[The first part of this race report is going to sound unusually positive given what you already know about the bombings, but I feel it's important to capture the emotions at the time they happened. My apologies if you consider it inappropriate.]
|(Corral #1 gets fidgety)|
|(Excited and ready to go!)|
|(And we're off!)|
|(The weather was ideal!)|
|(Running legend Joan Benoit Samuelson on her way to a age group record 2:50 finish)|
|(Crowds were outstanding, per usual)|
I hit the halfway in 1:20:20 perfectly, and was still feeling good enough for a negative split. The first half of Boston is easier than the second, so some reserves would be needed to keep the pace. Loren started clicking off 5:55 min/miles, so I had to let him go (he went 2:40:04!), and instead fed off the amazing crowds that came out in droves. Nothing like a few high fives to get your spirits up!
|(Peter Gurney gets some love from his spontaneous crew of supporters)|
|(2013 Boston Marathon winners Rita Jeptoo and Lelisa Desisa)|
|(Massage volunteer and 10-time finisher Donna Cormier assists the medical team in helping an elated Liang Wu from Austin, TX, who didn't let a pesky blister stop him from setting a new PR)|
|(World class service from Boston massage volunteers)|
|(The first explosion was just 100 yards from the finish)|
I looked at my cell phone which said I had 53 texts, 25 Facebook messages, 30 tweets, and 18 phone calls. It was family, friends...it was you guys. Yes, I was okay. Yes, I had been at the finish ~30 minutes before, but my need for beer may have saved my life. In fact, let's have a few more beers. I opened up a tab and invited everyone to raise a glass to the families of the dead and injured, and to celebrate being alive. But in classic Boston form, the staff of the Beantown Pub just kept bringing free drinks.
|(Runners were stopped along the course soon after the blasts)|