Nothing quite like a 5am start to get you moving. It had rained heavily throughout the night and continued to do so. This was definately going to be a wet start to the run. I started pottering and packing while Richard was on porridge duty. We left Simon as long as we could as he wanted to basically get up, eat, leave and run.
Simon set off running from the runkeeper office in Boston with a bunch of the runkeeper staff, some guys from Twitter Boston and a few others. We were overwhelmed by the support. This was apt because runkeeper were a big part of what has allowed Simon to run. Simon set off from outside the offices and started running the Boston marathon route but in reverse, and on a weekday, without the benefit of closed roads, in the middle of commuter traffic. So yeah. Rough. Richard and I arranged to meet Simon, Neil and whoever was left running with him 10 miles out of the city. The plan is to meet up every 5 miles but that would have put us firmly in the city so for day 1 section 1 we figured this would be best.
The rain was really heavy, when Simon met us at the ten mile mark he got in the mini van and changed into some dry clothes. He was pretty cold so we tried to get him as warm and dry as possible before setting off again. Three of the runkeeper guys were still with them which was cool because some of them said that they would not be able to make it that far. They called an Uber car and got in to go back for a day at the office.
Alli from air bnb joined them at this point though so yet again Simon and Neil had somebody to talk to. Richard and I drove on through the pouring rain feeling slightly guilty about the how dry we were. We arrived at Wellesley and the 5 mile marker was right by a library. We took advantage of the car park and waited. We tried to make sure we had considered everything Simon and Neil might need. The weather had dried up so we were hoping it would hold off all day. Richard and I were chatting when a runner approached and asked if we were with Simon. We said yes and that was when we met Nicole.
Nicole is a runkeeper user that had heard what Simon is doing and wanted to join in. This is something Simon wants along this journey. To meet lots of people. Simon and Neil came onto sight and said they only wanted a quick stop and to be off. They met Nicole and after a quick drink and snack, away they went. It was cool to meet Nicole as she was the first person to join in that was just a regular person wanting to be a part of this mammoth feat. Again Richard and I drove off ahead to find the next rendezvous. We passed a Dunkin Donuts, actually we went in the Dunkin donuts as we thought it would be good fuel for Simon and Neil.
At the next stop Simon, Alli and Neil stopped for a bit longer. The donuts were saved as the guys wanted something savoury. We sadly said goodbye to Nicole and off Simon, Alli and Neil ran to the next stage. We really lucked out as every stop we made nearly always had a car park. Richard and I wanted. The weather had been so changeable it was crazy but those guys just powered through. As we saw them approach we noticed that they had other runners with them. 2 runners from a local running club had been running the course trying to find Simon they had joined in between stages. We refuelled the guys and they were ready for the off. This was the final 3 miles as this day should be our longest day. I decided to run the last 3 miles with them. We also kept Alli from airbnb and the local runners.
Richard drove ahead and we started pounding the pavement. It was cool to see the actual running going on and be a part of it. Up to now I had only really been in the minivan and offering food and drink to the runners. There were a cone of complications on this stretch. A diversion from the main road due to Road works. Luckily it was only for a few hundred yards. We crossed the finish line and their were a few people waiting for us. Our finish line is the Boston marathon start line which is permanently painted on the road. It was cool to have a proper finish line to cross. After speaking to some people it was time to head to our new airbnb house. Tonight it was just Me Simon and Richard at this house.
Our house host was fabulous, she is called Philomena and originally from Ireland. Despite living in the US for 19 years she had retained her accent. After Simon had an ice bath she served us tea and cookies. We chatted for some time with her, caught up with our wives, put some washing in and then left for the meal at a local restaurant we had been booked into.
Philomena came too and we met some guys from team with a vision (a group of visually impaired runners and sighted guides) . Nicole the runner from earlier in the day also came. It was a really nice meal and the conversation flowed between everybody round the table. Anybody who didn’t know any better would have no idea what had happened today, and what that was only the beginning of.
We returned to the house and were all so tired we pretty much crashed straight away despite it only being around 9.30pm. Philomena’s daughter said she would join us on the run in the morning too which was welcomed by the group as we had no idea who would be there in the morning. Off to bed, ready to tackle another day.