Boise Marathon Runner Tells Her Story
Rachael Arren, a 38-year-old insurance agent from Meridian, Idaho, broke the tape at the Boise Marathon on October 28, finishing at 3:13:54. She bested the second-place finisher (a male) by over a minute.
“Breaking the tape was surreal. Seeing my husband and friends at the finish line, and knowing that they wouldn't be expecting it to be me breaking the tape, really helped me push those last few miles.”
Arren was the first woman to come in first overall, male participants included, since the race began in 2016, according to the Idaho Statesman.
In 2016, she went out with the goal of winning this same race, but misdirection from a course volunteer lead her nearly a mile off course and knocked her out of first-place contention.
Though frustrating at the time, Arends said, “It’s pretty darn funny now,” and that it earned her a 28.2 mile PR with a time of 3:33:09. She still managed a first-place finish in the female category.
While she finished first, Arrens said she didn’t feel like it was her day out on the course, and even mentioned that to friends she saw along the way. Her training did not include her typical speedwork, because she’s trying to avoid burnout before completing The Big Sur Challenge in 2019—the Boston Marathon and the Big Sur Marathon in California, run just two weeks apart.
The day before the race, Arrens said she joked that a 3:18 finish sounded like a good goal. Her PR is 3:08.53, which she ran at the New York City Marathon in 2017.
“I trained my a-- off for that time and fought for it. That's my proudest running achievement to date. Winning a race is very cool, don't get me wrong, but I wasn't feeling that strong this time,”
“I personally know the pacer, and we spent the last 10 miles running toward the finish together. He kept things exciting by informing everyone we passed (half marathoners and aid station crews) that I was the current first place runner.” Arends said. “The excitement, particularly from other women, was a cool experience. Nobody was expecting a woman to win.”