By Nancy McGill
Ann Hubl holds a Boston Marathon qualifying time, but she must wait until September to find out if she has been accepted into one of the largest marathons in the world watched every year by at least one million people.
Hubl ran her qualifying marathon in Phoenix at the BMO Harris Bank event in 3:27. She finished eighth out of 198 women in the 35 to 39 age category. Overall, she placed 269th out of 2,111 male and female runners.
It was first time she ran that particular race, but it wasn’t her first marathon. Hubl ran last year in Abilene, Kan., at the Eisenhower Marathon. She finished the race in 3:38, just two minutes ahead of Boston’s 3:40 qualifying time, and settled in to wait for September. The Boston event sets aside dates in September for letting runners know if they’re accepted. Hubl will be emailed a registration form in September and then wait five to 10 days to hear back.
She went through the same process last year on the Eisenhower Marathon. Because there are more than 20,000 runners in the Boston challenge, the fastest runners in their respective age categories are chosen.
Hubl’s time didn’t make it, and she heard from her fellow runners in Women Run Nebraska it’s more competitive than before because the race is so popular.
She has ran competitively since college and 15 to 17 half-marathons. After realizing she was running better, she wanted to try a full marathon, but not just any marathon. Hubl wanted to run on a Boston qualifying course.
After hearing she wouldn’t be running in Boston this year, Hubl went back to researching courses and found the Phoenix race.
“I did some research online and tried to find a cool marathon in the beginning of the year,” she said. She settled on Phoenix because of its warm climate. Hubl wasn’t disappointed.
She started running at 6:30 a.m., when the termpature was in the 50s, and by the time she was finished, the temperature was a comfortable 70 degrees.
Her support for the race was her mother, who was due to board the plane with Hubl, however, her mother missed the check-in time and the flight was declared overbooked.
She said she was in Phoenix alone, but felt the presence of her faith. Hubl received a medal for finishing and a runner’s packet packed full of treasures.
Meanwhile, her support was back home with her twin sister, Amy Barry, who is also in Women Run Nebraska. Barry will run the Lincoln Marathon May 1 to try and qualify for Boston.
“Hopefully, we can go to Boston together,” Hubl said.
She said preparing for a marathon requires endurance.
“When I started training, I built up my running mileage to 20 miles on a long run, so 45 to 55 miles a week. You have to eat a lot of carbs, your intake definitely goes up, and you need a lot more sleep and hydration. You’ve got to have a pretty healthy diet,” she said.
More support comes from the women’s running group. Started by Addie Hohman of Seward, the club has 20 members from all over the state. They are defined by their hot pink running shirts, Hubl said.
Hubl has been with the club since the beginning because Hohman is a good friend of hers.
“We started a semi-competitive running group. We have kids and still like to run competitively,” Hubl said.
For more on the women’s club, visit http://www.womenrunnebraska.com/.