Less than a week after running Boston, Zdeno Chara conquers London Marathon

Zdeno Chara was a living legend while he was still playing hockey, but that legend is only growing in his “retirement.

Last Monday he ran the Boston Marathon in warm conditions that had many runners being treated for hyperthermia at the finish line. Chara finished that race in 3:30:52, shaving almost eight minutes off his time from last year, his first run of Boston.

For most people, that would have given them a sense of satisfaction that would last a long time, at least to the following year’s annual BAA race.

But Chara is not most people. After running Boston, the former Bruins captain traveled across the Atlantic Ocean to run the London Marathon on Sunday, finishing with a time of 3:11:04, a personal best. Just as noteworthy is the fact that London was Chara’s eighth in a year’s time.

When told of his former defense partner’s feat, Brandon Carlo’s eyes popped. But it only took a second for him to remember who we were talking about.

“I think that speaks to what we saw here for many years,” said Carlo. “He’s very dedicated to his craft in every way. His dedication to things is impeccable. But that’s very impressive to see obviously. I’m not sure I’ll be doing that same sort of thing, but you can tell that that’s what made him such a great athlete. He always wants to push himself and kind of grind though those suffering moments. It’s great to see that mental side of him and there’s a lot to be learned there.”

While Chara is still relatively new to marathon running, but his long-held embrace of the suffering would seem to make him a perfect fit for the sport, despite his 6-foot-9 frame, unusual for long-distance running.

“I think he enjoys it, to be honest,” said Carlo. “That’s part of his character of wanting to feel that sort of pain that he’s pushing himself. All the mentally strong people do that and he’’s up there with some of the best I’ve known.”

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