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Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Book Review of B.A.A. at 125

In the winter when we don't always get outside to run, it can be fun to dream of running a big race like the Boston Marathon. Qualifying for that race is what motivates the training of many runners.

If you've run the Boston Marathon, then you are probably aware that the Boston Athletic Association or B.A.A. is the organization that runs the race. The B.A.A at 125 is billed as the official guide of the Boston Athletic Association.

It has a forward by Boston native Matt Damon. On marathon Monday almost every spectator knows some local running the race.  The strong attachment the locals have to the race is evident to any runner that has done the event.

While even casual runners are aware of Boston, most do not know the history of the event or of the B.A.A.  As a history buff, I enjoyed reading about the founding of the organization and the beginnings of the race.

The book covers the organizations founding in 1887 and the lean years when the organization's existence hung by a thread.  The B.A.A was founded to promote sports among Boston's elite.  Some B.A.A. firsts include:

  • In the first modern Olympic games in Athens in 1896 nine of the fourteen US team members were members of the B.A.A.
  • Members founded the Boston Marathon, the first in the US when the Olympic team members returned from Athens.
  • Running was one of many sports supported by the club including rowing, football, boxing, water polo and track and field.
The book talks about the ups and downs of the club and the sometimes dramatic lives of those that lead the club.  The club reflect the social times and changes in Boston itself.  The volume if full of historic pictures from the club and its athletic events. For anyone that is a fan of the marathon, it is a great read.


Chris Wodke
Founder & Manager Team CMT

Chris is a triathlete and long distance runner. She is a three time participant of the Boston Marathon.  In 2012 she finished 2nd at Boston in the Mobility Impaired Division. She was on the course in 2013 when the bombs exploded.

She has appeared three times at the Paratriathlon National Triathlon Sprint Championship. She was the 2012 and 2014 National Champion Paratriathlon Open Division Champion.

In 2014 she was the PC Open Champion at the Duathlon National Championship. She has qualified to represent Team USA at the Aquathon ITU World Championship in Chicago in 2015.  

 In 2014 she represented  the U.S. as a paratriathlete at the Pan-American Triathlon Championship in Dallas, Texas.

She travels around the country raising awareness of CMT.

She is the author of the book, “Running for My Life” that details her experience as a CMT affected athlete.

You may visit her author page at:

Team CMT is a group of athletes and supporters working to raise awareness and to find a cure for CMT. We have 1756 members in 31 states. We also have members in Australia, England,Scotland, Canada, Vietnam, Turkey, Finland, Scotland, France and Iran. If you wish to join us visit our web site; or

CMT or Charcot-Marie-Tooth is the most commonly inherited peripheral neuropathy. It affects over 155,000 Americans (as many as MS).  It is a disease of the nerves that control the muscles. It is slowly progressive, causing loss of normal function and or sensation in the lower legs/feet and arms/hands.

Symptoms include; muscle wasting in the lower legs and feet leading to foot drop, poor balance and gait problems Atrophy in the hands causes difficulty with manual dexterity.

Structural foot deformities such as high arches and hammer toes are common.

Poor tolerance for cool or cold temperatures and many people have chronically cold hands and feet.

Additional symptoms may include fatigue, sleep apnea, breathing difficulties and hearing loss.

Additional Link
Follow CMT affected Paratriathlete Timmy Dixon

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