In honor of the big weekend we have ahead of us I thought I would focus today on the Boston Marathon. There is a lot of tradition and history behind this marathon, so I thought it’d be fun to discuss some fun facts about it!
We will be leaving tomorrow sometime. We aren’t quite sure what my husband’s work schedule is going to be yet, but as soon as he is done we hitting the road! I have lots of fun things coming over the weekend for you aside for the updates from the race, so stay tuned!!
Katherine Switzer Paved the Way for Women
Women were originally not allowed to participate in the marathon, and were not allowed until 1972.
You may remember the famous picture of race officials trying to get Katherine Switzer off the course after she ran it using her initials (KV Switzer). They did not realize they had a female running until the saw her in the race.
She was able to dodge those trying to get her off the course and finished in 4 hours and 20 minutes.
The Highest Point of the Boston Marathon is not Heartbreak Hill.
I think one of the most famous parts of the Boston Marathon is heartbreak hill. However, did you know that it is not actually the highest point? The start line is in fact the highest incline on the course at 463 feet above sea level. Heartbreak hill is only 263 feet about sea level.
However, since heartbreak hill is at mile 20 – that makes a little bit of a difference.
Why is it called “Heartbreak Hill”?
In 1936, defending champion John Kelley overtook Ellison Brown, giving him a pat on the shoulder as he ran past. This simple action fueled the drive in Brown, who in return rallied and pulled ahead of Kelley and went on to win.
The point at which he passed Kelley was on what is now referred to “Heartbreak Hill” because it was at this point that he “broke Kelley’s heart.”
Original Start Line
The original marathon start line was in Ashland because the original marathon only measured to 24.8 miles.
They moved the start line to where it is now, Hopkinton, in order to add the additional miles need to complete the entire 26.2.
Until 1960, directors of the Boston Marathon required participants to get a physical exam on the morning of the race.
World’s Oldest Marathon
The Boston Marathon is actually the world’s oldest marathon start
In 1980 Rosie Ruiz, appeared to win the women’s division in a record breaking time. However, it was discovered that witnesses had seen Rosie spectating the race and there was no evidencing showing she had actually won.
Needless to say she was stripped of her winner’s medal.
Ever since the inception of the Boston Marathon it has always been held on Patriot’s Day.
For those of you who don’t know, Patriot’s Day is a Massachusetts state holiday that commemorates the opening battled of the American Revolution which took place in Lexington and Concord.
The Red Sox
Every year the Boston Red Sox’s have a home game on Patriot’s Day, the day of the marathon.
It is timed perfectly so that after the game is over all the fans are able to pour out of the stands and cheer on the runners and they finish the marathon.
I got Engaged
This completely has nothing to do with the history of the marathon, but this one always holds a special place for Wes and I each year when we go.
I wish we had someone there to catch the moment in action, but it was extremely special. I can’t believe it has already been 4 years!
I am really looking forward to going back to Boston! It should be a great weekend and a great getaway!
What is one race that you have always wanted to do?
Of course, for me one of the big ones is the Boston Marathon but i’ve also always wanted to run the Nike Women’s Marathon and the Disney Marathon.
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