Utah runner’s dream of running Boston Marathon now on hold

May 29, 2020, 1:31 PM | Updated: 4:20 pm
Dustin Williams receives a medal after finishing the Utah Valley Marathon. Williams was planning to run in the Boston Marathon, but now must decide whether to wait until 2021 or participate virtually. Photo courtesy: Dustin Williams

News that the Boston Marathon won’t happen is pretty sad for some Utah runners who had it on their bucket list.

“Once I got qualified, I was excited,” said Dustin Williams. “I thought, I want to try and train hard and maybe get close to my PR (personal record) and see what happens.”

So, Williams got to training. 

“Unfortunately, training was going really well,” he said with a laugh. “I was definitely on pace to run faster than I did last year.”

Williams is the BYU track and field head athletic trainer. He was in Alburqurque in March with the team for the national championships when sporting events started getting canceled. He figured the Boston Marathon, set for April 20, would be next.

“I was supposed to run my longest run that weekend, a 20-miler,” he said. “And I thought, you know what, I think I’m going to take a break.”

Then he learned Boston would be postponed until September. He thought that would work out better, because he could train all summer. He was supposed to be going to Japan for the Olympics when those were postponed until 2021.

“So it’s been a roller coaster of emotions,” he said.

Now Boston organizers say the race in September will be virtual, instead.

Williams previously ran the Boston Marathon in 2001 as a college undergrad, but had an injury and didn’t do well. Then, he said life got busy with graduate school and marriage and his wife’s Olympic shot-put career.

He wanted to do the Boston Marathon this year to redeem himself, and try and beat his personal record of 2:52 that he ran in 2007.

Now he has to decide if he’ll run Boston as a virtual marathon in September, or try for next year instead. He qualified with a time of 2:59:59, which, for his age group, he says should still hold for next year.

He said he feels empathetic for the athletes who are in their prime who feel like they are in limbo.

“I think everyone is understanding how serious this pandemic has been, and we have to do what we can with what we got,” he said.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Today’s Top Stories


utah jazz educator award winners...
Andrew Gordon

Spanish Fork teacher is year’s first Jazz “Most Valuable Educator”

The Jazz "Most Valuable Educator" honor comes with a custom Jazz jersey and $1,000 grant for the winning teacher's classroom.
4 days ago
A fundraising effort has begun to raise $100 million to help redevelop the Ballpark neighborhood of...
Randall Jepson

Council chair weighs in on the future of Smith’s Ballpark

Ballpark Community Council Chair Amy Hawkins sees future green space and a place for people to relax at the site of Smith's Ballpark.
4 days ago
girls play tackle football...
Randall Jeppesen

Girls’ tackle football lawsuit reinstated

Several girls filed a lawsuit in 2017 to get three Utah school districts to create tackle football teams for girls.
12 days ago
A fundraising effort has begun to raise $100 million to help redevelop the Ballpark neighborhood of...
Simone Seikaly

Salt Lake Bees baseball relocating to new field in Daybreak in 2025

The new Bees baseball stadium will be privately financed by owner, The Larry H. Miller Company, and is expected to be completed by the 2025 season.
12 days ago
A Snow College student-athlete died Monday morning in a two-car accident on SR-132. Photo credit: U...
Samantha Herrera

Snow College softball player dies in car accident

Snow College student and athlete Paige Rydalch reportedly died in a car crash Monday morning. She was an infielders on the school's softball team.
13 days ago
Hamlin is breathing on his own and speaking to family, physicians and teammates -- positive updates...
Elizabeth Wolfe, Jacob Lev and Adrienne Broaddus, CNN

‘Keep praying for me’: Damar Hamlin, breathing on his own, posts on Instagram for the first time since collapse

Hamlin is breathing on his own and speaking to family, physicians and teammates. Positive updates Bills players say.
22 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Banner with Cervical Cancer Awareness Realistic Ribbon...
Intermountain Health

Five Common Causes of Cervical Cancer – and What You Can Do to Lower Your Risk

January is National Cervical Cancer Awareness month and cancer experts at Intermountain Health are working to educate women about cervical cancer, the tests that can warn women about potential cancer, and the importance of vaccination.
Kid holding a cisco fish at winterfest...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Get Ready for Fun at the 2023 Bear Lake Monster Winterfest

The Bear Lake Monster Winterfest is an annual weekend event jam-packed full of fun activities the whole family can enjoy. This year the event will be held from January 27-29 at the Utah Bear Lake State Park Marina and Sunrise Resort and Event Center in Garden City, Utah. 
happy friends with sparklers at christmas dinner...

15 Easy Christmas Dinner Ideas

We’ve scoured the web for you and narrowed down a few of our favorite Christmas dinner ideas to make your planning easy. Choose from the dishes we’ve highlighted to plan your meal or start brainstorming your own meal plan a couple of weeks before to make sure you have time to shop and prepare.
Spicy Homemade Loaded Taters Tots...

5 Game Day Snacks for the Whole Family (with recipes!)

Try these game day snacks to make watching football at home with your family feel like a special occasion. 
Happy joyful smiling casual satisfied woman learning and communicates in sign language online using...

The Best Tools for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Workplace Success

Here are some of the best resources to make your workplace work better for Deaf and hard-of-hearing employees.
Team supporters celebrating at a tailgate party...

8 Delicious Tailgate Foods That Require Zero Prep Work

In a hurry? These 8 tailgate foods take zero prep work, so you can fuel up and get back to what matters most: getting hyped for your favorite
Utah runner’s dream of running Boston Marathon now on hold