What is it about Boston?
Why has it become the Holy Grail for marathoners who want to do more than “just finish”?
Some say it’s the course itself: starting in Hopkinton, through the scream tunnel at Wellesley College, up Heartbreak Hill and into downtown Boston, where even middle-of-the-pack runners get the rock star treatment from the crowds lining the streets.
But the way we see it, what gives Boston its unequaled mystique is the challenge of qualifying: They won’t let just anyone into the world’s greatest marathon.
It’s that dream of qualifying that makes Boston so captivating. But can you get there?
Believe it or not, qualifying isn’t all about talent
Qualifying for Boston can be the proudest achievement of a runner’s life. But for most runners, the struggle to qualify ends in disappointment.
You’ve probably experienced it yourself. Over-training, injuries, frustration with stagnant marathon times. You might even be wondering if you’re wasting your time.
It wasn’t that long ago that I was in this exact situation. I knew I wanted to get to Boston — no question there. But there was one problem.
Marathon training was hard! My first marathon took me 4 hours and 53 minutes, over an hour and 40 minutes slower than what I needed to qualify for Boston! And worse, every time I started to train for another one, I just kept getting injured again.
So when three years ago I qualified for Boston and earned that Confirmation of Acceptance with my name on it — my spot in the world’s best marathon — you can imagine how amazing it was to see just how far I had come, to accomplish what I had dreamed about for so long and worked so hard for.
I realized that qualifying for Boston wasn’t about talent (clearly, I didn’t have much to begin with), or even sticking to some crazy training schedule that nobody with a job and a family could realistically do — instead, it was about little things, done correctly and in the right order to stay healthy and consistent.
I got the idea that I could help others qualify too, by sharing what I learned about how to take massive time off your marathon and get to Boston. Then I met Jason Fitzgerald, a USA Track and Field certified running coach, 2:39 marathoner (!), and an admitted running nerd, and we knew we could create something pretty special, to help other runners qualify for Boston like we did.
What we’ve got for you
If you’re reading this page, you’re invited to join Run Your BQ, a comprehensive training system and community of runners that’s entirely dedicated to a single purpose: helping people like you get to Boston.
Here’s a quick overview what’s inside Run Your BQ:
- Training plans: we have a library of training plans, built to get you ready to run your fastest marathon. There’s a plan for every runner, no matter what your ability or mileage level, incorporating the principles that are absolutely essential for getting stronger and faster while staying healthy. There are even post-marathon recovery plans that will help you rest up and get prepared for your next race.
- Specific marathon training lessons: we’ve put together 12 modules of over 40 lessons on the most critical, essential things you’ve got to understand in order to get fast enough to BQ — some are written, others include videos, and some have an audio component that you can actually listen to while you run. We cover injury prevention, workouts and how to best gain the endurance it takes to BQ, diet and fueling strategies, qualifying standards, and recovery.
- Personalized coaching: Each month, we’ll do at least one live video Q&A session, where you can ask us anything you want about your specific training, diet, mindset, or whatever else you need help with on your way to Boston-qualifying, to help you get unstuck or figure out what to do next.
- Community access: In addition to the live sessions, there’s an entire forum where you’ll be able to connect with us, as well as access the community of our other runners who have the same goal as you do, to get support, share successes, and find out what’s working for others in the same boat.
Here’s the cool part
Run Your BQ isn’t a static thing — we’re constantly updating and expanding it, based largely on your needs. It’s essentially group coaching, with some 1-on-1 aspects thrown in to make it even more personalized for your specific needs.
If you need more information about preventing IT band issues, we’ll add some content about how to avoid it, and a video on rehab techniques. If you want to know more about nutrition for workouts, we’ll take the existing lesson on that and expand it, adding some new recipes or suggested meals.
Even better though, Run Your BQ is flexible. This means that when our members decide they need a new function — say a map to locate other members to train and race with, or a custom pace calculator to match their workouts to their goal times — our tech team can make it happen for you.
To get a taste of the connection and interactivity that happens inside, take a look at this three-and-half minute video tour of Run Your BQ:
What exactly is inside Run Your BQ?
Run Your BQ is more than just a training plan (although we do have a lot of those!). Here’s just a little bit more detail about what you can expect to find inside:
- 7 training plans for beginners to advanced marathoners (and more being added), with mileage options from the low 20’s all the way up to 80 miles per week, so you can choose the plan that fits with where you are as a runner
- 3 additional out-season training plans, to help you recover from a marathon and gradually get back into running safely, with a focus on injury prevention
- How to set your goal and develop a rock-solid mindset, and how to deal with short-term “failures” (plus the importance of small wins)
- Over 25 videos of strength exercises, running form, mobility and flexibility exercises, so you can see what they should look like instead of having to wonder if you’re doing them correctly
- 3 approaches to optimal nutrition for endurance: a traditional one, a paleo option, and one for plant-based athletes
- Complete details on the new Boston qualifying requirements, plus how to choose the best marathon to help you qualify
- Audio downloads of important training articles and tools, so you can listen to them while you run or whenever is most convenient for you
- Injury prevention made simple — 7 strategies you can use today
- How to optimally fuel before your race to give yourself the best chance of staying strong for 26.2 miles
- How to taper, pace your marathon, recover after the race, and when you can start running again
- New: a Facebook-style Run Your BQ feed on the dashboard, where you can connect with other members to share advice, photos, race results, and support
- New: Smart phone ready interface — custom app works on all smart phones so you can access your daily workout and other features of the members area from the road
We’ve held nothing back in the knowledge base of Run Your BQ — with over 40 lessons and 25+ videos, you’ll get the marathon guidance you need to help you train for your specific qualifying time.
Way more than just information …
It’s one thing to just throw a bunch of information at you and leave you to figure it out. Plenty of other training programs already do that, but it’s not what Run Your BQ is about.
We’re committed to providing unmatched support and interaction along the way. In Run Your BQ, you’ll be able to connect with us and other members through:
- Ongoing, live video chats with us, to talk about specific training issues that you’re facing. We’re going to be taking your questions so you always know the best way to train given your particular circumstances. We’ll do at least one of these chats every single month, and we always provide recordings for those who can’t make it.
- Forum access to us and all of the other members of Run Your BQ, where you can share your successes, be held accountable, and develop a bond with other marathoners who share your goal of qualifying for Boston. There are already over 500 members in Run Your BQ, so you’ll always get answers to your questions.
For example, here’s a thread from inside Run Your BQ, where one of our members posted about his BQ:
How much does Run Your BQ cost?
Membership in Run Your BQ is for life, so whether you qualify in your very next marathon or in five years from now, you’ll always be able to log on to Run Your BQ for help and support.
That means when you join, you’ll lock in lifetime access to the entire site: the training plans, the articles, the videos, the forums, the live video chats, and everything else we add as we continually improve the site.
Two more perks of lifetime membership:
- Whenever we add something to improve the site, you’ll have access to it — even if the price goes up
- 100% no-risk guarantee — if you’re not totally satisfied, let us know in the first 60 days and we’ll happily refund your entire enrollment fee (no questions asked)
All of this is available for the one-time enrollment fee of $157.
Think about it — you pay just once, and you’ll have access to this incredible training resource for life. And it’s constantly growing in value. Even if, say, you decide to take a break from running at some point, it’ll all be waiting for you when you get back.
Ready to join us? Click the button below to commit to making your BQ happen:
As soon as you’ve signed up, you’ll get full access to the site and forums so you can dig into all the content and start getting to know your fellow members.
What if I don’t love it?
We’re proud of Run Your BQ, and we want our members to love it too. We have no doubt that you will, but we don’t want you feel like you’re risking anything by joining.
So if you sign up and — for any reason whatsoever — you’re not completely thrilled with Run Your BQ, and within the first 60 days don’t feel like you’re running stronger than ever and making dramatic progress towards qualifying for Boston, just let us know. We’ll refund your entire enrollment fee — no questions, no weirdness, no guilt. We’ll even thank you for giving Run Your BQ a try.
Sign up now and join us for our next live Coach’s Chat!
Who are we?
I’ve already told you most of my story. My name is Matt, and I’m a normal guy who never really liked running as a kid (and was never any good at it back then either). But I guess you could say I became obsessed with the goal of qualifying for Boston, and I learned enough about running and worked hard enough to overcome those shortcomings and make it happen. I write the website No Meat Athlete, which now has over 30,000 subscribers and is read by over 300,000 people each month, and my first published book was released in the fall of 2013.
My partner on this project is Jason Fitzgerald, a USA Track and Field certified coach and 2:39 marathoner. As a self-proclaimed “running nerd,” he reads science studies and training articles in his spare time — so he’s definitely the perfect person to talk with about your training! Over the last 4+ years of coaching, Jason has helped runners take 20, 30, and even 40 minutes off their marathon times. He also writes the blog Strength Running and is a Running Contributor to Active.com.
We and our work have been featured in/on the following websites and publications:
Here’s what a few of our Run Your BQ members have had to say about the program:
I just wanted to thank you. I’ve been a loyal reader of no meat athlete for a while and signed up for Run Your BQ right at the beginning of the trial period in February. The site is awesome and I learned a ton from all the resources you have up there. You’re doing really great work. Don’t know if it was the good zen of signing up for the site, but just a few days afterwards, I ran a 3:02 at the Austin marathon. I’d hit a wall in two previous attempts at a BQ around the 20 mile mark, and ended up running a 3:09 in those races. I really attribute a lot of that turnaround to the nutrition information and form recommendations on your site (I’m now eating vegan 4 days a week and vegetarian the rest of the time). I’m also running 70 miles a week now no problem and again I think that’s attributable in large part to your advice.
– Vincent R., Run Your BQ member
Lo and behold!! Faster times, faster recovery, longer mileage, no injury (crossing my fingers) … a complete turnaround. I used to do my long runs with an 11:30/mi pace — now I’m down to 10:40-11:05/mi even for my 20 milers. Slowly but surely!!I particularly love that the Strength and Core workouts are running-specific and can be done at home. With all my days spent running, I’ve given up my gym membership. Jason, you saved me $135 every month, so thanks!
Your program has already helped me *immensely*. I love it that I can post a question and get support from my fellow RYBQ-ers plus get expert advice from you [Jason] and Matt. Thank you!!
– Karen, Run Your BQ member
“RYBQ has given me a solid, thorough plan to help me improve my running. It’s been key in helping me increase my weekly mileage and recover more efficiently. Before RYBQ, I didn’t really believe I could be much faster than a 10 minute/mile marathoner. Now, I feel a lot more serious about my running and I’m confident that I’ll reach my BQ goal.”
– Maureen O., FL, Run Your BQ Member
Your program and instruction is already making me feel so much better in my running! Where have you been all my 20 years of running? I am SO thankful to have signed up for my BIG future!!This morning I started your program, came home, and my body felt better than it has EVER felt and now almost ½ day later, my plantar fasciitis isn’t bothering me either.
– Jill M., Run Your BQ member
Ready to join our 500+ members inside Run Your BQ? Click the button below to get started right now:
And here’s what a few other people have had to say about us, and how we’ve helped them achieve their running goals:
“2011 was the Year of the PR for me and I owe it all to Jason! In 2011, I shaved 34 minutes off my marathon PR and was able to run the entire 26.2 for the first time! I also got a lot stronger and recovered faster, enough that at the end of the year I was able to do a back-to-back marathon/half marathon. Thanks Jason!”
– Lisa G., CA
“Ever since learning about Boston and the rigorous standards for acceptance, I’ve dreamed about qualifying. When I reached out for advice and support to help me achieve my goal, I came across Matt’s article about how he qualified for Boston. It meant so much more coming from a guy who, like me, was nowhere near qualifying at first. He had been where I was, and had the credibility to tell me with confidence that I could do it if I was willing to work hard for it. I followed his advice and after a year of serious training I reached my goal at the 2010 Philadelphia Marathon! It was one of the most incredible days of my life and I owe it, in part, to the advice and support Matt offered during my journey.”
– Kevin Dillon, Boston 2012 qualifier
“After following Jason’s plan, I ran my second marathon and blew my PR out of the water by 46 minutes! I had no IT band issues and I’m sticking with Jason all the way to Boston! Thanks Jason, I couldn’t have done it without you.”
– Ryan W., NJ, 4:20 to 3:34 marathon at Philly
“Last year when preparing for the Boston Marathon, I suffered an ITB injury and was unable to race. I started 1-on-1 coaching with Jason, and since then I’ve continued to improve my speed and strength, culminating in a PR at the Philadelphia Marathon. I’m currently running faster and longer than I ever have before, and getting ready to head to Boston in April. This time around Jason’s coaching has made all the difference, and I’m staying healthy and enjoying my running tremendously!”
– Christine S., PA
“I used to have chronic pain in my left Achilles and a really tight right hip, IT Band, and lower back. After using your suggestions, I’m having more fun with my running because I’m feeling fantastic and been able to run multiple 6-7 mile runs with negative splits, which I wouldn’t have been able to do without your advice. . I’m running 4-5 days per week and have no pain in my hips, knees, or back. The advice you gave has given me the confidence to increase my mileage and now my legs feel stronger.”
– Mike S., GA
Make the commitment to achieve what so many marathoners only dream about. Click the button below to take the first step now.
PS — Don’t forget that we offer an unbeatable guarantee: if in the first 60 days of your membership you’re not seeing big results or finding Run Your BQ to be worth way more than it costs, we’ll give a 100% refund. Absolutely no questions asked.