Congrats! You’ve just finished the world’s oldest marathon! Now it’s time to celebrate.
Yet, before you head off with all your friends and family to mark this special occasion with festivities, food, and more, you’re probably wondering what you can expect at the finish line of the Boston Marathon. While it can be very similar to a lot of other big races, it never hurts to have a little knowledge about the situation before it happens. Keep reading to get a few tips!
Grab a Photo After You Cross the Boston Marathon Finish Line
Right after you cross the finish line you’re going to want to grab a photo of the backside of the finish line. Do you plan to run with your phone? If so, be sure to grab it right as you cross over the finish line.
There are usually tons of volunteers at the finish, just pass your phone off really quickly to one of them! Throw your hands in the air and keep grinning that huge grin as you smile for a photo. You’ve just crossed the Boston Marathon finish line, and now you have a photo that captures your excitement.
After you grab your photo immediate finish line photo you’ll head to an area where you will be handed a finisher’s medal. There will be official photo stations following the finisher’s medal handoff, so don’t tuck your phone away just yet or do, because the photo pros have their gear ready to capture your moment! Either way, be sure to grab a few more photos to commemorate the special day.
Food, All the Food
Food might be the last thing you want to think of post-race. Your stomach might have survived on gels alone for the past few hours and the thought of giving it something more solid at the moment might not fly.
I feel you on this, I am the same way after a race. My stomach is too churny (it’s not a word, but I’m sure you get the idea), and when I give it solid food things start to get really messed up. Instead, I try to opt for a sports drink to at least start the replenishment of my calories and get a few electrolytes in me. Then once I know my stomach is cool with the sports drink, I move on to the banana and perhaps a bagel or cookie.
The whole key is to make sure to get something into your system within 30 minutes of finishing. Preferably, this is a mix of protein and carbs, but if you can’t stomach anything huge at least start with something small.
That’s where the finish-line snacks come in handy. Typically they will have a sports drink, bananas or oranges, bagels or cookies, and other things on hand.
Keep on Walking
You probably thought the hardest part of the Boston Marathon was going to be the 26.2 mile jog from Hopkinton to Boston. Right?
The hardest part is the walk after your race is done. I didn’t measure it, but I am pretty sure the walk from the finish line to the family meeting area is about 5,245 more miles, on top of the 26.2 miles you just walked. I could be a little off with my calculation, but at the end of a marathon, it sure felt like it was that long.
The moral of the story, prepare for a little bit of a walk after you finish your race. It’s completed at a much more leisurely pace when compared to the race you just ran, but you’re going to feel a crazy sense of accomplishment when it’s done too!
Meet Up with Family
Before you run your marathon and split off from your family and friends, be sure you have a designated meeting area.
A meeting area could be as simple as meeting in the post-race family meeting area, picking a spot before the race that you can all remember. Check the Boston Marathon race guide in the days leading up to the race to figure out what the family meeting area is going to look like.
Spectators who plan to see you at the finish line area, especially those right on Boylston, are not going to be able to cross the barriers of the finish line area. They won’t be able to get to you quickly. They might be able to get to the family meeting area around the same time as you. However, it might be best to suggest your hotel as your meeting spot, especially if you parked near the finish line.
More Walking After the Boston Marathon Finish Line
Now that you’ve made it through most of the crowds to the finish line, you’re almost home free. But, before you are, you probably have to do a little more walking. Whether that is back to your hotel, or to an uber to take you home, odds are you need to walk just a little bit more.
You’re going to be super tempted to sit down and just sprawl out on any nearby curb.
Resist the urge.
Keep moving, keep walking. Keep going.
Not only is walking is key to helping you feel decent in the days following the race, but if you keep the momentum going until you reach your final destination, you’ll be better off. Truth be told, coming to a dead stop right after your race is going to cause you to stiffen up! If you’re not at your final destination, you might be stuck, requiring a small army of helpers to get you up off the ground again.
Recovery Tools Post Race
After you’ve run your race, done all your walking, your recovery isn’t done yet! You’re going to want to make sure you are starting your rehab right away. If you want a specific and customized rundown of what to do post-race, be sure to contact your running coach, health professional, or trainer for details.
But, for a few quick tips, make sure you get in an Epsom Salt Bath and get more food and hydration in you! Use a massage gun for sore muscles, but don’t use too much force, things are going to be tender right after you run.
Plus, a super important thing to do is to get out of your wet clothes, ASAP. Especially if you have challenges with circulation in any of your extremities. Maybe grab a super cozy Magic for Miles sweatshirt to help get you nice and cozy post-race!
Conclusion for Boston Marathon Finish Line Tips
There ya go! A few practical tips to help you manage the finish line area of the Boston Marathon. What tips would you add to the line-up above? If you’re reading this before the race and haven’t yet checked out the Expo at the Boston Marathon, be sure to check out this post as well.