Toronto Woman Runs Boston Marathon With Her BlackBerry Pearl.
When Christine Ross, a senior marketing executive who trains with Marathon Dynamics in Toronto,
competed in this year's Boston Marathon, she ran with two companions – her best friend Janice and
her BlackBerry® Pearl™ 8100 smartphone. BlackBerry Connection® met up with Christine to discuss her
unique BlackBerry® experience.
BlackBerry Connection (BC): Good morning Christine. Can you tell me how long you've been running?
Christine Ross (CR): I've been running since high school. But I didn't run my first marathon until the Toronto Marathon in 1989.
I have now completed 12 full marathons - including Boston several times - and 15 half marathons.
B.C.: How long have you been running with your BlackBerry Pearl?
C.R.: I got my Pearl late last year and I love it. I take it with me on all of my long runs. It gives me a sense of security,
just in case something goes wrong. It also lets my husband call me while I'm on the road to check in and see how I'm doing.
B.C.: Why did you decide to run the 2007 Boston Marathon?
C.R.: I told my friend Janice that if she ever qualified for Boston I would run with her. [Note: Runners need to qualify for the
Boston Marathon.] I hadn't qualified over the last year. But I found out I could get in by raising money for the Colonel Daniel
Marr Boys and Girls Club of Boston.
I really wanted to do something for kids, so it was the perfect fit. Janice and I were able to raise $4,050 (U.S.).
B.C.: Good for you! So why did you take your BlackBerry Pearl with you to Boston?
C.R.: I don't go anywhere without it. In Boston, it let me keep in touch with my office through email. And I was able to send
text messages to my kids to let them know how I was. I even used my Pearl to help a friend of mine shop for running gear.
B.C.: Could you tell me more about this?
C.R.: Sure! There's a Runner's Expo that's part of the Boston Marathon weekend. While I was there, I found a great jacket for a
friend. I texted her to see if she wanted me to pick it up. I even sent her a picture of the jacket that I took with my Pearl.
She then emailed me with her size.
B.C.: Did you always plan on taking your BlackBerry Pearl with you for the marathon?
C.R.: I decided to run with it because I was having trouble with my leg. I thought there was a chance that I'd have to stop during
the marathon and contact somebody. I also had friends along the route that I wanted to keep in touch with – to tell them how I was
doing and where I was.
B.C.: Were you worried about carrying the extra weight?
C.R.: Not really, because it's incredibly light. I had run with it before so I was used to it. When you are running long
distance, you are carrying all kinds of things like gels and bottles. All I had to do was put my Pearl in the pocket of my race jacket.
B.C.: How did you use your BlackBerry Pearl during the race?
C.R.: I used it to take pictures, text my kids while they were at school and send emails to people at the office with updates and
pictures. I even phoned a friend who was waiting for me on the route to tell her I was coming. I also phoned my husband so that he
could hear the cheering of the crowd. He said that he felt like he was right there with me.
B.C.: Could I see a few of the photos?
C.R.: Sure! (To see Christine's photos, visit link.)
B.C.: Those photos are amazing. You can see how terrible the weather was. You must have been soaked.
C.R.: Absolutely. I took a couple of pictures in downtown Boston while I was waiting in line for the bus to the start line. I was
covered in plastic. And I wasn't worried about my BlackBerry getting wet because it was in my waterproof jacket.
B.C.: How come you didn't use the Pearl's MP3 player to listen to music?
C.R.: Real runners don't listen to music when they are running. I also spent the first ten miles talking to Janice and the rest of
the time taking in the crowd.
B.C.: So overall, how would you rate your BlackBerry experience?
C.R.: A perfect 10/10. It enhanced my Boston experience because it allowed me to share my experience with my others in real time.
My family told me they felt like they were there. I love my BlackBerry. The whole world should have one. Now can I make a suggestion?
C.R.: I really wish there was a sport holder to run with like they have with MP3 players. One that would attach to your arm. Then I
could run with my BlackBerry during summer months when I don't have a jacket pocket to put it in.
B.C.: I'll be sure to pass that on. Thanks for taking the time to talk to BlackBerry Connection. Good luck with your future races.
Do you have a unique BlackBerry experience you would like to share? Tell us about it.