A long-distance runner, she competed at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, where she won the bronze medal in the women's 10,000 meter race, and finished second in the 2010 New York City Marathon. But after the terrorist attack at the 2013 Boston Marathon, in which she competed, Ms. Flanagan, who grew up in the Boston coastal suburb of Marblehead and so has an emotional connection to the event, devoted the year leading to the 2014 Boston Marathon to training to win it.
She set the pace for the first nineteen miles but finished seventh despite a personal-best time of 2 hours, 22 minutes, and 2 seconds - less than two minutes behind winner Rita Jeptoo of Kenya. While pleased with her showing, Ms. Flanagan has vowed to try again for victory at the 2015 Boston Marathon. :-)