stephanie, Lois, Jenny, among others—taking on the marathon, and wishing the live coverage didn't end with the elite runners.

We'll be cheering my guts out for the people injured in the blast who are running this year.

We'll be holding in my heart the 3 people who lost their lives, and the 200+ who were injured last year.

Most of all, we'll be wishing I were lined up on a spot on the course, a place where we could yell everybody's name and soak up the Boston Strong in person. Where we could stand and cheer and cheer and smile and encourage and clap and high-five and, hours and hours later, feel as exhausted, exhilirated, and emboldened as if we  had run the course myself.

The day will pass, hopefully without any incident, and hopefully with a sense of closure to so many people who have returned to Boston to practice resilience, embrace community, run with open hearts.

And we wish that closure would bring slam that door, thrust opened a year ago by so much terror and pain, shut forever.

Unfortunately, that door always remain ajar, if only slightly. Because that's the way this world spins. Even if we're not personally touched regularly with an act of terror—and thank Goodness we're not—we're regularly touched by death, cancer, friends in need, divorce, unemployment, unfairness, anything that makes you feel undone and unsure of what to do.

After today—and every day, no matter what it brings—we'll have what we always have: running. Thank Goodness for that.

Mother runner Deborah says it perfectly: "A year ago tomorrow I was at the finish line with my then 9 yo old daughter...I am not going back to Boston tomorrow, and I am very conflicted about it. Today I ran my 8 miles solo, thinking about the day, what could have happened and what the last year has brought me. I feel a mix of emotions today and I know tomorrow will be equally emotional. I am grateful that I have been given the opportunity to keep running. And I will be thinking of everyone who was touched, as I have been, by last year's bombing. And so we keep running!"
Mother runner Deborah says it perfectly: "A year ago tomorrow I was at the finish line with my then 9 yo old daughter...I am not going back to Boston tomorrow, and I am very conflicted about it. Today I ran my 8 miles solo, thinking about the day, what could have happened and what the last year has brought me. I feel a mix of emotions today and I know tomorrow will be equally emotional. I am grateful that I have been given the opportunity to keep running. And I will be thinking of everyone who was touched, as I have been, by last year's bombing. And so we keep running!"

We'll always have running and its healing rhythm that brings mental clarity and compassion. Its muscular demands that quiet the jitters and induce a pleasant exhasution, whether you go 2 miles or 20. Its magical powers that grow confidence, strength, optimism, fearlessness: Qualities that richochet through all areas of your life. Its ability to connect us all—tortoises, cheetahs, elephants, hares—and restore our faith in humanity.

Run strong, friends, no matter where your miles take you today.

The Boston Marathon starts at 9:30 ET, and you can watch live streaming here

A brush with greatness: two books, plus signed book plate, by Kathrine Switzer. (The other book in prize package is digital.)
A brush with greatness: two books, plus signed book plate, by Kathrine Switzer. (The other book in prize package is digital.)

The winners from our Kathrine Switzer book giveaway, and their best advice/tips:

Shay from Whine Less, Breathe More: I GET to do this!

Paula Smith: I always remember to thank my non-running husband for his constant support and encouragement. He may not completely understand why I do it, but he understands how important running is to me.

Congrats, ladies! You've got some fearless reading ahead! Email us at runmother [at] gmail [dot] com with your address and we'll get the books out.

6 responses to “Back to Boston—and Kathrine Switzer Books Winners

  1. Hey very cool blog site! Guy. Exceptional. Awesome. I will book mark your website in addition to make rss feeds in addition? I’m contented to find numerous techniques listed here in the post, we require exercise added strategies on this consideration, thank you for giving.

  2. Thanks Dimity! I think we were all there in spirit yesterday! 🙂
    Watching Shalane during the live feed was exhilarating! She certainly set the pace for the Women’s race and made every American Woman Runner proud! Then watching Meb win for the men evoked real tears of joy!
    Thanks for keeping the spirit and love for running alive through AMR!

  3. Although I have no personal connection with Boston or the bombings, reading this made me tear up because I do have a personal connection with running and the strong that goes along with it.
    Well written!

  4. Awesome blog. I was yelling at my computer screen while watching the feed. Thank you for the link to Shalane’s interview, although she didn’t win, she had an amazing time and broke the record for any US female. So very proud of all the athletes.

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