Hopkinton To Boston!

Posted: March 22, 2013 in Uncategorized

You will be running through most of these towns during our 21 miler Saturday and all of them on April 15th. There is so much running history that has taken place along this amazing route and you will soon be part of it.

You will create your own history beginning this weekend and further developing it on April 15th. Your current focus, as it should be, is likely on completing the distance. But as I look back to 1979 when I ran Boston for the first time in 2:48:35, I continuously consider my history along the course from Hopkinton to Boston and the impact that it’s had on my life. I hope that you will take a moment to look beyond the finish line and contemplate the impact that your Boston Marathon effort will have on your life.

You will discover this journey is so much more than just running. It will define you in ways that you simply can’t imagine. You’ll learn things about yourself for the very first time. You may be sitting in the Athlete’s Village and hearing a language for the very first time or be standing in the starting corral and be inspired by something or someone who you’ve never noticed before.

I remember signing my very first autograph just as I was entering the starting corral over 34 years ago and haven’t signed another one…that’s the power of Boston! I’m always touched by the little girls that are always near the starting line with their autograph books asking every female runner in sight for their autograph. You may spark a dream in a child to one day run Boston…that’s the power of the Boston Marathon!

The marathon is undoubtedly a challenging event and that’s why it is so special. Boston has a history of being one of the most challenging marathons in the world. But as with most things in life, the greater the challenge the greater the reward!

And when you cross the finish line in Boston you will be duly rewarded. You will receive a heroes welcome from the volunteers at the finish line. And when you look into the eyes of a friend or family member for the first time after finishing you may feel emotions that you’ve never anticipated. And you will begin to feel the magnitude of your accomplishment.

When you hobble to work on Tuesday morning with your finisher’s medal around your neck and receive applause from your coworkers, you will feel their pride for you and realize that you’re an inspiration to so many.

You are an inspiration to me, too! I will be forever grateful for the opportunity to play a small role in your incredible accomplishment.

  1. Alexis Avila says:

    Very inspiring. Thank You Coach Rick

  2. Mark Lorden says:

    Hope your athletes came through their 21 miler today bolstered by the confidence provided by rolling over the top of Heartbreak and down the hill past BC en route to Cleveland Circle. A lot of great memories along the course, not the least of which was exchanging a brief hug with my since departed Dad at the corner of Comm Ave and Hereford St. That was back in 1982 and it was my first time running Boston. As kids my Dad had taken us to the fire station in Newton on Marathon Monday on several occasions to watch the Marathon; little did he know that it would inspire his eldest son to complete 11 Boston Marathons and more than 60 marathons. But it will always be the first Boston in 1982 that will forever be etched in my mind. Not only because it was a PR at the time (2 51:15) and a personal best at Boston; but equally because of the memory of sharing that hug with my Dad and seeing tears of pride in his eyes. I share that same pride today having watched my sons compete in high school track and cross country, achieving their own PRs (which by the way, far exceed mine). Now my eldest son is off to college as a freshman out in SoCal, competing in track and XC at a D3 school. I have yet to see him compete at the collegiate level, but I will at some point. In fact, I can’t wait for the opportunity…

    • Mark,

      Thank you for sharing these wonderful stories. I love to think about your dad taking you to the fire station when you were a child and wondering if he ever imagined his son would develop into such a stellar runner. I have no doubt that your marathoning dream begain at an early age and was sparked by standing on the Boston course as a little boy. I also love the memory of stopping to hug him on Hereford on your way to a Boston PR. And now you have begun an amazing legacy of running by passing that on to your son…that’s an amazing gift.

      You have so much to be proud of, Mark. I know that I’m certainly proud of you on so many levels…particularly the person you are and the compassionate manner in which you’ve lived.

      Your Friend,


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