Fresh Living

NoStopping.jpgI didn’t get down to watch the Boston Marathon today, as I have in past years when friends have run or I was just hungry for a little vicarious “wow, that’s amazing.”  But there’s something electric about the day, even if you’re just watching updates online or remembering in passing, “hey, it’s Marathon Monday!”

To me, this picture, submitted by a reader to The Boston Globe, answers the basic question, what’s inspiring about the Boston Marathon?  At the most fundamental level, a marathon is about endurance, and this sign, aimed at cars but really capturing the spirit of the event, cleverly motivates runners to keep going–a lesson we can all use in our lives.  How hard it can feel to put one foot in front of another sometimes. That’s where you have to trust your body, summon your energy, and just not stop.

Here are 4 more inspiring things about marathons:

Marathons are often the culmination of years-long goals.  They’re events you train for, plan for, carefully shape your life around, and then accomplish.  Watching a field of marathon runners is a reminder that we can each meet big goals if we train, plan, and shape.    

Marathons are celebrations of excellence. The Boston Marathon, for which you have to qualify, is a particularly inspiring one, as its runners are truly in top condition. 

Marathons bring together communities.   From the crowds that gather, write encouraging messages in chalk, hand out water, or just cheer to the runners who pace each other and hug at the finish line to those who run to raise money–and awareness–for charities, a marathon is a time to take to the streets and stand shoulder to shoulder with neighbors.

Every marathoner has a story.  Just read this moving story of siblings who are running the Boston Marathon today in memory of their brother who died of leukemia before he could fulfill his dream of competing in the race.  Everyone runs for a reason, a purpose, an inspiration.  And we watch with all of those things too.

What do marathons mean to you?  Have you ever run one? 

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