Desiree Linden has participated in six Boston Marathons in her career, but none of her past races is compared to the one last week when the female runner crossed the finish line as soon as the clock in Boston’s Copley Square struck 2:39.54.
But the finishing time didn’t matter to Linden as much as her place in the oldest and most reputable marathon in the world. The 34-year-old couldn’t believe that among the talented runners, she was the first one to cross the finish line – becoming the first female runner to win the Boston Marathon in 33 years.
First Female Winner in 33 Years
It has been more than a week since Linden claimed the title of first female Boston Marathon winner in 33 years and the 34-year-old runner says that the feeling is still so surreal that sometimes she needs to pinch herself to make herself believe that she was really able to accomplish an incredible feat that no other woman has achieved in over three decades.
Even in the intense rain and hypothermia-level freezing cold, Desiree Linden persevered for almost three hours until she finally ran across the finish line. Since then, she has become somewhat of a media sensation with dozens of reporters and television shows requesting her for exclusive interviews.
It’s a big moment in Linden’s career, one that she has been anticipating for years. Now that she has conquered the milestone, it’s time for her to relax and give her body time to recover from months of training for the marathon.
Preparing for the Big Victory
The first time she ran a marathon in Boston was in 2007 when she was only 23 years old and still unmarried. A year later, she qualified for Olympic Trials and finished among the top 20 runners but like any other champion, Linden was not satisfied until she could place first in a marathon.
So, she decided to train for one of the most competitive races of her life in 2012’s Boston marathon but lost the winning title to Kenyan champion Caroline Kilel by two seconds.
In the years after the close race, more achievements followed including a number of top 10 finishes and more Olympic Trials and a 6th place in Rio Olympics 2016. However, none of them compares to the historic Boston marathon of April 16, 2018 which earned Linden the first place, making her the first female winner in 33 years.
The marathoner says that she has been aiming for a big win against some of the best competitors for years. She had always earned a place in the top 20 or top 10, but never the title of a marathon champion – until now. Linden believes that all the years of training and patience were worth it and her perseverance has finally paid off.
The Secret to Marathoner’s Success
Now, the Boston champion is on a media marathon, making one television appearance after another so that the world can hear her inspirational story. The runner says that one of the biggest secrets of her success is the consistent hard work she put in her profession and her perseverance despite failing to win a single marathon or Olympic race for the first 10 years of her career.
Josh Cox, Linden’s agent and coach, has run quite a few successful marathons himself back in the day, even setting a 50K record in 2009 and 2011 in Arizona’s Rock ‘n’ Roll. He says that the new Boston Marathon champion is like a little sister to him and he had always wanted the best for her.
After having a close brush with victory in 2012 Olympic marathon, Linden has reached a new peak in her career after claiming the championship title in the most recent Boston race. Cox says that women inside and outside the sports industry are thrilled about Linden’s victory and that no one is worthier of the title than the 34-year-old.
Linden admits that she is somewhat of a perfectionist and her result-oriented attitude has helped her get better in her profession over the past several years. Now Cox agrees that Linden needs to take a break from running and get a good period of recovery before coming back stronger and faster than before.