Saturday, Dec 10, 2016
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Perrysburg runner finishes Boston Marathon as 91st male

matt-folk

Matt Folk, in yellow to the right, shown here at mile 25.5 in running Monday's Boston Marathon.

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Runners do a lot of thinking on a 26.2-mile race like the Boston Marathon this week.

Perrysburg resident Matt Folk, who participated in the race, thought about all the runners in last year's race who were told to stop before the finish.

"You work this hard with all the long hours, and I can't imagine not finishing," he said on Tuesday after finishing his 16th marathon. "It is hard to comprehend. I can't imagine being in their shoes."

That is what made finishing the Boston Marathon on Monday so exciting. Mr. Folk said it showed people last year's hate wouldn't stop the race.

Last year, two homemade bombs went off, killing three and wounding 260. After the incident, the race was suspended and runners who had not finished did not get to do so.

Mr. Folk, owner of Second Sole in Levis Commons, finished this year's 2 hours 30 minutes 33 seconds, good enough to be the 91st best male time. 

"I was hoping to sneak under 2:30, but it was a tough race, and I wasn't too far off," he said.

With temperatures getting to the 60s, it was much warmer than when he was training around Perrysburg. He said that in the second half of the race, he was sweating heavily and getting tired.

Still, finishing the race after so many couldn't last year meant a lot. 

"It was special," Mr. Folk said. "Everyone wanted to show their support and prove the marathon will go on. It was neat to be apart of that."

Huge crowds all weekend, signs during the race, and little children giving high fives was very supportive to the runners, Mr. Folk said. It also was "eerie" to him seeing the new sidewalk and building that was replaced from the bombs last year.

Volunteers working the course were extra cheery and joyous to Mr. Folk.

"I think it was part of the healing process for them, to see things to return the way they were," he said. 

Contact Matt Thompson at: mthompson@theblade.com, 419-356-8786, or on Twitter at @mthompson25.

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