Summer Sanders set to take Boston

Summer Sanders

After hour upon hour on the treadmill, Summer Sanders is ready to hit the Boston streets.

Summer Sanders shares her prerace tips and feelings as she gears up for the Boston Marathon this Monday. This isn’t her first 26.2, but she’s been dreaming of this race for so long that it almost feels like she’s starting for the first time. Check back after the race to find out more about Summer’s run.

Just like everyone else, I have been fighting a cold, so this was my week to overload on vitamins. From Zicam to Emergen-C to pure vitamin C to probiotics, I took it all. I also tried to teach the kids to keep their germs to themselves for once!

It can’t hurt that I’ve been drinking tons of water this week. I’m definitely hydrated, and I’m so excited about getting to Boston and seeing my mom! She’s flying out to support me and to celebrate her birthday. We always get giddy together, like college girlfriends.

Summer Sanders

In addition to the 26.2 miles, one of Summer Sanders' biggest challenges in Boston is staying strong during her separation from her kids.

I had the same challenges training for this race as I did when I was preparing for Disney’s Princess Half Marathon in February: weather and nutrition. My last long run was so cold -- it was about 17 degrees -- that the tap water in my bottle was practically freezing when I finished! It even snowed this week at home (Park City, Utah), so I was glad to be in my taper phase.

I always wonder if I should’ve done more, trained harder with more tempos or additional speed work. Don’t we all? But at this point, I have to trust everything I did and remember all those long runs on the treadmill. People would look at me like I was crazy at the gym when I was on that treadmill for more than two hours. I was also watching Harry Potter movies, which I wanted to preview before my kids, Skye, almost 7, and Spider, 5, saw them. Lucky for me, they were long and distracting, so I barely knew I was running. Someone could’ve screamed “fire” next to me, and I wouldn’t have known. I was in the zone!

This race means even more to me because I’m raising money for Right To Play so that kids can find their place in life through sports. For once, I was the one who sent an email to my friends and family this week to ask for their support. I’m usually the one on the receiving end of those messages. I know I’m not going to run Boston every year, so my friends know this is a huge moment for me.

I’ll have my mommy pangs about the kids, but we’ll use FaceTime to stay in touch. We’ll try our usual trick, which is having dinner “together” by using our iPads. It feels so real that I’ll be telling Spider to sit down at the table, and he’ll be looking around like I’m in the room! I’ve also prepared myself not to be disappointed if we don’t find a perfect time to chat. This is such a big moment for me, but my kids have their lives and activities at home.

In the meantime, I know I have my sneakers and my jog bra packed, the real necessities. I’ve also brought some KIND bars, which are my new go-to snack whenever I travel. I need the carbs, fiber and protein, and I feel good supporting a company that gives back.

Of course, I’m planning for my next half-marathon even before I cross that finish line in Boston. I already have a hometown relay, called Running with Ed, on my calendar with my girlfriends for May 18.

I called one of my running girlfriends for her last-minute advice, and she told me not to shop at Copley on Saturday. I know that around Mile 20 I have Heartbreak Hill to climb!

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