The Boston Qualifier Questionnaire

Welcome to the Boston Qualifier Questionnaire a place where runners share their stories of qualifying for the Boston Marathon.

For many runners, myself included, a Boston Marathon qualifying time (a “BQ”) is the pinnacle of achievement in the sport. I think it is safe to say I am obsessed with getting a BQ. One day on the roads I thought it might be interesting to start asking other runners I “know” either in real life or on the internet about their experience getting into the race. Hence was born the BQ Questionnaire, or BQ(Q) for short. Since then, runners from all over the world have read, and contributed, to the project. The project has been featured on and world famous runners like Amby Burfoot have shared their stories.

On this page I feature the most recent responses to the BQ(Q) and collect all the responses by sex and age grouping. Responses from professional runners and legends of the sport are also featured on this page. The most viewed responses from work-a-day age group runners are featured here. Some of the runners interviewed are gifted and BQed on their first marathon.  Others tried for years. We can learn from all of them.

For some statistical analysis of the results of the survey, head on over here.

You can share your story of qualifying for Boston by filling out the form available here. Or, if you’re old school, there’s a blank form of the BQ(Q) at the bottom of this page which you can fill our and email it to me at miloandthecalf at gmail dot com



9/26/2016 Mark Shipley (Male, 37)

9/14/2016 Sarah Bard (Female 24)

7/7/2016 Diane Berberian (Female, 38)

Dan (Male, 28)

Sherry (Female, 26)

Women 18-34


Dorothea T



Jana T

Janae J (Hungry Runner Girl)

Jane (50 State Canuck)



Kim Gasper

Kristine (Kristine’s Not So Deep Thoughts)


Laura (Frayed Laces)

Lauren R


Madeline Harris



Robin Kutner

Sarah Bard


Stephanie T

Candice S

Tanya S

Tara C

Men 18 – 34


Alex Varner (Nike Trail)

Amby Burfoot (Winner of the 1968 Boston Marathon)

Andy H

Anton Krupicka (La Sportiva)

Abe M

Alex H

Andrew 1

Andrew 2

Andrew 3


Ben Hawn


Bob S

Brendan Boyle


Brian Eutermoser

Brian N

Christian H

Christopher B

Chuck I



Dan (2)

Daniel H

Darrell R

Dave M

David Laney (Nike Trail)

David Pinsonneault

David S

Doug O

Doug S


Graham Peck

Greg R

Bash Z

Hunter Hall

Jaime R

James Murray

James N

Jason B

Jeremy D

Jason Guy

Joe M

John L Kelly

Jonathan B

Jordan A

Josh H 

Josh R

Justin G

Cory M

James S

Jeff E (Logic of Long Distance)

Kevin Barrett

Kyle B

Mark D (Mark to Boston)


Matt C

Matt L

Matthew Roberts

Michael R

Mike A

Mike G

Mike D

Mike F

Mike Petrina

Mike Voth

Mike Wardian (Hoka One One)

Rich E

Richard Safranik

Rob Bond

Robert Fried


Roger S

Rohit N

Sage Canaday (Hoka One One)

Simon O


Tim Cali

Tim T

Tom G

Tyler Andrew (Hoka One One)


Men 35-40

Bob H


Chris H


Don S

Eric H

Eric M

Eric Wheeler

Greg M

Guillaume R

James D


Joe H

Joe Pak


Julian N

Keith G


Kevin B

Kevin G

Kevin Young 


Mark Shipley

Michael H

Michael S

Mike Zimmerman


Rich A

Serguei A

Theron B

Tim Swanson

Wade O

Wally D

Women 35-40


Diane Berberian

Elizabeth C

Jennifer B

Julie B

Kimberly B

Laura S


Lulu Y



Terzah B

Women 40-44

Cindy W


Jody (Cross My Heart Fitness)

Men 40-44

Bob E

Dave P

Dirk H

Jay S. 

Jim H

John S

Lance H

Gordon Warren

Greg C

Matthew Kleiman

Michael P

Paul G

Rob E


Tim E

Dave E

Shawn B

Women 45-50

Dari W


Kathy H


Linda Nollette



Obsessive Research Mommy

Stephanie W

Men 45-50

Anthony D

Bob D 

Bob Gottlieb


Eric L

Glen S



Justin B

Mark W

Scott D

Steve W

Thomas A

William M

Women 50-54



Lani T

Men 50-54


Paul F

Joe M

Keith A

Ken B


Michael F.

Ted B. 


Women 55-60



Men 55- 60



Gary Jakobcic

John Cox

Ramon C


Rob Mason


Scott DeYoung

Men 60-64

Don G

Tim Healy

Men 65-69

John Davis

The BQ Questionnaire

Thank you for agreeing to fill out the BQ Questionnaire. Please answer the questions in as much detail as you can and email your response to miloandthecalf at gmail com. I and other runners working towards a BQ could learn from your experience. Thanks again for taking part!

  1. Give us the vitals:
    1. Name (and website/blog/twitter if applicable):
    2. Sex:
    3. Age (at the time of first BQ):
    4. Height:
    5. Weight (at the time of first BQ):
  2. At which marathon did you get your first BQ? What was your finishing time? Tell us a little about the race.
  3. How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ? Did you run in college or high school?
  4. What was your approximate lifetime mileage at the time of your first BQ?
  5. How many miles did you run in the year before your first BQ?
  6. Approximately how many races did you run in that year?
  7. Did you follow a canned program? If so, which one? If not, can you give us an idea of what your training philosophy was?
  8. Did you run with a running club or utilize a coach?
  9. Did cross training play a role in your training? If so, how?
  10. Did speed work play a role or specific workouts play a role in your training? If so, how?
  11. Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ?

22 Responses to The Boston Qualifier Questionnaire

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  4. Ann says:

    Thanks so much for compiling this. I am in the process of training for a BQ. I have run for over 20 years but this is the first year I really have the bug. Interestingly it has nothing to do with the bombing. Instead it was watching my husband return this year crossing the finish line in 3:06. I was so impressed I was inspired to try myself.

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  14. Satish says:

    This is a great compilation, thanks for putting this together. I hope to fill this questionnaire one day !🙂

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