The voice of runnerhood

17 Apr

After my initial thoughts on the events in Boston on Monday, I refrained from writing yesterday. Partly because I felt a day of silence was appropriate and partly because I simply just didn’t know what else to say. Of course, words are hard to form when we bear witness to such pain and brutality.

In the little free time I have had in the past two days, I have pored over the images and information that have been flooding our awareness. I’ve been trying to grab onto the thoughts that are swirling around in my brain and string them together in way that makes sense.

Through reading these news stories, articles, and blogs since the events unfolded, it is evident that runners have a powerful voice and it is being heard loud and clear. I am inspired by individuals who have somehow found the words to accurately capture the full spectrum of emotions felt on Marathon Monday. From enthusiasm, joy and pride to fear, disbelief and sorrow. I have been moved to tears by these narratives and reflections. Beautiful words found and formed within the storm of reactions. So many runner voices have come forward – Boston marathoners past, present, and “would-have been,” spectators, those with friends or family at the race, and those present purely in spirit and runnerhood. There are multiple movements to show support through tribute runs (both organized and individual), the wearing of race shirts in solidarity, prayer chains, donation funds, and buttons, stickers and ribbons. These movements are growing rapidly.

The voice of runnerhood is strong and it’s getting louder.

We are grieving, but we are not alone. This community, this family, is rallying together with open arms and hopeful hearts. It’s not fully understood yet how this moment in time will change future races, but one thing for certain is that we will run with more purpose and determination than ever.


Early Tuesday morning, I had intended to go out for a tribute run. For reasons I can’t explain here, that didn’t happen. Instead, I ran 2.62 miles of silence at sunrise this morning with a race shirt on and thoughts of Boston playing in my mind. Despite the sound of birds chirping happily and the spring sunlight brightening the horizon, I wrestled to find peace. I have a feeling that will be the case for many runs to come.


These posts are a few among many that have really spoken to me the past two days:

Race Report | 2013 Boston Marathon by Meg Runner Girl

Love. Strength. Boston. by Pavement Runner

In Praise of Boston by Mungerruns

Boston – I’m Speechless by STUFTMama

Runners United for Boston by Road Runner Girl

A couple of ways to help:

#RunChat stands with Boston

Boston Marathon Explosions: How You Can Help

Feel free to share your thoughts here or link to an article or blog post that moved you. 


4 Responses to “The voice of runnerhood”

  1. Britt @ BrittsRunningStyle April 18, 2013 at 11:28 am #

    Beautifully written 🙂 At least you did get the miles in even if it wasn’t on Tuesday. There were a lot of posts that I read that brought me to tears as well. Such an awful event.

    • Nikki April 18, 2013 at 4:32 pm #

      Thank you, Britt. It’s hard to look at everything that’s being written or the images that are being posted. I have to keep walking away from it.

  2. olivetorun April 18, 2013 at 2:59 pm #

    I read a lot of the same posts and they were all very touching! Thanks for sharing!

  3. Diana April 18, 2013 at 5:15 pm #

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