Philadelphia Runs for Boston

City HallThe bombings at the Boston Marathon may have disrupted one race and caused the loss of life and hundreds of injuries in just one city, but in reality, it affected the rest of the country.  Fellow runners, in particular, have felt a kinship to the marathoners because they know about the hard work and dedication it takes to train for races as well as the importance of support from our friends and relatives who watch our races.  And what better way for fellow runners across the nation to show solidarity and pay  tribute to those in Boston than taking part in a group run.

Thanks to the coordination of Ryan Callahan of Philadelphia Runner, one of the city’s premier running stores, Philly had a citywide group run in support of Boston.  We were far from the only city to take part, as many cities showed their support, but our participation was pretty impressive.  What started during Tuesday afternoon planning as just a small scale gathering of three or four running groups eventually grew to thirty running  clubs, stores and organizations taking part.  Groups were to run from specific meet-up spots to City Hall before running to Independence Mall.  South Philadelphia’s meet up spot had 75-80 runners alone, and City Hall’s courtyard hosted a gathering of about 3,000 runners.

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Experiencing a Run in Boston

Boston CommonJust about everywhere I travel for work, I try to get out for a run.  There’s no better way to get a good feel for a city than by venturing out, on foot, on its streets.

In January 2011, while visiting for business, I finally had the opportunity to run in Boston.  Though it was extremely frigid, with snow and ice covering the Charles River running trail, it was quite a thrill to run in the city home to the world’s most legendary marathon.

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Boston Marathon Qualification: Be Close to Elite or Forget It

The Boston Marathon is the world’s oldest annual marathon, dating all the way back to 1897.  It’s also arguably the most prestigious, with its requirement of qualifying times for any non-charity runner or non-overseas travel partner entrant to enter the race.

Even qualifying for the race is a major accomplishment for any runner.  Now, it’s about to become even harder or downright impossible for the non-elite runner.  The Boston Athletic Association announced major changes to the entrance process for the 2012 Boston Marathon race and qualification times for the 2013 race and beyond.  While entrance was previously first come, first serve, the B.A.A. is now allowing the fastest qualifiers to register first.  Those who beat the qualifying standard by at least 20 minutes get the first crack, followed a couple of days later by those who beat it by at least 10 minutes, and then a few days later by those who beat it by at least 5 minutes.  Finally, seven days after registration started, everyone else who has a qualifying time can attempt to register.  Considering how this year’s race sold out in about eight hours last year, good luck with trying to get  a spot during open registration.

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