As I plan out my strategy for 2014, I learned something very important last night. After running 8 marathons over the past two years, I now consider myself experienced enough to “go for Boston”. I have learned a lot on the marathon courses I’ve been on, and paid careful attention to training. I have not qualified for the Boston Marathon yet, but now feel comfortable that I will get there. The elite event for marathon runners will have to make room for me. I have a plan, and I will be there.
Obviously the qualifying and field is already full for the 2014 event. I am shooting for the race in 2015. I have chosen several flat marathons to try my luck. I went onto the Boston Marathon qualifying page on their website last night and learned something very interesting and exciting. You see, I am 43 years old currently, and my PR is 3:32. I thought in order to qualify for 2015, I would have to cut 12 minutes off my PR in my upcoming marathons, and have inserted speed work into my training to get me closer. But, here is what I learned last night. I have to qualify with the time for the Age Group that I will be in at the time of the 2015 race. This is good news! I will be turning 45 just one week before the 2015 race on April 20th. Yes, that means that I only have to drop 7 minutes off my PR. Really that is huge in the world of marathon running. My pace would have to be 7:49/mile. That is doable, and my new standard to shoot for this year.
Of course, just meeting the qualifying standard doesn’t mean that I would get in to the race, so I will continue to push my limits on pacing. This is just thrilling news to me, as I would just be amazed to qualify, and be among the elite field at this prestigious event.
My schedule for going for Boston is as follows:
In 26 days, I will attempting to qualify at the Charleston Marathon.
In 47 days, the journey will continue in Hilton Head at this inaugural marathon.
For the winter and spring racing season, I have three more marathons planned. All 5 I have planned for next year for the first part of the year, will be new races for me. New courses, but flatter courses that the ones I ran this year. I will certainly run some of my previous marathons again, but my focus for 2014 will be to qualify for Boston, so I need to be smart in picking courses that are a little more conducive to a quicker run.
I am so excited to get running and try to get to Boston.
- Charleston Marathon Quest (plaviska1970.wordpress.com)