Boston Marathon Roll Call: Chris Choi

Because he's made such a name for himself as one of the club's fastest Ironman triathletes, you might be forgiven if you didn't realize that he was also the first New York Front Runner to cross the finish line at Boston in 2017. Find out what inspires the 2016 FRNY Multisport Athlete of the Year, his preparation for 2018, and his strategy for conquering the course a second time!

 Chris Choi at the 2017 Boston Marathon.  Photo by Ben Ko .

Chris Choi at the 2017 Boston Marathon. Photo by Ben Ko.

How many times have you run Boston? Once

What was your first year running Boston? 2017

What was your first experience like? PR? PW? Did you BQ at Boston or did it humble you and inspire you to seek out revenge? I was not prepared for the experience and emotional rollercoaster I had at Boston.  The energy from the spectators was unbelievable and so inspiring.  I must give props to the cheer zone at Wellesley College. All I wanted to do was high five everyone.  I left my first Boston marathon with feelings of life, love, and gratitude.  Performance wise, I shocked myself with another BQ with a 2:56:42.  With that said, who wouldn't want to go back for some revenge after training so hard and so many miles in unforgiving winter weather.

Why do you keep coming back? Is there something special about the race that keeps you coming for more, or are you just a serial marathoner? I keep coming back for the marathon jackets.

Is your preparation for the 2018 race different than previous Boston Marathons? 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!” This years training is very different than last years.  Last year, my winter training was kept indoors because I was trying to acclimate myself to the heat due to some hot weather races I had following Boston.  Also, I had just raced an Ironman 70.3 in Texas just 2 weeks prior to Boston, so I was trying to peak 2x in one month and keep my legs as fresh as possible. It was a challenge.  I am really really really excited for this year because I am going into Boston fresh and as my first race of 2018.  I have kept all of my training outdoors and run focused with plenty of hills. I realized that I was ready for Boston on Friday when I finished my last 30 mile training run.  I feel great!

What are you looking forward to the most about the race? Seeing all of my friends that I only see at races and wearing my new racing flats that should be arriving any day now.

What are you dreading the most about the race? The early wake up call and getting to the start line.  After that, the fun begins.

Is this going to be a PR attempt? YES!

What’s your strategy for April 16? I usually don't run aggressive in endurance races.  I have always paced my races pretty consistently with a comfortable 6:40ish pace.  I really want to push it a bit this time and see what happens. 

I double dare you: predict your time! I'm not ready to talk about my goal time.  How dare you. lol

 Holy quads! Photo by Nevin Cohen.

Holy quads! Photo by Nevin Cohen.

What words of advice do you have for first-time Boston runners? Have Fun and take time to enjoy the experience!

In two weeks time you will cross the finish line and think, “NEVER AGAIN!” Be honest — will you run this race again? It really is hard to say no to Boston and I am always so grateful to have the opportunity to be doing this, so it is really hard for me to imagine saying "NEVER AGAIN!"..  My body might say otherwise for a brief moment.

Which course is harder and why: New York or Boston? Hands down New York is the hardest and arguably the best marathon in the world :-).  I am not biased, I swear.  

What’s the first beer you’ll have after the race? I love my IPA.

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? Taylor Swift from the "Look What You Made Me Do" music video.  

Steven Waldon