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Waldorf Student Runs Boston Marathon

By: Danica Cheney

A Waldorf University student ran the Boston Marathon in April, and he placed 177 out of the 30,000 athletes that were competing.

Aaron Ward is a senior at Waldorf University and he’s been running ever since he was in Junior High. As a kid he was always very energetic and his parents didn’t know how to calm him down. One of his middle school teachers suggested running and that he join the track team. Ever since then he’s fallen in love with the sport.

Ward ran a marathon in Alabama for nationals in 2017, and he had to find the next goal he needed to reach. He chose to train for the Boston Marathon after he found out his time from nationals qualified him for Boston.

In a peak week during his training, Ward could run up to 24 miles a day. An average day of running for Ward is around 12 miles.

On the weekend of the race, Ward headed out to Boston with his siblings and his father. On the day of the race he woke up early and headed out to the station where they bus all of the athletes to the finish line.

While on the bus, Ward made friends with some Boston Marathon veterans and as everyone headed to the starting line to wait in the rain, his new friends led him to a warm church that held a service for the athletes. Because of his new friends Ward was able to stay warm until the beginning of the race.

“It was about 36 degrees and it was raining the whole time,” said Ward. “We had a headwind the whole time with gusts up to 35 mph. After the race I think I was the coldest I’ve ever been.”

Despite the cold weather in April, Ward finished the race in the top 200 and was able to mark another goal off of his list.

“This year at the Boston Marathon there was more pro athletes that quit or stopped running this race than ever before in history,” said Ward. “It was amazing to know I was competing with pretty great athletes, and I was able to get up there.”

Ward isn’t done yet and he has already thought about his new goals that he’s training towards. He has plans to compete in the Boston Marathon again next year, but has even higher hopes for the years to come.

“There’s all the big marathons like Boston, Chicago, New York, Berlin, London and then Tokyo,” said Ward. “I’d like to do them all.”