Running Down Hill Was My First Mistake

Hi Brendan,

I’m sorry to hear you have been having a tough time being able to have your chemo treatments.  I talked to your mom on Friday and she said hopefully you will be able to start up again this week.   I planned on coming with you to the JFC on Wednesday, so I’ll call tomorrow to confirm it with her.

I got to run part of the marathon course yesterday.   The met the LSRC for our 20 mile run.  Buses took us to mile 11 in Natick and where we ran back to South Boston.    Even though it’s just another training run, this one is a little more exciting.  The distance is longer and I’m on the course for most of the run which definitely builds anticipation for Marathon Monday.  It also allows me to start figuring out a game plan for the marathon.

Most of the Boston Marathon is running downhill.  It sounds like a good thing but if you don’t pace yourself it can ruin you by the time you get to heart break hill.  I learned that my first year running it.  I ran the first half of the marathon too fast.  I started to tire at the Newton Fire Station and by the time I hit the hills I didn’t have much left in the tank.  Just before mile 25 I stopped running.  My leg muscles started to seize up.  I stood on the side of the road which felt like an eternity as I stared at the Citgo sign.  I thought there was no way I would be able to finish, and just wanted to quit.  I’m not sure how but I started moving, slowly, toward Kenmore Square.  The next mile was the longest mile I have ever run. My legs hurt with every step.  My body kept begging me to stop.  When I got to Hereford St for the final turn on to Boylston St, my calf muscles contracted in to a tight ball and I had to stop yet again.   I stretched the muscle by using the sidewalk curb with only 600 yards to the finish line.  Then with one more mental push I was able to complete the 26.2 miles.

Every marathon isn’t a tragedy like my first Boston.  I’ve learned my best lessons by making mistakes. Two years later I am a smarter runner.   I start slow, watch my pace, drink and fuel along the way, and save myself for Heartbreak Hill.  If I feel good when get to Boston College I know I’ve done a good job managing my run.

I know I owe you some pictures from the cruise (which was a lot of fun!).   After I get them off the camera I’ll email you a few.  Take care and I’ll talk to you tomorrow.


RM: 20.15 (Natick to South Boston)
WM: 20.15
TM:  283.75

One comment

  1. Liz Pearson

    Hi Patrick,

    I’m glad to see you are doing so well with your running and that most of that awful snow/ice is gone. Just think, a little over a month from now you will be running the marathon! This is very exciting for our family that you are doing this for Brendan!!!!

    I am still collecting $ from work people and I am happy to see that several friends and relatives have donated to you. Family/friends really step up when asked!!!!I will send you along the checks I have collected soon. So far, I have collected $75. from work.

    Keep on running and be safe!

    Liz Pearson

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