Shalane Flanagan decided not to retire following the biggest win of her career. Rather, she hopes to perhaps top her New York City Marathon victory by winning the Boston Marathon on April 16.
“My heart ♥️ said……give it one more chance, try again,” was posted on Flanagan’s social media Monday. “See everyone in Boston on Patriots Day.”
The 36-year-old, four-time Olympian is entered in the world’s oldest annual 26.2-mile race after spending November debating retirement.
She’ll be joined in the field by a slew of American stars:
Jordan Hasay — 2017 Boston Marathon, third place
Desi Linden — 2011 Boston Marathon, second place
Molly Huddle — 2016 NYC Marathon, third place
Deena Kastor — 2004 Olympic bronze medalist
Galen Rupp — 2017 Boston Marathon, second place
Dathan Ritzenhein — Three-time Olympian
Abdi Abdirahman — 2016 NYC Marathon, third place
Flanagan became the first U.S. female runner to win New York in 40 years by upsetting world-record holder Mary Keitany of Kenya on Nov. 5.
Flanagan teased before the race that she might retire if she pulled off the upset victory, likening it to winning the Super Bowl and walking away.
“I don’t know what it feels like to be Tom Brady or anything, but it’s pretty epic,” she said one day after the win. “Imagine everyone has an individual goal in their lives that they’re striving for, potentially, and achieving that ultimate goal that seems audacious at times. That seems so far-fetched.
“I’m very passionate about running, but there are other things in my life that I love. … There’s other ways I want to contribute to the sport. I want to teach young women how to eat well and how to take care of themselves. Yeah, I have other passions that are starting to bubble up.”
Flanagan has raced 10 marathons since winning a 2008 Olympic 10,000m silver medal, including three times in Boston, near her hometown of Marblehead, Mass.
She was fourth in 2013, fifth in 2014 and ninth in 2015. The last U.S. female runner to win Boston was Lisa Larsen Weidenbach in 1985.
Flanagan, who with her husband fostered two teenage girls since Rio, will release her second co-authored cookbook — “Run Fast. Cook Fast. Eat Slow” — in August.
“I’d have to really assess what’s going to drive me forward,” she said after winning New York. “If I do continue to go forward, you have to have a lot of motivation to be in this sport. It’s an all-encompassing lifestyle. It’s not a nine-to-five. It’s literally every single day you’re making decisions. How can I be the best possible athlete? You don’t check in and check out.”
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