Qualify for Boston

Minutes after qualifying, the best and worst I’ve ever felt in my life.

From the moment I first decided to run a marathon, eight years ago, I wanted to qualify for Boston. It would take running a 3:10 marathon; that was my goal from the very beginning.

It didn’t happen in the first race (4:53!), and it didn’t happen for many more after that. But finally, in October 2009 (in my first marathon after becoming vegetarian), I did it. 3:09:59 at the Wineglass Marathon in Corning, New York, and a day I’ll never forget for as long as I live.

With such an inauspicious start and so many years of failed attempts, I’m now in a unique position to share what I learned about getting to Boston when it once seemed so far off (impossible, even). I hope this 11-part series of posts provides you with the information and inspiration you need to make it happen.

The hardest part—the work—is up to you.

1. How I Qualified for the Boston Marathon

2. My Plan to Qualify for the Boston Marathon

3. Boston-Qualifying Requirements, Races, and Information

4. The Training Program I Used to Qualify for Boston

5. You Have to Believe

6. Down to the Last Four Miles (Qualifying Race Recap)

7. Photos and Videos from the Qualifying Race

8. Looking Back

9. The Psychological Strategy I Used to Take 100 Minutes Off My Marathon Time

10. My recap of the Boston Marathon

11. On the Boston Marathon Qualifying Standards Debacle

For a long time, injury prevented me from ever getting into the training groove necessary to qualify for Boston. But eventually, I beat the pain. Here’s how: