The Boston Qualifier Questionnaire 00 Charlotte L

Name: Charlotte L

Sex: Female

Age (at the time of first BQ): 32

Height (at the time of first BQ): 5’4″  

Weight (at the time of first BQ): 119lb

At which marathon did you get your first BQ? Reykjavik 2019

Tell us a little about the race. It went really smoothly! It was a cool and grey day, good weather for running. I followed a 1:40 half marathon pace group for the first half, then zoned out on my own until mile 21, then focused on catching people in front of me until the end. The last mile or so I tried to give it everything I’d got and it was painful to try to speed up, but I was proud I ran negative splits. This was my first full marathon.

How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ? 19 months

Did you run in college or high school? No

What was your approximate lifetime mileage at the time of your first BQ? 1600mi

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

Approximately how many races did you run in that year? Calendar year: 7, in a full year before: 11

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, Pfitzinger 12/55. 12-week plan starting at 35mi/week and building to 55mi/week. Emphasizes cumulative fatigue.

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

Did cross training play a role in your training? If so, how? No

Did speed work play a role in your training? If so, how? Yes, the plan includes lactate threshold and VO2 max workouts.

Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ? Be consistent, and don’t be scared of high mileage.

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Boston Qualifier Questionnaire — Cris Gutierrez

Name: Cris Gutierrez

Sex: Male

Age (at the time of first BQ): 25

Height (at the time of first BQ): 5’11  

Weight (at the time of first BQ): 130

At which marathon did you get your first BQ? Erie Marathon

Tell us a little about the race. I had run competitively in college up until my last season of graduate school in 2016. I had moved to a new city and struggled to get back to running consistently aside from local pub runs. I swore I would never run a marathon; years of people asking me when I would run one had me turned off at the idea of it. Eventually some people at run club had convinced me to do it and with the help of a night of drinking and a cheap entry fee I signed up for Erie. I had no intention of running Boston. I figured I would get a qualifier but I would just run Erie to say I could qualify and that’s it.

Going into Erie I had peaked out at 80 miles a week with a 20 mile long run with the last 10 at 6:00’s. Then I got hurt a couple weeks into it and hoped that I could just muscle through it. Went out conservatively for 10 at 6:20 pace and cranked the pace down. Ended up with about a 4 minute negative split and ran 2:41:05, good for 8th. Could barely walk afterward and figured this would be the last time I did it. A couple days later signups for Boston opened up and I made the decision to sign up.

The training journey to Boston changed my perspective toward the distance and made me a better runner. I trained much harder going into this buildup and while I did get hurt coming into Boston I still managed a big PR, 2:34:46 good for top Ohio finisher in 2019. Boston broke me at 22 but I finished the race realizing that I had some potential at the distance and decided to pursue marathoning. I ran my 3rd marathon in October to PR again with a 2:30:25. I’m heading back to Boston this spring for some redemption. I’m working on staying healthy and trying to break deep under 2:30. Regardless if this ends up being my last Boston for the foreseeable future (I want to run the other majors) I credit Boston for reigniting my love of running and inspiring me to chase after a crazy goal to make a certain race in 2024.

How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ? 12 Years

Did you run in college or high school? Yes

What was your approximate lifetime mileage at the time of your first BQ? 20,000

How many miles did you run in the year before your first BQ? 876

Approximately how many races did you run in that year? 1

Did you follow a canned program? If so, which one? If not, can you give us an idea of what your training philosophy was? no

Did you run with a running club or utilize a coach? Training philosophy was just to get to peak at 80 miles a week and complete a 20 miler with the last 10 at Goal Marathon Pace

Did cross training play a role in your training? If so, how? No

Did speed work play a role in your training? If so, how? I cross trained when I got hurt. That’s basically it. Stationary bike.

Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ? No.

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The Boston Qualifier Questionnaire — Chris H

Name: Chris H

Sex: Male

Age (at the time of first BQ): 51 years, 11 months

Height (at the time of first BQ):  5′ 10″

Weight (at the time of first BQ): 165

At which marathon did you get your first BQ? I have BQ’d three times, 2015, 2016 and 2019, all at the BoA Chicago Marathon. Only my 2016 time was fast enough to make the BQ cutoff.

Tell us a little about the race. Pretty good day for a race, temps were good, and Chicago is always pretty fast. I had qualified to be B corral, so I was up front and ahead of most slower runners. I needed a 3:30 and planned for a sub-3:25 to give me the 5 minute qualifying cushion that everyone shoots for. I basically intended to run a little under 8 min miles and ended with an 7:49 average pace. I ran a 3:25:08.

How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ? I started keeping track of my miles in 1989, so 26 years or so.

Did you run in college or high school? No

What was your approximate lifetime mileage at the time of your first BQ? 20,043 (so glad I have kept track of my miles over the years.)

How many miles did you run in the year before your first BQ? Total miles in 2015 was 2112.

Approximately how many races did you run in that year? Lots of 5K’s and short tri’s, but only one half marathon and one full.

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, For marathons I use a Nike Advanced plan that was promoted by the Chicago Marathon, and for Ironman I use Be Iron Fit.

Did you run with a running club or utilize a coach? No

Did cross training play a role in your training? If so, how? Absolutely! I firmly believe that the training I do for Ironman triathlons pushed me into the zone of being able to qualify. I believe that was the most beneficial aspect of my BQ.

Did speed work play a role in your training? If so, how? Yes, the typical fartleks and intervals at various distances were employed.

Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ? It boils down to four factors for me to finally qualify for Boston. First, I had to stop winging it and follow a plan. This brought down my time significantly, but still left me with a good 10 minute deficit to make up to qualify.

Secondly, I started a running streak (at least a mile a day on 1/1/15.) This improved my fitness and running strength. I kept at that streak for 4 years and ended it the day after running the 2018 Boston Marathon.

Third, and most importantly, I became a triathlete and started doing Ironman training and races. This taught me so much about building to a goal, as well as proper nutrition during the race, an aspect that I had previously given very little attention to. In 2016, I also did Ironman Lake Placid in July and then started my training for Chicago after a brief recovery.

And lastly, I was patient and aged to the point where my abilities were more in line with the qualifying standards. My son qualified at 24 years of age, there was no way I could have done that.

Thanks for allowing me to share my experience.

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Boston Qualifier Questionnaire –Andrew

Name: Andrew

Sex: Male

Age (at the time of first BQ): 24

Height (at the time of first BQ):  6’0

Weight (at the time of first BQ): 155-160

At which marathon did you get your first BQ? Marine Corps Marathon

Tell us a little about the race. I was incredibly excited to run my first marathon, particularly so with the incredible atmosphere and support that comes from one of our nation’s most historic marathons in our nation’s capital. I was equally nervous, despite what I considered being well prepared, as I certainly had a healthy respect (and some fear) for the distance.

Because I was in unchartered territory with MCM being my first full, my time goal ranged significantly from anywhere from 2:45-under 3:00. Workouts indicated I was capable of the former, but seeing and hearing horror stories about the final 10k and how the wheels can come off in a very real way left me cautious and not overly ambitious.

I remember feeling incredible for the first half and having to force myself to not run faster than my body was trying to get me to go at the time, hitting the half in am what felt like a very relaxed 1:22 low. I continued to feel good through about 16-17, when it got noticeably more challenging to keep 6:15s going. I maintained pace through 20 or so when I started to fade slightly. The last 10k is essentially an out and back, with the out moving away from the city and away from spectators and support. The crowd and energy throughout was amazing, but I definitely felt its absence on the lonely stretch from miles 20-23. By that point, I was in significant pain, different than all of the track and XC races I had experienced. The last mile, I would’ve sworn I was running 9 minute pace or worse, which I later found out was about 7:25 or 7:30. My body and mind were gone at that point and I was just trying to get to the finish line so I could stop! I ended up in 2:49:37 for about a 5 minute positive split.

My good friend was also running his first and anticipated finishing around 4:00. I said depending on how I felt, I would try to run in the last mile or so with him. I look back on that hopeful promise and laugh, realizing how naive I was about what the effort would take out of me.

Overall, it was an amazing first marathon experience!

How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ? 12-16 years depending on what counts as training

Did you run in college or high school? Yes

What was your approximate lifetime mileage at the time of your first BQ? really hard to even guess… 12-15,000 miles?

How many miles did you run in the year before your first BQ? I’m guessing I was around 50-60 miles per week for the buildup on average, although I don’t have my specific logs from that time.

Approximately how many races did you run in that year? 3 or 4 including the marathon?

Did you follow a canned program? If so, which one? If not, can you give us an idea of what your training philosophy was? No, Get consistent miles in and focus on solid long runs. Most long runs became progression/tempo runs which got me physically and mentally tough and ready to hurt.

Did you run with a running club or utilize a coach? No

Did cross training play a role in your training? If so, how? Hardly at all.

Did speed work play a role in your training? If so, how? I did a few Yasso 800 workouts and tempo runs. Coaching HS at the time, I did most of what the kids did with some modifications, so there was definitely hill work and other quicker workouts I am having trouble recalling at the moment!

Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ? Be realistic in you time goals, especially for the first one. Put in the miles, respect the distance and practice fueling consistently before hand. You will lose more calories and water than you realize. Shoot for a general time goal but don’t let that overshadow your accomplishment of finishing a very difficult feat. Enjoy the experience and give yourself adequate time to recover with some very easy active recovery before jumping back into things.

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The Boston Qualifier Questionnaire — Matt

Name: Matt

Sex: Male

Age (at the time of first BQ): 60

Height (at the time of first BQ): 6′ 0″

Weight (at the time of first BQ): 145

At which marathon did you get your first BQ? Toronto Waterfront

Tell us a little about the race. Was never really in doubt. Slowed down midway so as to not mess it up.

How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ? 2 years (after an extremely long layoff)

Did you run in college or high school? No

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

How many miles did you run in the year before your first BQ? 2200

Approximately how many races did you run in that year? 2

Did you follow a canned program? If so, which one? If not, can you give us an idea of what your training philosophy was? No, Day to day decisions based on feel stressing more miles.

Did you run with a running club or utilize a coach? No

Did cross training play a role in your training? If so, how? No

Did speed work play a role in your training? If so, how? No

Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ? Set a long term goal and grind out weekly miles.

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Your Occasional Stoic — Do Not Waste What Remains of Life On What Others Think of You

 

 

Do not waste what remains of life on what others think of you, when it makes not for the common good. You are surely neglecting other work if you busy yourself with what others are doing and why, with what they are saying, thinking, or scheming.

All such things do but divert you from the steadfast guardianship of your own soul. It behooves you, then, in every train of thought to shun all that is aimless or useless, and, above all, everything officious or malignant. Accustom yourself so, and only so, to think, that, if any one were suddenly to ask you, “Of what are you thinking-now?” you could answer frankly and at once, “Of so and so.” Then it will plainly appear that you are all simplicity and kindliness, as befits a social being who takes little thought for enjoyment or any phantom pleasure; who spurns contentiousness, envy, or suspicion; or any passion the harboring of which one would blush to own. For such a man, who has finally determined to be henceforth among the best, is, as it were, a priest and minister of the Gods, using the spirit within him, which preserves a man un-spotted from pleasure, un-wounded by any pain, inaccessible to all insult, innocent of all evil; a champion in the noblest of all contests—the contest for victory over every passion. He is penetrated with justice; he welcomes with all his heart whatever befalls, or is appointed by Providence. He troubles not often, or ever without pressing public need, to consider what another may say, or do, or design. Solely intent upon his own conduct, ever mindful of his own concurrent part in the destiny of the Universe, he orders his conduct well, persuaded that his part is good. For the lot appointed to every man is part of the law of all things as well as a law for him. He forgets not that all rational beings are akin, and that the love of all mankind is part of the nature of man; also that we must not think as all men think, but only as those who live a life accordant with nature. As for those who live otherwise, he remembers always how they act at home and abroad, by night and by day, and how and with whom they are found in company. And so he cannot esteem the praise of such, for they enjoy not their own approbation.

Meditations 3:4

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Do not trouble yourself with what others think of you. A simple admonition, but as we’ve said before, much harder to implement, and perhaps that is why it occurs so often in the meditations. Marcus isn’t just reminding us to stay focused on that which we can change – our actions – he is also reminding himself. Stay true to your life’s work. Ignore the haters.

Your Occasional Stoic — The Soul Is Intelligence and Deity, the Body Dust and Corruption

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Hippocrates, who had healed many diseases, himself fell sick, and died.

 

The Chaldeans foretold the fatal hours of multitudes, and afterwards fate carried themselves away.

Alexander, Pompey, and Gaius Caesar, who so often razed whole cities, and cut off in battle so many myriads of horse and foot, at last departed from this life themselves.

Heraclitus, after his many speculations on the conflagration of the world, died, swollen with water and plastered with cow-dung.

Vermin destroyed Democritus; Socrates was killed by vermin of another sort.

What of all this? You have gone aboard, made your voyage, come to harbor. Disembark: if into another life, there will God be also; if into nothingness, at least you will have done with bearing pain and pleasure, and with your slavery to this vessel so much meaner than its slave. For the soul is intelligence and deity, the body dust and corruption.

 

Mediations 3:3

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Hippocrates, the father of western medicine. The Chaldeans, an ancient people, disappeared into assimilation. Alexander the Great, Pompey, and Gaius Caesar, all three among the greatest generals of the ancient world. Heraclitus, among the first and most compelling of the Greek philosophers. Socrates, perhaps the greatest. All of them dead. Remember if it comes for men of this stature, it is coming for you as well. What will you say when that day comes? Will you have lead a good life?

Boston Qualifier Questionnaire — George

Name: George

Sex: Male

Age (at the time of first BQ): 23

Height (at the time of first BQ): 5’10”

Weight (at the time of first BQ): 165

At which marathon did you get your first BQ? Rock n’ Roll Raleigh (2017)

Tell us a little about the race. It was my marathon debut – was getting back into running after taking a short break. I was running in college before but was very out of shape and had no idea what it would be like to race beyond 10 miles. So basically your usual first marathon story – first half was 77, hit 20 miles in 2 hours, and finished in 2:45 aka blew up. In retrospect the course was very hilly too.

How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ? 8 years

Did you run in college or high school? Yes

What was your approximate lifetime mileage at the time of your first BQ? 20,000?

How many miles did you run in the year before your first BQ? At most 1500

Approximately how many races did you run in that year? 1

Did you follow a canned program? If so, which one? If not, can you give us an idea of what your training philosophy was? no

Did you run with a running club or utilize a coach? No

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

Did speed work play a role in your training? If so, how? No? But then again I didn’t do long workouts – the volume hovered around 60 and the toughest workout was 4 x 1 mile, which was probably at faster than 5k pace if I’m being honest

Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ? All these answers just show my stupidity/arrogance in leading up to my first marathon, and I wouldn’t advise following the training I just outlined. Build the volume, get an accountability partner/coach, and do longer/slower workouts

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Parsha Project — Bereshit

The Parsha In 250 Words (Or So)

We begin with God creating the world in six days by (1) separating darkness and light, (2) forming the heavens, (3) setting the boundaries between the earth and the sea and creating plants and trees, (4) fixing the position of the sun moon and stars and thereby allowing for the creation of days and years,  (5) creating fish, birds and reptiles, and then on sixth day, creating animals from the land and, finally, man.

On the seventh day, God rested.

God creates man by bringing him forth from the dust. This is Adam. Then, from Adam’s rib, God creates for him a partner, Eve. Adam and Eve dwell in the garden of Eden and are told not to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. However, a serpent convinces Eve to eat from the tree and she shares the fruit with Adam. Consequently, the serpent is condemned to crawl, Adam and Eve are condemned to die, and Eve, to suffer during child birth.

Adam and Eve are expelled from the Garden. After, Eve gives birth to two sons, Cain and Abel. Cain quarrels with Abel, kills him, and is exiled. A third son is also born, Seth, whose descendant we learn, after much genealogical detail, is Noah, the only righteous man in the world.

Initial Thoughts 

As we’ll see throughout Bereshit, there’s a lot of action here.  Most people know very few of the stories from the Torah, and here, in the opening lines, are three of the most famous — the creation of the world, Adam and Eve in the Garden, and Cain murdering Abel.

After so much action, we transition to a genealogical retelling of the descendants of Adam and Eve. We’ll see that this is a device often used to transition the action, here from Adam and Eve to Noah, generations later.

Questions For Later Discussion

Why are Adam and Eve barred from eating from the tree? And why does the serpent try to get them to?

What was a serpent before it was cursed to crawl on its belly?

How did the world go so wrong after the expulsion from the Garden?

 

Boston Qualifier Questionnaire — Dave M

Name: Dave M

Sex: Male

Age (at the time of first BQ): 28

Height (at the time of first BQ):  6’0″

Weight (at the time of first BQ): 170

At which marathon did you get your first BQ? Colorado Marathon (Fort Collins, CO)

Tell us a little about the race. Great course: point to point with a large net downhill. It is at altitude though, so if you’re not from the mountains could be a struggle. Really pretty course though, with most along the Cache la Poudre river. Race went exactly to plan, going out faster the first half and then hanging on for the flatter last 6-7 miles.

How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ? 14 years

Did you run in college or high school? Yes

What was your approximate lifetime mileage at the time of your first BQ? 16,000

How many miles did you run in the year before your first BQ? 0

Approximately how many races did you run in that year? 4

Did you follow a canned program? If so, which one? If not, can you give us an idea of what your training philosophy was? No, up to 90 mile weeks. Some speed work thrown in. Long runs up to 24 miles. Just lots of consistency. Strength is the key to the marathon.

Did you run with a running club or utilize a coach? No

Did cross training play a role in your training? If so, how? Only when hurt. I would ride my bike

Did speed work play a role in your training? If so, how? Yes, lots of tempos and some intervals. My key workout was a 10 mile tempo straight into 6 x 800m on the track at slightly below goal marathon pace. That was a killer workout.

Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ? I signed up for Boston after my first qualifying, but didn’t get to run due to injury. 10 years later and I just qualified again last year (at the Lake Place Marathon). So I’m signed up for Boston 2020, and trying to stay healthy this time. More recently I’ve been doing very little speed work (mostly just occasional tempo runs). Just trying to get good base and hitting my long runs pretty hard.

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