Boston Marathon Tips for First-Timers via Tips From You!
- The expo is the best expo of any marathon…hands-down.
- Fill up your swag bag with all the great goodies!
- Don’t wait until late Sunday to go. Go as early as possible and plan to spend a lot of time there; there’s a lot to see. If you wait until Sunday at the end of the day, a lot of the vendors have already packed up and left.
Pre-Race-Getting to the Start in Hopkinton:
- When they bus you out to the start at Hopkinton (three hours before the start), bring an inflatable air mattress to sit on.
- They drop you off in an open field and leave you.
- Bring a garbage bag to the start. Cut a hole just big enough for your eyes, nose, and mouth. Do not cut arm holes. When you put it on, it won’t breathe, so it will keep you warm.
- Eat a larger than normal meal before you get on the bus in the morning, and bring a snack. It is a while before you start.
- Bus ride to the start is over an hour. Use the bathroom before you get on the bus in the morning.
- Bring toilet paper to the start, which is named, “Athletes’ Village.” Porta-potty lines are really long, so using the bushes is advised.
The Race Itself-Course Secrets:
- First mile of race is downhill. DO NOT START TOO FAST!
- First part of the race is a little boring. That changes when you get closer to the city.
- Heartbreak Hill isn’t that bad. (Still, I am preparing for the worst!)
- Heartbreak Hill is three hills, actually. If you train in Seattle, you’ll be fine (this coming from a sub 3 hour Boston marathoner).
- Be prepared for the downhill section after Heartbreak Hill(s).
- The fans are awesome.
- Draw your name on your body, on your bib, somewhere on you so the crowds can cheer for you by name
- Run without headphones so you can interact with the crowds.
- Take pictures.
- Water stations are packed. Bring your own water bottle if you can run with it comfortably.
- The finish is great! Lots of energy.
- You feel like a celebrity as you cross the finish with everyone cheering
- Figure out in advance where to meet your people when you finish. It’s a zoo.
- Best marathon…hands down.
- Best overall marathon experience.
- Wear your running shoes on your flight to Boston, and pack your race outfit in your carry on in case of lost luggage.
- Don’t run in brand new shoes.
- This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Soak it ALL up.
Some other reads from Run Revolution on the Boston Marathon:
- Boston Marathon Race Day-Part One
- Boston Marathon Race Day-Part Two
- Boston Marathon Race Day-Part Three
- 116th Boston Marathon Finisher
- On April 16, 2o12, I Became a Part of Marathon History
- I Must Get Back to Boston