Today is a sad day for the running community. My thoughts go out to my running brothers and sisters, their families, spectators, volunteers, first responders, basically everyone who has been impacted by the Boston Marathon explosions.
I have to say that terrorism at a running event has crossed my mind before. I've thought about the contributing factors that would make it a perfect storm for a terrorist attack - tens of thousands of runners, volunteers, workers, spectators, family members, etc. Never in my wildest dreams did I think such speculation would come to fruition just mere weeks after both my Disney and Pensacola races.
I woke up this morning and headed to the gym to get in a bit of upper body cardio and some core work. The entire time, I thought about whether I should run the 13.1 series in Chicago when I go back home to Illinois for a family visit in early June. I went back and forth about it. The cons were that I've been battling runner's knee and did I want to continue training with that, not to mention I just got my foot tattoo redone, so I'm out of commission for probably another 10 days on top of the 5 days I've already been out. The pros were that I would absolutely love to run along the Lake Michigan waterfront, I love Chicago in general and it would be yet another piece of bling to add to my collection. Plus, I love the challenge. I never envisioned myself as a half marathoner, but I embrace and enjoy the challenge.
By the time I left the gym, my attitude toward Chicago was "LET'S DO THIS!" And then 5 hours later, as soon as I turned on the news to see the scenes coming out of Boston, my determination had turned to - yes, I'll admit it - fear. I know I can't let fear rule my life, but I have to admit that I'm rethinking this completely. Chicago is a big city and big races in big cities bring out big crowds of people who are perfect targets for terrorism. No, I don't want to let terrorism win by allowing fear to dictate my calendar of events, but at the same time, it gives me pause.
I know the running community is a generous, caring community and I've already seen several running clubs rallying the troops to go on memorial runs, support runs, gathering for a moment of silence before a fun run over the next few days. I so badly wish to participate but I can't because of my ink. What happened today hurts my heart, as a runner, as a mother, as a daughter, as a wife, as a spectator who just wants to cheer people on in that incredibly difficult last .2 miles. I ask everyone who reads this to take a moment of silence of their own in support of Boston.