Notes on ‘Boston Bound’ — Hill Navigator Heads North

Matt Lehner, left, and Allen train hard amid a busy Hill schedule. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo.)
Matt Lehner, left, and Allen train hard amid a busy Hill schedule. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo.)
Posted April 16, 2014 at 12:09pm

Capitol Hill staffers, by job design, are dedicated. The boss’ needs are elevated above their own, a staffer’s actions — good and bad — reflect back on the member. The job is all-consuming, sometimes exhausting and overwhelming, but Hill Navigator would not have a column in Roll Call if working on Capitol Hill was not as rewarding as it is.  

STORY: Boston Bound: Capitol Hill Staffers Lace Up for Boston Marathon
Marathon runners, also by design, are dedicated. Those 26.2 miles wouldn’t be completed without months of training, through sub-freezing temperatures, orange-alert humidity, and the occasional mid-March snowstorm. Whether it’s early mornings in the dark or late nights on the treadmill, it’s an undertaking.  

This Monday, I’ll be one of the thousands of spectators waiting alongside the 118th annual Boston Marathon to cheer runners on. The energy of this particular Boston Marathon will undoubtedly be different: The effects of last year’s bombing and new security measures will be acutely felt. But runners are strong. As are Capitol Hill staffers. Such a combination, while unusual, is noteworthy in itself.  

The Boston Marathon, the “gold standard in marathoning” according to Charlie Ban of RunWashington, is the culmination of marathon efforts. Not many people can balance the intense demands of a Capitol Hill job with training for a race as prestigious as the Boston Marathon. But a few are: Kerry Allen , legislative assistant for Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn, hopes to run a 2:48, which is about a 6:25 per mile pace; Scott Zoback , the district press secretary for Rep. James McGovern, D-Mass., who was on Boylston Street last year when the two bombs went off, killing three people and wounding more than 200 more; and Rep. Kyrsten Sinema , D-Ariz., who trains seven days a week, without letting the demands of Congress take her away from it.  

Look for a follow-up post after the marathon to see how each of these runners fared. And follow me on Twitter (@beckgale) on race day for updates.  

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