Even for someone who spent half of the last year training and racing in the Panama sun, Patriots’ Day was not ideal for marathoning. Yet, that didn’t stop GBTC’s top female performer, Liz Ryan, from giving it her all on the trek from Hopkinton to Boylston Street.
“I was wrapping up my best year of training ever, 6 months here in Cambridge, and 6 months in the jungles of Panama. I went into the race thinking I could run a 2:43 comfortably (a two min PR for me). As soon as we left the Korean Church in Hopkinton, I knew that even running a 5 second PR would be an amazing feat. The sun was intense, and I was sweating immediately.”
Live on televisions around the country, Ryan could be easily spotted on runner’s right of just before the field of elite women took off. When asked about her moment of fame on national TV, Liz remarked,
“My hands on my hips pose while we waited for the starting gun was not me trying to play it cool, it was me trying to air out my under arms. My ideal running conditions are 40 degrees and pouring rain (…I’m irish?) so it was far from an ideal day, despite what the race announcers were saying.”
We’ll continue to think that Liz was in fact “playing it cool”, and she did everything in her power to stay cool along the course. Liz explained that she was taking a great deal of water at each station, upwards of 6-10 small cups per mile. While she did toy with the idea of dropping out before the half, Liz held strong, knowing that no matter the circumstances, she wouldn’t be content with a DNF. She also knew that her teammates in GBTC would be fighting alongside her for a top team score. The GBTC ultimately finished third in the women’s team standings, and Liz Ryan finished as the 6th American woman in 2:51:04.
“All in all, it was a great experience, and I can’t wait to really race it next year! The crowds were also so much more impressive than last year…Greater Boston TC was out in full force with our signature giant Tom Derderian heads. Apparently my dad biked up and down all the Newton hills on the carriage road as I ran it. He was yelling at me for 6 miles straight, while biking those hills. At the end of the day, he really deserves the pat on the back.”