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Boston Marathon

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San Antonio,TX,

Member Since:

Dec 13, 2009



Goal Type:


Running Accomplishments:

5K PR - 18:01 - Nov '14

10K PR - 38:37 (workout) - Oct '14

Half-marathon - 1:22:43 - Jan '14

Marathon - 2:58:43 in Boston! - Apr '13

50 mile - 7:49:30 (2nd) - Nov '15

Short-Term Running Goals:

- Balance

- Run more trails, volunteer, more social running, run with a team

- Race a lot more.  learn.

Race results / possible schedule:

Apr 2 - Hells Hills 25k trail - 4th

Apr 9 - Toughest 'n Texas 20-mile Trail - 2nd

May 7 - Paleface - Trail Marathon - 3rd

May 29 - American Hero road 25k - 2nd

Jun 25 - Pedernales Falls 30k nighttime Trail - 5th (sick)

Jul 16 - Muleshoe Bend 30k nighttime Trail - 3rd

Jul 23-24 - Fossil Valley 9-hour nighttime Trail - 2nd

Aug 6 - Colorado Bend 30k nighttime Trail - 4th

Aug 27 - Reveille Peak 30k nighttime Trail (entered)

Sep 10 - Franklin Mountains 50k (entered - not all-out effort...I hope)

Sep 17 - Lighthouse Hill 20-mile trail (entered)

Sep 24 - J&J 50 mile trail

Long-Term Running Goals:

Compete in a few more ultras without going off course (again)

Sub-18 in a 5k

One.  Good.  Marathon.


I started running at age 30, in late 2009.  I have 2 daughters (10 and 8 yrs old).



Favorite Blogs:

Miles:This week: 0.00 Month: 0.00 Year: 0.00
Saucony A5 Lifetime Miles: 1054.70
Kinvara 2 - Gray/red Lifetime Miles: 1551.08
Kinvara 3 - Gray/red Lifetime Miles: 1244.23
1160s Lifetime Miles: 888.70
Saucony A5 Red Lifetime Miles: 565.10
Saucony A6 - Yellow Lifetime Miles: 214.00
Saucony A6 - Red/blue Lifetime Miles: 61.50
NB MT101 Trail Lifetime Miles: 302.00
Fastwitch 6 Red #1 Lifetime Miles: 286.50
Fastwitch 6 Red #2 Lifetime Miles: 267.00
Race: Boston Marathon (26.2 Miles) 02:58:43, Place overall: 1843, Place in age division: 1245
Slow milesFast milesTotal Distance

Obviously some sicko out there changed this day for everyone, some more than others.  I was already on a bus headed back to my car.

So, a muted celebration for the sub-3.  I am definitely an example of how NOT to run Boston.  1:26:11, 1:32:32 for the 2 halves.  Meh, it was fun trying though.  Definitely my worst bonk and most painful finish in a marathon, but I hung in there, even as I struggled to run 7:30 pace at the end.

Hope everyone from the blog is ok.  Tough, sad day when it's all said and done.


*Based on some comments I got, I think I will fill in the details of the race.  If nothing else, I'd like to have the (good) memory of the race for later.

Ok, so everything leading up to the race went great, I think.  Good taper, good carb load, good sleep, stress-free travel to the starting line, etc.

My splits are the mile-marker splits -- I turned off auto-lap on Garmin and tried to just click the button at each mile marker (missed a couple though).

Miles 1-5 - 6:45, 6:30, 6:32, 6:33, 6:36.  The first 4 miles are downhill in this race.  Mile 1 was frusturating in the crowds, but in hindsight it was probably good for me to be pace-limited by the mass of people.  In every other race I've run, the crowds thin out pretty soon, but not this one.  Overall, it didn't bother me, except you smell a lot of farts...

Miles 6-10 - 6:31, 6:34, 13:07 for 2 (6:34 pace), 6:34.  Here's where I messed up, I think.  This was basically a flat stretch and I was low 6:30s all the way.  I seriously thought I was in 2:55 shape, but this was more like 2:51-2 pace.  I think I could have saved the bonk by just going a little slower here.

Miles 11-16 - 6:35, 6:30, 6:35, 6:32, 6:43, 6:33.  Ok, these are the rest of the flat/downhill miles before the Newton hills.  Again, just a few seconds slower might've saved me.  I was really loving the crowds and the course though...having a great time!  My family was all waiting around mile 14 and I got to dish out some high-fives.

The cheering section!  My 2 kids are covered up with posters, but the other two are my cousin (the 11-year-old) and my wife.  We stayed with my aunt in Providence for 5 nights and they were such great hosts.

Miles 17-21 - 6:58, 7:02, 6:51, 7:09, 7:23.  The Newton hills - 17, 18, 20, and 21 are uphill and 21 has Heartbreak.  Mile 19 is kind of a break.  Really, they weren't bad hills, I just thought I had conserved more energy than I actually had.  I told myself before the race that 7:00 would be ok.  But when 21 rang in so slow and I felt so depleted, I knew I was in trouble.

Miles 22-26.2 - 6:53, 7:12, 7:09, 15:15 for 2 (7:38 pace!), 7:12 pace for the 0.22.  Even with the downhill, I couldn't keep up.  I went from calculating what I would need for sub-2:55, to what I would need for sub-3.  Like I said, I've never bonked this bad.  It was very hard to keep running.  Everytime I'd hit a mile marker, I just could not believe I had so long to go.  I just kept telling myself not to walk, and I'd get it.  Even with a mile to go, I wasn't sure - I was at 2:51-something but I did not think for a second that I had sub-3 in the bag...I just felt terrible.  There were literally hundreds of smarter runners whizzing by me, kind of embarrassing.  Thankfully the race ended and I plodded across the line in time, relieved and happy.

I think with better pacing I might've gone a couple minutes faster, but this was fine.  I went for it, based on what I thought I could pull off, and still came away with a decent result.  Ended up about 1500 spots ahead of my bib number, not bad.


I wasn't planning on running Boston next year but I almost want to do it out of spite for the bombing.

Saucony A5 - Blue Miles: 26.20
Weight: 0.00
From Rye on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 05:19:46 from

Glad you're safe! Been thinking about you and hoping all is well.

From Daniel Brunson on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 06:45:14 from

I checked your Facebook page yesterday when I heard the news and was relieved to see that you were safe. It was a sad day, but it's good to see you are alright.

From Bonnie on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 07:52:51 from

Hugs. I am sorry your accomplishment was marred by this ... We were cheering for you, and with you in spirit.

From josse on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 08:15:43 from

Congrats on the sub-3:)

From Rob Murphy on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 08:18:17 from

2:58 guy!

Congratulations in spite of the circumstances. You deserve it.

From Andrea on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 08:40:43 from

A very well-deserved accomplishment for you Joe! Those hills at Boston can really take their toll, but you did hang in there and got that sub-3. You'll have to change your blog name now :) You should be so proud. Great job!

From Russ on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 08:51:27 from

Great job Joe. I was watching each 5K split and cheering for you. You hung in there very tough and smashed your B goal.

From seeaprilrun on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 09:01:41 from

Congrats on fighting it out and getting the sub-3! It was a tragic day, yes, but we will run on. I, for one, am interested in details about your race if you want to share!

From Jason D on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 09:04:34 from

I enjoyed tracking you, Joe. I was trying to do my math for the last 2k. I saw the clock time and almost died! Then I saw the adjusted time and cheered.

A very troubling day indeed. Glad you are safe.

From Daniel Brunson on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 09:05:40 from

I second the details request if you will indulge us Joe. Your sub 3 was a great accomplishment!

From Neil on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 09:28:27 from

I can understand your angst but you worked extremely hard for this milestone. You should be proud of a great accomplishment on a tough course. Your next one will be even better. Glad you're ok.

From RileyCook on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 09:56:36 from

Nice race Joe. Congrats on the sub-3!

I'm very glad to here you are safe! I know it's easier said than done on a tragic day like this but don't feel guilty for being happy with your PR.

From Jake K on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 11:18:57 from

I'm really happy for you Joe. Was very excited to see that 2:58 pop up on the tracker yesterday. You went for it, but it wasn't unreasonable to go out in 1:26. You've put in the training to make that pace a reality - Boston is tough though... you run 1 minute too fast in the first half and it takes away five times that in the second. Hardly anyone runs even splits.

You have a lot to be proud of - sub 3, by a lot, at BOSTON! That's huge.

From Kam on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 13:05:41 from

To me, those half splits look pretty reasonable, given the elevation profile of the course. That's a real solid effort. You should be proud, even though it's hard to feel a lot of satisfaction in light of the bombings.

From jtshad on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 13:55:48 from

Congrats on the PR and a good race. Glad you are safe.

From Bec on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 14:00:42 from

Great job on your Boston Joe. Hope you had a great day minus the sadness. Glad you got this experience, you have worked hard to get to that race. Sub 3 is ALWAYS an awesome effort no matter what.

From Tracy on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 14:39:12 from

So happy that you are safe--you are the first person I thought of when I heard the news. I am so happy that you accomplished your goal, and nothing can take this away from you. You are so fast!

From JG on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 18:55:18 from

Awesome race Joe, glad you are all safe! I am slowly decompressing ... crazy

From I Just Run on Wed, Apr 17, 2013 at 14:02:14 from

The events sure put a damper on things didn't they.

I am very happy with your PR. I'm glad you went out and tried to hit your "A+" plan. If you hadn't tried you would have been disappointed. Actually I believe you hit between your A and B goal so we should call this your A- plan. :-)

Now you're in a elite group. A Sub-3 Marathoner...not many people can say that!!!

From SlowJoe on Wed, Apr 17, 2013 at 16:39:45 from

I really appreciate all the comments everyone. I've read them all multiple times, it means a lot.

We got home this afternoon, and I put up a full report with a couple pictures.

From butlerbrunning on Wed, Apr 17, 2013 at 16:56:48 from

Congrats on the PR as well SJ

Glad you and your party are safe as well. You will have to come up to the city sometime for a run.

We usually have a nice group that meets up for Sat. long runs...I had a great weekend and wonderful time up to the Bomb...what a bummer to end a race.

From seeaprilrun on Wed, Apr 17, 2013 at 17:56:19 from

Thanks for the detailed report and pics! You tell a story about troubles at the end of the course that I have heard over and over from others that have run the course. I really want to run it some day! Your bonk wasn't horrific--you still went well under 3 under a difficult course and the slowdown wasn't to an embarassing degree. :) congrats on the runner formerly known as the 3 hour guy

From allie on Wed, Apr 17, 2013 at 20:06:09 from

so happy for you, joe. you worked very hard and you made it happen. i'm glad you changed your blog title.

great pictures -- your family is adorable, and i'm glad you are all okay.

love the "go slow joe" sign...

From Matt Schreiber on Wed, Apr 17, 2013 at 21:04:21 from

Awesome job Joe on the PR... Sub 3! Pretty sure noone was doubting that would happen in this race. It was fun to see your progress in this buildup. Watching the tracker was kind of nerve racking. It may have been my imagination but I think that was pretty slow in updating. Was wondering if you took a wrong turn a couple times. :)

Glad to see you and your family came out of the mess safe. And thanks for sharing the report. Well done!

Love the new blog name, too. Gotta remember where you came from! Congrats!

From I Just Run on Thu, Apr 18, 2013 at 10:47:46 from

Again, congratulations! I think you would have been disappointed with yourself if you hadn't gone for it! Now you know you are just "super-human" and not "immortal". :-)

From Jake K on Thu, Apr 18, 2013 at 12:21:38 from

Great extended version of the report. Those last 5 miles are tough, despite looking so easy on the elevation profile. The course gives you so much less margin of error than other marathons. Like you said, maybe just conserving a few seconds in the middle miles would have prevented the bonk - but on the other hand, you never know when its all going to come together perfectly and you're going to run 2:51.

I say run Boston next year. It would be great to meet in real life, and lets face it, I'm not coming to Oklahoma for a race. I hate wind :-)

From SlowJoe on Thu, Apr 18, 2013 at 15:05:05 from

BB - Yeah, I'd love to meet you guys for a LR one of these days. I'll be ready to run again eventually....still got frankenstein legs

April - you'd love the course, big crowds cheering all 26 miles. i'm sure you will get the chance (it's not like you'll ever have to worry about qualifying!)

allie - thanks! it was such a cool thing to see them there with the signs.

Matt S. - hah - I'm glad there was some suspense. In the last few miles I kept thinking about what I would do if I ran another 3:00:xx....probably flip out and go crazy!

IJR - thanks - I prefer semi-mortal.

Jake - hey, thanks for the help along the way this training cycle. Boston is definitely a course you can learn from, and improve upon, which it sounds like you will do next year. I do agree, there's no reason for you to ever run in Oklahoma...Boston is definitely on the list of possibilities for me next year.

From Dan on Fri, Apr 19, 2013 at 20:09:50 from

Sorry I am late Joe- but nice read. I think the bonk was worse in your head than in the actual times. Way to keep it together. Love the new title as well!

From Rye on Sat, Apr 20, 2013 at 19:31:53 from

Nice report speedy! Spot on. What a great day for you despite the circumstances...Cute family you have!!!

From flatlander on Sun, Apr 28, 2013 at 16:42:59 from

Loved the report Joe, must have been great to see your family at that point on the course. Congratulations on the sub-3, you will certainly take a lot more time off if you care to, before you switch to ultras (or was it 5Ks, I forgot).

From Kelli on Mon, Nov 18, 2013 at 07:40:35 from

I am really late to the game on this comment!! I am a non-blogger. But you posted right before me this morning and I came in to see how you were doing and stumbled across this! Holy crud! Great job running the Boston Marathon sub-3. That is awesome. Great report and pictures.

Did you decide to do it again in 2014?

From SlowJoe on Tue, Nov 19, 2013 at 04:30:32 from

hey kelli! yep on 2014...see you there?

From Kelli on Tue, Nov 19, 2013 at 13:23:32 from

We debated, but instead we are using the money to take our kids on a 10 day trip to California (Disneyland and then San Francisco). I am no longer a runner. Well, not a marathoner anyway. I only ran one last year and it was because I had signed up a year in advance! ;)

Have fun, it will be a fabulous year to be in Boston. I am jealous! I may never make it back.

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