31 Mar 2017
By Govind O’Campo
The city of Los Angeles hosted the 32nd L.A. Marathon on Sunday, March 18. The 26.2 mile “Stadium to Sea” course begins at Dodger Stadium and ends at the Santa Monica Pier, challenging participants to finish under the six and a half-hour time limit. Over 24,000 athletes from all 50 states and more than 63 countries attended the L.A. Marathon.
Senior James Crisafulli and junior Jake Guinane participated in the marathon. Guinane’s aunt and Crisafulli’s mother were both diagnosed with breast cancer, which ultimately drove both of them to run the marathon.
Guinane challenged himself to not only finish the marathon but also raise money for a charity. He said, “I decided to register on behalf of the City of Hope, and I signed an agreement form for the foundation which not only stated that I had to finish the marathon but also raise $650 or more for this charity.”
“My primary motivations were my charity and just the daunting task of the marathon itself,” Crisafulli said.
The pair trained together for about two months, running two to three times per week. They ran from four miles to 20 miles in preparation for the race. As race day approached, both Crisafulli and Guinane were overcome with emotions.
Crisafulli said, “Before the marathon I was extremely nervous. For the entire week leading up to it, I began to question myself and doubt my ability.”
Guinane experienced a similar sense of doubt in the days prior to the race. He said, “Before the marathon, I was very anxious and started asking myself if I was way over my head.”
Despite their anxiety and doubts, Guinane and Crisafulli found the experience to be very fulfilling. Crisafulli said, “The energy of the crowd fueled me to keep going and it gave me great faith in the people of Los Angeles. I am so grateful for their support and enthusiasm.”
Although both Guinane and Crisafulli trained for and participated in the marathon together, they each walked away with a different experience. Guinane said, “Immediately after the race, I promised myself that I would never run a marathon again, but after my legs, feet and mind become restored to their original state, I may reconsider.”
Crisafulli said, “I decided that this event was an amazing once-in-a-lifetime experience.”