Runners from around the area powered through some wet and soggy weather to complete the 124th Boston Marathon virtually.
The event usually draws in roughly 30,000 participants from around the world as well as tens of thousands of spectators cheering them on.
Like most events in 2020, it was postponed and ultimately went virtual.
Participants, like those from Waterloo Region, were then tasked with completing the 42.1 km race between Sept. 5-14.
“I was really glad they made it virtual because then we had something to train for all summer and something to do for fun,” said runner Michelle Craddock. “I know it sounds crazy but it is fun.”
The virtual switch meant runners were racing closer to home and could have their bubble at the finish line cheering them on.
“It’s amazing, I can’t tell you how much,” said runner Janette Thompson. “It’s so wonderful to have my parents here who wouldn’t have been able to make it to Boston.”
A virtual race also means runners have the freedom to design their own route.
Once the timer was set though, a break for water or getting stuck at a red light counts toward the runner’s time and place in the race.
“I had to find a route that had few traffic lights and not too many hills and some trails,” said Craddock. “It’s challenging.”
Runners in Waterloo Region who completed the virtual race have submitted their times on the Boston Marathon app and can see how they stacked up against the rest of the world.