The Boston Qualifier Questionnaire – Ginny

Huge congrats to Ginny who qualified for the first time at the age of 60! You’re an inspiration!

Name

Ginny

Sex:

Female

Age (at the time of first BQ):

60       

Height:

5’6”

Weight (at the time of first BQ):

124

At which marathon did you get your first BQ?

B&A Trail Marathon

Tell us a little about the race.

This was my third marathon. In my first, Gettysburg, I ran a pace that would have been enough to BQ if I had been one year older, so I had great hopes for future races. My second marathon a year later was hot, and I didn’t adjust enough for conditions, so I wasn’t able to equal the time of my first race. I was disappointed, but not discouraged. This third race seemed like a good possibility for getting my BQ, since it is relatively flat and my training went well so although I was two years older, I thought I should be able to equal my previous PR.

The B&A is a paved railtrail, wide enough for 4-6 runners to run side by side. The race is small, with about 250 registered for the marathon and 600 for the half marathon. Both races start together, so the first half of the race is somewhat crowded, though still comfortable, but after mile 13, the marathoners are on their own, aside from locals out walking dogs or riding their bikes. I was told that the B&A is a flat race, but there was about 570′ elev. gain, with gently rolling hills, not steep ones. On race day, I was feeling good and the weather was perfect – 47 and cloudy – so I ended up running at a slightly faster pace than I had planned. I was able to hold it for the first 19 miles, then lost steam and struggled, especially in miles 22 and 23. Then I got my second wind and was able to finish fairly well. My overall pace was only a little below my goal and was good enough to get my BQ.

How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ?

5 years

Did you run in college or high school?

No

What was your approximate lifetime mileage at the time of your first BQ?

7000 running miles

How many miles did you run in the year before your first BQ?

1400

Approximately how many races did you run in that year?

2 – one marathon, one disastrous HM thanks to an issue with anemia

Did you follow a canned program? If so, which one? If not, can you give us an idea of what your training philosophy was?

Yes, Hal Higdon Intermediate 2.

Did you run with a running club or utilize a coach?

No

Did cross training play a role in your training? If so, how?

I walk daily. Cross-training days were usually either hikes or stationary bike and yoga. I was a hiker and backpacker for 30 years, so although I was never fast, I do have strong legs.

Did speed work play a role or specific workouts play a role in your training? If so, how?

I do very little speed work. I injured a hamstring doing badly paced speedwork a couple of years ago. I could run on it, but any faster running hurt so I have mostly avoided pushing myself for anything but strides or fartleks.

Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ?

As an older runner, my qualifying time is a lot slower than that of most of your responders. Still, I’m proud that I did qualify with a decent cushion (8 minutes.) I am really looking forward to running Boston next year.

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About seanv2

Scholar, gentleman, jock. I run the website Milo and the Calf. There you will find the Boston Qualifier Questionnaire where runners share their stories of qualifying for the Boston Marathon. You'll also find my thoughts on endurance sports, ancient history, Judaism, and hundreds of book reviews.
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