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Rant: Boston charity runners (who pretend they qualify) = lame
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Am I the only one who finds Boston Marathon charity runners to be incredibly lame when they brag about how they're "running Boston" (implying that they qualified when they didn't) and fail to put the charity they're (supposedly) supporting in the spotlight?

I was just meeting with a fellow who brought up running Boston this weekend, how he was all pumped having just run a PR half-marathon, how he's trained so hard for this, etc. The build-up was all about him, his running performance, IT WAS ALL ABOUT HIM, etc. My colleague who was with me was like "wow, what an accomplishment!" and he was all "yeah, thanks" and basking in his glory.

After the meeting I looked up his race results. His recent half-marathon PR was ~2:20. I mean, give me a break! That's not even a <10 minute mile. He's in no position to be bragging about PRs IN THE CONTEXT OF a race that almost every will assume you qualified for by running a "fast" marathon. I have several friends who have been trying to run Boston for years, working there asses off. To them, qualifying is their grail athletic achievement. People gloating about running Boston when they can't even run break a 4 hours is a damn joke. It cheapens the achievement for others.

Next time I meet someone who is "running Boston" without volunteering that they're "running Boston as a charity runner" and put front-and-center what charity they're supporting rather than their own fake athletic achievements, I'm going to ask what their qualifying time was. If they are charity runners, I want them to know I haven't been duped by their fake self-promotion.

Edit: Part of this rant is, I'm just sick of this Instagram-era self-promoting fakeness. Maybe it has nothing to do with Boston. If I'm completely missing something let me know.

Edit 2: If someone tells me they're running Boston for a charity, I'd offer to support their charity. I don't object to charity running per-say, but charity runners pretending (or misleading you into thinking they qualified).
Last edited by: wintershade: Apr 15, 19 11:34
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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Why do you care about what other people do?

If qualifying for Boston is the important thing to you, then you can simply "not" sign up to get in via charity.

I have yet to meet anyone running on a charity bib that hasn't been up front about it. I even just donated to someone's charity bib this morning to make sure she could run on Monday...

And yes I am running on Monday. And no I don't give a crap that somewhere, behind me, is a wave of people who raised money to get in.

Edit to add: whenever I meet someone who says they are running Boston, instead of asking what their qualifying time is, I ask them what race they qualified at. Not because I am trying to sniff out if they are running on a charity bib, but because I am always curious. I have had a handful of people answer straight up that they are running with a charity bib - they weren't trying to hide that fact.
Last edited by: g_lev: Apr 12, 19 11:55
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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What someone else does "cheapens" your accomplishment only if you allow it to do so. That choice is yours.

Honestly, who else besides your wife and kids (and maybe even then) gives two fucks about you doing a marathon (yes, even Boston)?
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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Yeah, you're completely missing something. Namely that without the tens of millions of dollars that these runners raise every year, the city wouldn't give two shits about the event anymore.

It doesn't cheapen shit. The vast majority of the field qualifies. The charity field is a staple of the event. Heaven fuck forbid that you somehow feel slighted that this part of the field exists when it's incredibly important to the fabric of the event. Learn some history of the race and why those bibs exist.

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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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It bothered me for the first years of running that majority of marathon finishers in all marathons don't even like running or exercising all that much. For them it's some kind of life achievement. Or they're doing it for something, like raise money or awareness or for some ill relatives. I found it strange and counterintuitive.

But nowadays I try not to think about other people much. I cannot even reach my own personal athletic goals, I simply cannot help other people.
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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Wow, early responders are cranky.

I get the complaint. I think it's crappy when charity runners talk of "running Boston" and accept all those accolades from folks who now assume they're good runners. In reality they're training to finish their first marathon and managed to come up with the cash. That's shitty behavior.

However, I've rarely seen this. Once actually. And the guy was a douche anyway, so not surprising.

I've never actually seen any other charity runner bring it up, other than to do fund raising, or if they're asked why they aren't going to be at work that day. My local paper recently did a profile on a guy running Monday, and one of the first lines in the interview was him pointing out how he's not a great runner but really wanted to raise money for whatever charity and though it would be a great challenge for him. Good stuff all around actually. That's the norm, in my experience.

Long story short, OP has a good point, I think. It just doesn't happen very often.
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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I live in the Boston area and I know literally dozens of people who have run the marathon for charities, myself included. I also know several people who have or are capable of qualifying, and still chose to run for a charity. On behalf of all of us, get the fuck over yourself.

People get excited about running Boston because of the history and the hype that go along with the race, and that's exactly what makes it a great fundraising venue for charities. That said, I don't know anyone who has hidden behind their charity bib or consciously tried to make other think they qualified when they didn't. Are those people out there? Probably. Maybe you just met one of them. But it's pretty ignorant to make that generalization about everyone who runs Boston for a charity.

And just so you can rest easy, I've never BQ'd or suggested to anyone that I have. I ran Boston with a charity bib in 3:26. My marathon PR is 3:18 and my half PR is 1:27.
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [rrheisler] [ In reply to ]
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rrheisler wrote:
Yeah, you're completely missing something. Namely that without the tens of millions of dollars that these runners raise every year, the city wouldn't give two shits about the event anymore.

It doesn't cheapen shit. The vast majority of the field qualifies. The charity field is a staple of the event. Heaven fuck forbid that you somehow feel slighted that this part of the field exists when it's incredibly important to the fabric of the event. Learn some history of the race and why those bibs exist.

You raise a good point. Though what if you made qualifiers also raise some money? So everyone both has to qualify and raise money for a charity of their choice?

I personally don't feel slighted by the fact that there are charity runners. I just feel annoyed by people who "brag" about running Boston in a way that puts themselves and their supposed athletic accomplishment front and center, rather than the charity they're supporting. For example, the CEO I spoke with today could have said "I'm running Boston to raise awareness of XYZ issue." My reaction to that would have been, "cool, now there's a stand-up guy, working hard to support a cause."
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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The charities are for the kids and less fortunate people.

The dick of the day award goes to.....YOU! lol
Last edited by: Twinkie: Apr 12, 19 12:26
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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The whole point is people choose to do the event on behalf of the charity of choice, versus other events that it is a known quantity that you must fundraise (or pay up severely) to do the event (e.g., The Prouty, which benefits the Norris Cancer Center at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center). The whole point is that you're making the choice to fundraise.

I frankly couldn't give two shits about how people get in to run Boston. I won't do it again until I qualify for it (my one run of it, I got in on a sponsor bib). I don't care how people talk about it because, again, whether they qualified or they fundraised (news flash - it's really, really hard to meet those minimums), they did some serious work to get there.

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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [cujo] [ In reply to ]
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cujo wrote:

Long story short, OP has a good point, I think. It just doesn't happen very often.

If the point is "running Boston on a charity bib and not being up front about that fact is a douche move" then sure I can agree with that. That is not how I read the OP. It sounded to me like he was saying that charity runners shouldn't ever be there, and uses the one douchey guy as an example.
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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wintershade wrote:
rrheisler wrote:
Yeah, you're completely missing something. Namely that without the tens of millions of dollars that these runners raise every year, the city wouldn't give two shits about the event anymore.

It doesn't cheapen shit. The vast majority of the field qualifies. The charity field is a staple of the event. Heaven fuck forbid that you somehow feel slighted that this part of the field exists when it's incredibly important to the fabric of the event. Learn some history of the race and why those bibs exist.


You raise a good point. Though what if you made qualifiers also raise some money? So everyone both has to qualify and raise money for a charity of their choice?

I personally don't feel slighted by the fact that there are charity runners. I just feel annoyed by people who "brag" about running Boston in a way that puts themselves and their supposed athletic accomplishment front and center, rather than the charity they're supporting. For example, the CEO I spoke with today could have said "I'm running Boston to raise awareness of XYZ issue." My reaction to that would have been, "cool, now there's a stand-up guy, working hard to support a cause."

So basically your issue is with people who are dickbags. Not with people running Boston on a charity bib. So why this thread?
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [g_lev] [ In reply to ]
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Yeah, I read it as "people who suck actually do suck", not "charity runners suck". If it's the latter, OP is a douche too.
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [rrheisler] [ In reply to ]
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rrheisler wrote:
I don't care how people talk about it because, again, whether they qualified or they fundraised (news flash - it's really, really hard to meet those minimums), they did some serious work to get there.

This is a good point. Personally, I would literally never be capable of running on a charity bib. I am not good at asking people for money. No way would I ever be comfortable asking people to help me generate THAT much money. It's not a personality trait I have. But for the people that can do it? It's STILL hard work to get that much money raised.

Running my BQ, by comparison, was a cakewalk when weighed against the work I would have to do to raise enough money for a charity bib.
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [rrheisler] [ In reply to ]
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Well said. I qualified and ran it in 2017 and can't imagine caring that there are charity runners and how they might be portraying themselves.
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [cujo] [ In reply to ]
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cujo wrote:
Yeah, I read it as "people who suck actually do suck", not "charity runners suck". If it's the latter, OP is a douche too.

I think it was both: sucky people suck, but it also seemed that he was saying charity runners suck because they took spots that could have been for qualifiers.

I may have misinterpreted as often happens with the interwebs.
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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wintershade wrote:
Am I the only one who finds Boston Marathon charity runners to be incredibly lame, especially when they brag about how they're "running Boston"?

I was just meeting with a cocksure start-up CEO who brought up running Boston this weekend, how he was all pumped having just run a PR half-marathon, etc. My colleague who was with me was like "wow, what an accomplishment!" and he was all "yeah, thanks!"

After the meeting I look up his race results. His half-marathon PR was ~2:20. I mean, give me a break! That's not even a <10 minute mile. If I ran a half marathon that slow, I think I'd injure myself. I ran a faster half-marathon than that when I was a hairless-nutsacked 13 y/o after training for 8 weeks with a free Hal Higdon plan.

I have several friends who have been trying to run Boston for years, working there asses off. To them, qualifying is their grail athletic achievement. People gloating about running Boston when they can't even run break a 4 hours is a damn joke. It cheapens the race for others.

Next time I meet someone who is "running Boston" without volunteering that they're "running Boston as a charity runner" and put front-and-center what charity they're supporting rather than their own fake athletic achievements, I'm going to ask what their qualifying time was. If they are charity runners, I want them to know I haven't been duped by their fake self-promotion.

Part of this rant is, I'm just sick of this Instagram-era self-promoting fakeness. Maybe it has nothing to do with Boston. If I'm completely missing something let me know.


So I guess you are pretty upset that the 7 time NASCAR Champ, 1/2 marathoner, triathlete is racing Boston?

The announcers have been talking about it the last few races so a LOT of people know he is racing and he has never done a marathon.

He did take 15'th place at the Daytona 13.1 before winning the clash later that day.
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [rrheisler] [ In reply to ]
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rrheisler wrote:
Yeah, you're completely missing something. Namely that without the tens of millions of dollars that these runners raise every year, the city wouldn't give two shits about the event anymore.

It doesn't cheapen shit. The vast majority of the field qualifies. The charity field is a staple of the event. Heaven fuck forbid that you somehow feel slighted that this part of the field exists when it's incredibly important to the fabric of the event. Learn some history of the race and why those bibs exist.

I think you meant to say "without the 200 Million dollars in economic stimulus to the area"
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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Same kind of thing happens with Kona, btw.

There is a lot doucheeness around Boston, both among qualifiers and charity runners. Look at all the peacocks strutting around with their Adidas jackets, past year shirts, etc. A large contingent of triathletes at the expo also put on their IM gear. A lot of people feel the need to glorify themselves to others.
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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Wow. Yeah raising money for less fortunate people is so fake.

I guess we will all take note of your fakeness for running Boston without raising a single dime for charity.
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [HandHeartCrown] [ In reply to ]
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Participation in the Marathon has been on the upswing ever since the official charity program started in 1989. They go hand in hand with one another.

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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [cujo] [ In reply to ]
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cujo wrote:
Yeah, I read it as "people who suck actually do suck", not "charity runners suck". If it's the latter, OP is a douche too.

I've clarified my post somewhat, but maybe that's what this all comes down to. People who suck, are sucky people. I'm just so sick of the impostor syndrome that is rife in Silicon Valley, and maybe everywhere. Just people relentlessly self-promoting by exaggerating their accomplishments.

If you're a charity runner, go ahead, brag about how hard you worked to raise so much money. That's fine. But don't try to regale me with stories about your recent 13.1 PR.

Not to say that IM doesn't attract a ton of douche bags.... but I've never met someone who has done Kona as a lottery entry and omitted the fact that they were a lottery entry. And I've met many lottery entrants. They always say things like "I got so lucky, I'd never be able to qualify. I'm so grateful I got to experience the race." Yet with Boston charity runners, I've NEVER once met someone whose told me they were a charity runner, and I'm pretty damn sure I know dozens of them but you have to pry it out of them.

Posers just suck. Okay, my rant is over. I need to go think about something happy now.
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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You know what's wonderful about the phrase "PR?"

It stands for personal record.

They want to brag about their 13.1 PR that barely broke 2:30? Who the fuck am I to belittle that? I mean, seriously. All of your posts in this thread thus far have belonged over here: https://forum.slowtwitch.com/...%20like%20a#p1566945

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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [Poon] [ In reply to ]
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Poon wrote:
There is a lot doucheeness around Boston, both among qualifiers and charity runners. Look at all the peacocks strutting around with their Adidas jackets, past year shirts, etc. A large contingent of triathletes at the expo also put on their IM gear. A lot of people feel the need to glorify themselves to others.

I don't wear my Boston jacket that often, but when I do I feel a sense of pride. Well, now I stand corrected. I'll just have to burn the jacket and never wear any kind of race gear again since it apparently marks me as a douche. I sincerely apologize if you ever saw me being a douche in my jacket, I really didn't know any better. But then again, all those charity runners (none of whom has ever misrepresented how they got in to me) are apparently douches too. So I guess I have a lot of company.

Luckily, we have people like you (who could never possibly be douches) to perform a public service and set us straight.
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Re: Rant: Boston charity runners = lame [rrheisler] [ In reply to ]
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rrheisler wrote:
Participation in the Marathon has been on the upswing ever since the official charity program started in 1989. They go hand in hand with one another.


I wasn't familiar that 1) Boston had a large contingent of Charity Runners and 2) These runners race a ton of money.

This post, has informed me that there is some serious money being donated by a handful of runners annually from the Boston marathon. Very impressive indeed!

https://www.boston.com/...rathon-charity-teams

The 2018 charity runners raised $19.2 million, according to a July press release by the B.A.A. Combined with other fundraising, including the John Hancock Non-Profit Program, the 2018 Boston Marathon raised a total of $36.6 million.
All participating charities focus on health, fitness, and the local community, with causes ranging from Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital’s research initiatives to the Semper Fi Fund, which provides assistance to Armed Forces injured in combat after 9/11.
Last edited by: wetswimmer99: Apr 12, 19 18:17
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