sssmst represents at boston marathon

“Swim Jim” Lamastra arrived back in town today from Boston, where he put down a very impressive race after a winter of nagging injuries kept him from a solid block of training. Jim’s 2:58 was the result of some disciplined pacing and years of endurance racing experience. Congrats to Jim on an excellent race! If “Run Jim” didn’t sound so dumb, you’d probably have a new nickname.

Jim took the time to write a nice race report. Here’s the first sentence: “Let me start by saying, ear plugs do not block out the snoring of Sal LaMastra!” Read on for the whole narrative.


From Jim:

Let me start by saying, ear plugs do not block out the snoring of Sal LaMastra! Also, 4 hours of sleep is plenty so long as you don’t have to swim and bike before the marathon. After my father turned the hotel room lights on at 3:30 (why 3:30 I’ll never know), I got up, ate some toast and a banana and went to the train station to catch the bus out to the start at Hopkinton. I got there around 8 AM for the 10:00 start. I layed around listening to and watching the crowd of 20,000 plus go through their pre-race rituals. While sitting there, I ate a bagels and a power bar and drank a bottle of water and gatorade. I’ve never eaten or drank this much before running in my life but the two hour wait played into that I guess. About 20 minutes prior to the gun, I made my way down to the start and talked to my fellow “corrale mates”. People are funny in this area. No one (including me) is ever in the shape they want to be in!

The weather couldn’t have been better. I was disappointed going in knowing that my longest run was somewhere between 14 and 16 miles meaning that this race would hurt. My original plan was to run it with my father in the 4 hour range but two weeks ago he fell on a training run breaking 4 ribs. This made him day to day and at the last hour decided not to dance. So, I decided to play it safe early and see what happened. The opening miles are very hard to control as it is mostly downhill for about 6 miles. I kept it very under control knowing that last year I kind of pushed too much early on and could barely take the pain of the last few miles. Anyway, I hit the first few in the 7 minute range and felt great. I did an inventory at 9 miles, felt fairly crappy and decided not to pick it up. I kept the pace just under 7 minutes per mile knowing that if things fell apart I’d still have a shot at getting under the magic 3:10 needed to re-qualify. However, the natural rolling nature of the course kept me from over exerting from 9-12 and I was able to descend that segment a bit.

At mile 13 runners cruise through Wellesley College which is about the most incredible place to run in the world. It was loud and crazy through there and I hit a 6:38 mile without much effort and decided right there that I’d go after the sub-3 mark. I had no idea if I could do it but thought that I’d be close. I hit the half around 1:30 and rolled a 6:29 mile 14. The next two miles were fairly downhill followed by the uphill 16-21 section. I figured if I could get through there relatively unscathed I might be able to push the envelope over the final 5 miles. Sure enough, I stayed well under 7’s through that section and made it up heartbreak hill feeling quite strong. My father and a couple of friends were hanging out at Boston College around the 21.5 mile mark. They motivated me to make one last charge for the sub-3 barrier. I picked up my effort and somehow never broke down. I was able to average around 6:35 from 21-26.2 and came in with 2 minutes to spare. My 5k splints ended up 21.44, 21.17, 21.15, 21.19, 20.24, 20.44, 21.30 and 20.50.

In the end, this far exceeded my expectations for the day and was my fastest Boston to date. I would say the race was about the best paced run I’ve ever put together and certainly the only reason I was able to finish strong. Next year, I’m going to try and stay healthy all winter and give it another go. I’m sure I’ll be more fit which will make me attack the course and allow me to blow up in the hills only to finish 10 minutes slower than this year. I cannot say enough about the Boston Marathon. It is everything you hear about and more! If you haven’t done it yet, you got to go. It is a race like none other!

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3 Responses

  1. Great Job Jim! I hope Sal recovers quickly and you get some sleep!!

  2. Way to go Jim! You’re still my hero.

  3. Congratulations! You are simply amazing.

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