The Boston Marathon is a sporting event like none other. From the hardy back of the packers, to the primed up pros, the Boston Marathon remains a symbol of excellence for runners of all skill levels. With the big day in Bean Town on Monday, we are bringing you a few tricks of the trade from 6-time Boston qualifier and coach Amy Anderson. Here are her top three tips:
- Be a worrywart: Race day weather has a significant impact on finishing times. While the weatherman is calling for near perfect race day conditions (high of 54 and a low of 45), you can never be too sure of what mother nature will bring to the party. After 20 marathons and counting, Amy recommends embracing your inner weather worrywart. “Obsessing over the weather is part of your moral obligation as a runner, so go ahead and worry about the weather.” Your stress may not change the weather conditions but it will provide you with something to focus the flood of pre-race anxieties on.
- Make it to BC (Boston College): The marathon course starts 26.2 miles west of downtown Boston and meanders its way through eight spirited communities. With a net drop of 130 feet over the first five miles and crazed fans lining the course, there is a huge tendency to get out of the gates way too fast. A fast start will over stress your muscular system making the later stages of the race harder than they should be. Amy suggests using Boston College as a queue to better pace your effort. “Once you make it past Newton and Heart Break Hill, Boston College is on your right, be thankful because the worst is behind you!”
- Respect your nerves: Miles upon miles, months of hard work and unrelenting sacrifice have all combined to get you on the line at the famed Boston Marathon – so, congrats! The dream you have painted is just as you imagined, except for one thing, there is a tornado of nerves spinning in your belly. Race day jitters can be unsettling to say the least. Amy likes to think of race day anxiety differently; “Nervousness is a healthy sign of respect for what you are about to do,” says Amy. That’s not to say you should let the jitters take you down, but rather open your self to the rush of emotions you are feeling and channel those into the 26.2 miles that lay ahead.
To all of the runners prepping for the Boston Marathon – good luck!