University Relations and Communications


April 26, 2017



MSUB’s Yamashita-Hunt shares Boston Marathon Experience



International Studies, 657-1705

University Relations, 657-2266


MSU BILLINGS NEWS SERVICES — Most people pat themselves on the back for walking 10,000 steps in a day.


That’s nothing compared to the 32 miles Makiko Yamashita-Hunt put in on April 18.


After Yamashita-Hunt completed the grueling 26-mile Boston Marathon (in an impressive 3 hours, 26 minutes and 33 seconds) she had to walk another five miles to where her family parked the car.


“I thought it was something I would laugh about later,” she said.


The administrative assistant with Montana State University Billings’ Office of International Studies probably hasn’t stopped smiling since finishing the race 6140 overall, with nearly 30100 registered to participate and 1114 for her gender and chances are her anecdote will be chuckle worthy for years to come.


She also laughs about over indulging on breakfast the morning of the race and trying fresh wild lobster in Maine the night before.


“Eating lobster in Maine was on my bucket list, but afterwards I kind of regretted it because I was worried about an allergic reaction,” Yamashita-Hunt said.


Her multiple snacks the day of the race resulted in a side cramp that lasted the entirety of her run.


“I didn’t enjoy the race at all,” she said. “Plus, it was so hot. I wanted to quit.”


During this misery, she found comfort and inspiration from runners around her and the Boston community supporting the event.


“At one point, a runner shared his water with me and when I had quit running and was walking the people helping with the race started yelling, ‘Don’t quit! Keep running!’” Yamashita-Hunt said.


Digging deep, the marathoner found a quicker pace.


“It was such an amazing experience and I was overcome with everyone’s kindness. Boston really takes pride in hosting this large race every year and I saw little block parties and people out barbequing and eating hotdogs. Everyone gets into the spirit,” she said.


The 33-year-old began running marathons just two-years ago and qualified for the Boston Marathon after winning last year’s Montana Marathon.


She ran half-marathons and 5Ks prior, but said long-distance runs allow her to compete with herself, not others.

“The marathon is about your determination,” she said.


In the future, Yamashita-Hunt may return to Boston and would like to run in the Berlin Marathon.


She’ll be enjoying German’s beer and bread, but not right before the race.