A few months ago I took part in the 117th Boston Marathon. As everyone knows, the race was bombed. Helen and I were unharmed but a bit too close for comfort. After the race I wrote up my race report which was picked up by the icon of the running community that is Hal Higdon, who emailed me asking if he could use parts of my story in a book he wanted to write about the bombings.
I have used Hal’s marathon training programmes to get me through many of my 25+ marathons and once had the please of meeting him at the Expo of the Chicago marathon.
Ever so slightly star struck because of Hal’s legendary status I agreed, even though I had some reservations having had some issues with the way the press behaved after Boston which included stealing pictures of me from Facebook and publishing them in the national and local newspapers.
We exchanged emails a few times to check the facts and for Hal to ask permission for some copy editing and artistic license. It is slightly disconcerting to read someone else’s version of your story, especially when sometimes you think your own words are actually better, but hey, it is his book and I am happy that even if it isn’t great literature, it will be done with respect.
After that I pretty much forgot about it until I got an email telling me that the book was being published on Kindle.
This brought things back quite starkly.
I had promised after Boston that I would do everything in my power to go back next year. The whole point of Boston is of course that you need to qualify. While I have a qualifying time for Boston, I had planned to tackle the Moray marathon at the beginning of September to make sure that I got a better qualifiying time because the race is sure to be oversubscribed with runners wishing to show solidarity with the victims and the city of Boston.
As occasional readers of my blog will know, I am currently sidelined with an achilles injury and will not be able to take part as planned in the Moray marathon and so will need to rely on my qualifying time from Toronto last year. This only gives me a 2 minute cushion inside the required qualifying time which I suspect may not be enough to get a place in Boston next year and the prospect of not being able to fulfil my commitment hurts even more than my sore achilles.
Hal Higdons book 4:09:43: The Boston Marathon Bombings is available on kindle from Amazon