Boston Marathon Roll Call: Olivier Girault

Olivier's debut marathon and BQ was Philadelphia in 2016, in a time of 2:58:32

Olivier's debut marathon and BQ was Philadelphia in 2016, in a time of 2:58:32

What does running your first Boston mean to you?
Just super excited. I used to live in Boston (but never went to cheer for the race 😔), so it will be nice to be back for this landmark race.

What race did you achieve your BQ time at? How many attempts did you make before you achieved your BQ?
I did BQ in Philadelphia in 2016. This was actually my first marathon (and only one to this date): I'm quite excited about running 26.2 miles again!

Is your preparation for Boston different than the race your BQ race? Overall how would you rate your training? Was there a single workout or tuneup race where you thought, “Bring on Boston!” or conversely, “Oh my god I’m not ready for this!”
My training was relatively similar to what I did for Philly : general advice and training plan from Hal Higdon's book Marathon. I just tweaked it a bit with coach Mike's speed work and some core exercises. Definitely ready for it, training has been way too long! I feel pretty good after my PR during the NYC Half.

Did you do any specific workouts to prepare you for downhill start or the Newton hills in the second half?
Harlem hills, up and down and up and down and...


Love it or hate it: Are you buying the jacket?

What are you looking forward to the most about the race?
That ugly Citgo sign

What are you dreading the most about the race?
Getting injured during the race and not being able to make it to the end.

Is this going to be a PR attempt?
Of course!

Boston is a notoriously tricky course due to the placement of the hills. Not having run the full course, do you plan on banking time on the downhills in the first half knowing that you’ll slow on the hills? Or do you bank energy in the first half to try and attack the hills?
Part of me hates the pain while running, so usually I don't push too much at the beginning... But we'll see if I can stick to the plan!

Hypothetically, you struggle up the Newton hills and know the FRNY cheer section is going to be at the base of the toughest one: Heartbreak Hill. Do you avoid them in shame and jump on the sidewalk to disguise yourself as a power-walking spectator, or do you make a bee-line straight toward them to throw high-fives and feed off their energy to get you up the hill?
I would stop and beg for food...

Oliver at the finish line of Philadelphia in 2016

Oliver at the finish line of Philadelphia in 2016

What are your strengths and weaknesses as a runner, and how do you think that will factor into the Boston course?
I like cold weather. Fingers crossed.

I double dare you: predict your time!

What’s the first beer you’ll have after the race?
Sam Adams ? 🙃

I apologize for ripping this off from the NBR blog, but in your head what celebrity do you think you resemble most when you’re running?
Quasimodo (all those race pictures are sooo bad)

Steven Waldon