Almario Gonzales, 63
Mail Carrier, U.S. Postal Service
West Covina, Calif.
I started running in 2005 at age 55 after reading the book by Dr. Steven R. Covey, “The 7 habits of highly effective people.” I was inspired by his famous quote: “To achieve goals you have never achieved before, do the things you have never done before.” Since I started running, I’ve completed 14 marathons. My qualifying race for this year’s event was at the Mountain 2 Beach Marathon last May, where I ran my marathon PR of 3:52:06. This will be my first time running in Boston.
Why are you running the 2014 Boston Marathon?
I’ve worked and trained hard for the last four marathon races in order to qualify for Boston. It’s been my dream since 2009 to qualify for this race.
What part of the course/event are you most looking forward to?
The Athlete’s Village at the start line, Newton’s famous Heartbreak Hill, and, of course, the finish line on Boylston Street.
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What does “Boston Strong” mean to you?
It’s an expression of Boston unity after the bombings. “We are one. We are Boston. We are Boston Strong.” I can hardly wait to be in Boston to feel what the Bostonians feel.
Who is coming out to support you this year?
I have a couple of friends coming out to support me.
What is your race-day goal?
My goal is to re-qualify, and I will try my best to keep qualifying every year. I want to continue to be part of the most prestigious race in the country.