Blog #90

Okay folks, sorry that this post Boston post has taken so long to come out. It was a crazy day and it has taken me a while to wrap my head around everything that happened and how to approach writing about it. On one hand I had the most fun race of my life, and then there was the bombing events which really made the race seem insignificant.

I lack the writing skills and vocabulary to accurately express my thoughts and feelings on these events. My thoughts and love go out to all those whom were hurt in these attacks. Such horrible senseless actions.

The bombing attacks on Boston were horrifying. It is heartbreaking whenever there is a senseless attack on the innocent public, and this particular event hit especially close to home. I am saddened, and to be honest, kinda rocked by what happened. You never even consider something like this would happen. The marathon is a celebration, it’s an event when people from all over the world come together as one. The marathon gives no heed to sex, colour or creed, we are all just runners trying to conquer that damn 42.2km grind. I have stated many times before that the reason I love this sport is because there is such a positive vibe in the air at these events, an overwhelming sense of joy and love, it’s awesome.

I hate that this happened, I am an optimist through and through. I will always see the bright side. Shit like this can happen and it can rock you to your very core. You feel helpless, you do not know how to process the emotions. Sadness, frustration and anger. How can humanity stoop so low? How can someone target children and families? How can this happen? With the lowest of the low though you can also see the power of good, and the resiliency of the human spirit.

Those bombs went off and for a brief moment all of those positive feelings were gone, replaced by fear and uncertainty. Those feelings lasted for only a brief instance though, and over the course of this past week the running community has come back and responded in the only way it knows how. We came together, we helped each other and we pushed on. I love being a runner and I love this community and we will only become closer and stronger.

I also have such a huge amount of love and respect for the city of Boston. I was there for a few days before the race and I fell in love with the place. Not only is that city beautiful physically, the people there are amazing as well. They were so accommodating and open to all of us whom came in for the race. Boston loves their marathon. It is a proud city, and clearly one that you do not want to mess with! That shit went down and they immediately stepped up in every way possible. They took care of their wounded and then did some serious Jack Bauer type stuff to apprehend those responsible.

I’ll briefly touch on my personal experience with the events;

When it happened I was in the Hotel eating lunch with Pete and Kristin, our hotel was right near the finish, we heard the explosions. There was a lot of confusion and uncertainly when it first happened. The elite committee did an excellent job in handling the situation. They made sure we were all safe, they tried their best to keep us up to date and informed and they remained calm and collected the whole time. This was a bunch of Boston locals whom must had been going through inner turmoil of their own. They put on a brave face and they took care of their guests. So much respect to the John Hancock team, what an amazing group.

My first thoughts while all this was going on were of my family and loved ones. Pretty much everyone just wanted to make sure their loved ones were okay, they wanted to make sure their families knew they were alright, it was upsetting. Really puts things in perspective though, shit can go down in a hurry folks. Make sure you have your priorities sorted. There is nothing more important in this world than those you love.

Sorry, I’m kinda gushing and babbling on here, it was an emotional week man.

Wanna hear a bit about the actual race? Well I’m gonna cop out here. for my pre-race thoughts check this out:


Okay, and then this is how the race went;


This part was awesome


This was not so awesome


This plain sucked. My legs have never seized so badly, that last 4miles hurt!

At least I could hobble down to the bar after. Pete and Kristin were absolutely amazing, I love my team.

For post race thoughts check these out;

or here;

Post Race

Yeah, huge cop out on my behalf. If you don’t wanna watch those videos here’s a brief synopsis. Started out and just got in a rhythm. Wanted to be smooth and controlled, and I was, just happened that smooth and controlled put me in the lead! Africans roll by…hard! Then they slow down…a lot! Back in the lead! Leading the Boston Marathon past Wellesley College; Highlight of my running career, unbelievable! Hit the newton hills, feeling those down hills! Crest heartbreak hill…Calfs going…going…gone! Quads go next…hobble home last few miles. Legs have never been this beat up! Different kind of feeling than previous marathons. Energy levels and fueling was great, just no legs left. 2:15, 11th place.  Finish, fall over, moan and groan, recover…all in a days work. Most fun and exhilarating race of my career. Round 2 next year Boston!

Okay, well this blog was weird. Sorry about that.

I also wanna say thanks so much to all of you whom have continued to support me. I received so many messages of love and support from so many people after this race, it was very humbling and heart warming. Sorry if I could not respond to everyone, but I want you to know that it means a lot. Thanks so much guys.

Huge thanks to everyone involved with putting on the event, it takes an army to put on an event of such magnitude. And never have I seen it pulled off so efficiently and with such professionalism. Special shout out to the John Hancock elite squad, Mary Kate, Patrick and the whole crew were unbelievable hosts.

Love my Coach Pete and Sister Kristin, they put up with my shit for 2months and never stopped supporting and believing in me. No words to describe how much these two mean to me.

Okay, this was a sappy ass blog. I’m gonna go drink some beer and get in trouble. Hopefully next post I will have a funny story involving hobos and firecrackers.

Peace out kids!


Apr 2013


COMMENTS 26 Comments

26 Responses to “Blog #90”

  1. PR says:

    You’re a class act Mr. Watson. Glad to have seen you in action and look forward to reading about your future exploits.

  2. cindy says:

    it was a weird day, i was super happy to hear how awesome you did and then heard the stories about what happened, was glad to hear you were ok! thanks for writing that post, i’m sure it wasn’t easy to have experienced that. boston 2014!!

    • rob says:

      Thanks Cindy, it sure was the strangest day in my life. Gotta keep pushing on, and Boston 2014 seems like something good to push towards! Cheers.

  3. Nicole says:

    Watched the race live- you sure put Canada on the map Robin. Super proud of your top 11 finish. I ran Boston in 2010 and even though I was warned of the downhills they still got the best of my quads, not sure how you managed a 2:15 finish despite the pain. Look forward to meeting you at the 10km in Ottawa!

    • rob says:

      Thanks so much Nicole, that course sure is a meat grinder eh!? Holy moly, legs are still effed.
      See ya in Ottawa!

  4. Kate Whitfield says:

    Well put, Rob. I enjoyed reading your perspective – it definitely opened my eyes regarding the experience in Boston as well as your experiences with running at a more general sense. Thanks for sharing!

  5. Jeff says:

    I live right near the 8km, but I couldn’t be there. I saw on the feed that you were leading so I had my mom cheer for you! Congrats on a great race!

    • rob says:

      Thanks man, I think I heard her! was she the one saying “go!” rad. Cheers Jeff, you live in a wonderful city!

  6. Anon says:

    Good job!!!!

  7. Fan of RW says:

    I kept my kid home from School to watch the race and it was amazing seeing you out front rocking the FFTF or rocking your own game plan….I would say There Is A New Sheriff In Town….Please run something flat in the fall and in Ontario! You Did The RW fan club proud bro.

    • rob says:

      Hey man, thanks so much. Flat and fast is certainly the plan for the next one. We’ll see where that takes us! Really dig the continued support.

  8. Sherlock says:

    Hullo, Watson. Smashing job you did at the race. I was rather pleased to see you up front for so much camera time. I believe your confidence is waxing with every race and training revolution. Being in the lead pack leads to victories, ol’ boy. Onward to Rio!

  9. Rob C says:

    I gotta say I love hearing a first time Boston runner recount their experience. Very few get it right on the first go round. It’ll be Round 4 for me in ’14. See ya there!

    • rob says:

      Hey Rob C, certainly a very unique racing experience. I can totally see what you are talking about. Thanks for the support. Best of luck with your training!

  10. Anonymous says:

    Dear Rob – great freakin’ race dude – watching you gap the pack at 25k was effin’ amazing!

    Dear fellow hobby-jogging brothers and sisters – I love ya’ll – you’re all BAMFs – let’s keep supportin’ each other

    Dear World – the finishing chute of a marathon is an amazing place – colour, creed, sexual orientation, religious/political allegiance doesn’t mean shit at 42k – its ordinary folks, stripped to their core, doing an extraordinary thing – & supporting and helping each other along the way. Surely what every culture should strive for. So here’s my suggestion – if you’ve got a beef with someone – go train distance and run a race with them. I’m certain you’ll find that, at our core, we’re all the same and all want the same things. I swear, if N Korea and S Korea run a marathon together, they’ll be best buds at the finish

    Dear Boston – I love ya – and I’ll see you soon!

    • rob says:

      Nice man, I dig it. We’re all a family and I’m happy to call ya my brother. Happy training and best of luck. Cheers.

  11. MK says:

    Way to run your race…nice reflection. Recover well and see you back in Boston soon.

  12. Well done, sir! I like to think our trot in the cemetery this past February in Toronto was instrumental in you leading most of the race. You’re welcome. Looking forward to the next session.

    Nah f’real that was fun, and it set me up for a 10km peebee last Sunday and hopefully another half marathon peebee in a few weeks. I watched the race from home and was literally yelling at my computer screen when you were still up there beyond 23km. Surely you heard me?

    Either way, good on ya dude! Keep us updated on the ol quads and hobos and firecrackers. Or hookers. Mostly hookers.


  13. jaliet says:

    Hi Rob,
    I need some training advice. Since you are not blogging, maybe you can indulge me.
    I am an amateur runner. Doing 21k but will jump to 42k next year. My PB last year for 21K was 1:37. I am targeting 1:30 this year. Now, last year, I did 80K per week runs for about a month and occasional 100k a week. My brother did a max of 60k per week (mostly 40K per week) and did the same race in 1:35.
    I decided maybe I was running too much and in the process became slow because I was never able to hit my cylinders because I was often tired.
    So this year, I decided to focus on quality – run less but hard and rest completely. Repeat. So I introduced 32K long run (every 14 days) to help me with weight loss (I am 5 11″ weighing 80Kgs) and to give me strong legs. Otherwise, every week I do a one hour tempo on Tuesday and an interval on Thursday then hillwork on Sundays when am not doing 32K. My first 32K was in March 2013 and I completed it in 3:15. April had several interruptions because of the rain but now I am doing the 32K in 2:45. And my tempo run speeds are getting better. But I am wondering:
    Is 32K too long for my long runs since I am targeting 21K?
    How come you dont do long runs in your training? I just see blocks of intervals. Explain that to me please.

    • rob says:

      Hey Jacob,
      First off, congrats on the 1:37, that is a solid result.
      Ok, these are just my thoughts, so take it for what it is. I am not an awesome coach, I have someone else take care of that side of things;)
      I think that maybe you were tired from the increase of volume for your last cycle. If you only hit the 80-100km for one month than odds are that it tired you out. But do not back off! The bump in volume will tire you out initially. You need to hit that level consistently for several months to allow your body to adapt and recover adequately.
      Maybe that was too much volume for that particular cycle, but keep the volume high over time and you will see big gains. Keep doing it!
      I believe that the foundation and most important part of any training regime is a solid base of big volume. You can do amazing things off of just being strong and being able to grind.
      Your training looks good, do that 32km run, it’s awesome both mentally and physically. If you wanna do well in the marathon the long run is the most important thing you will do.
      You said that I don’t do any long runs, that is not the case at all. They just often come in the form of a workout. I do a long hard progression run pretty much every week. Including my warm-up and cool down I will be doing a 38-42km run at least 6 times in a 10week build up.
      Sorry, that was just a rushed response. Hope all is well with this cycle, keep rolling my man. On Ward to 1:29:59!

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