RIDGEFIELD, Conn. – Four Ridgefield women are putting a unique spin on their girls away weekend. Their version includes a physical and mental challenge, 27,000 athletes and 26.2 miles of running from Hopkinton, Mass., to Boston.
“A lot of women do girls weekends,’’ said Megan Searfoss, who will join Carolyn Couture, Deb Povinelli and Christa Carone on the starting line for Monday’s Boston Marathon. “We plan our girls weekends around our runs and where we can go and challenge ourselves. We’ll get some food and wine in, too. We’ll have our fun. It will be great.”
Searfoss, a triathlete and founder of the Run Like A Mother race series, will be running her fourth Boston and 16th marathon. Povinelli will be running Boston for the 11th time, while Couture and Carone are making their Boston debuts.
Povinelli, Couture and Searfoss met Boston qualifying standards. Carone missed by a little more than a minute when she ran the Philadelphia Marathon in 2011 but got a guaranteed entry from race sponsor Poland Spring. Povinelli is running for a charity.
The women are part of a running group that trains together on weekends. About six months ago, they decided to run the race together.
“Running is kind of the glue that holds us together,’’ Searfoss said. “We meet at 6 in the morning to get our training in. Carolyn and Christa win the award for training the most times in 3-degree weather.”
Searfoss developed a training plan that the women have been following. They meet for their long runs on Sundays and do speed workouts in the middle of the week on East Ridge Road.
Boston newbies Couture and Carone have asked frequently about the demanding course and the infamous Heartbreak Hill at 20 miles. “I tell them we live in Ridgefield,’’ Searfoss said. “I tell them you’ll get over Heartbreak Hill and ask yourself, ‘OK, so where’s the hill?’’’
Povinelli is running to support Massachusetts General Hospital. Readers can make an online donation through her fundraising page.
Will the women stay together in the race? “That’s a great million-dollar question,’’ Searfoss said. “I think at the end of the day, we’re not waiting for anybody. It’s our own race, we all have different objectives. We’ll go out to dinner the night before, ride into Hopkinton together and give each other big hugs before we start. Then we’ll get on our own merry way.”
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