Heng races in Boston Marathon
South Shore runner Scott Heng recently proved that it’s possible to have fun while running 26 miles.
Competing in the 101st Boston Marathon in April, Heng experienced first-hand the excitement and joy that is Boston.
“It’s an awesome race. There wasn’t a quarter-mile stretch of the road that didn’t have people. There were hundreds – thousands,” he said.
Heng, a 17-year veteran of the South Lake Tahoe Police Department, usually stuck to shorter competitions, like a 5 or 10K. But the urgings of a friend inspired the 41-year old to run in the Seattle Marathon last November, an officially sanctioned marathon event. Not only did the runner complete his first-ever long distance race, but he qualified for the grand-daddy of all races – Boston.
“I’d always wanted to try a marathon and never did. A friend convinced me to try,” he said. “When I went to Seattle, I knew I could go the distance but I didn’t know what to expect.”
Heng posted a time of 3-hours, 11 minutes, or 7:19 per mile – good enough in his 40-44 age group to receive an invitation for Boston. But even then, he wasn’t sure if he’d make the cross-country trip.
After a short training break, he decided to go for it. And again he posted a super time, 3:11.27, which placed him 1840th out of nearly 12,000 competitors.
With the performance came an invitation to compete next year.
And now he can’t wait to do it again.
“Anytime along the course, if you needed motivation, you’d just go to the left or right. Kids were high-fiving you all the way. And when you’d come in to one of the towns, bands would be playing and people would be lined up 10 deep, screaming and yelling,” said Heng, who remembered the crowd of fans who left a Boston-Baltimore baseball game at Fenway Park to cheer the runners. “I was a little beat up at the finish line. But then you look at all of the people and realize it’s a once-in-a-lifetime event.
“I can’t wait to do it again. I wouldn’t miss it for the world.”
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