Worcester Red Sox

WooSox Assistant Field Superintendent to Run the 2024 Boston Marathon as Part of the Red Sox Foundation's Marathon Charity Team

February 8, 2024 - International League (IL)
Worcester Red Sox News Release

WooSox Assistant Field Superintendent and avid runner Ryan Lefler will appear at the starting line this spring at the 2024 Boston Marathon as part of the Red Sox Foundation's Marathon Charity team. This will be his second time running the Boston Marathon but the eighth marathon he has run overall.

"To be able to use running as a vehicle to raise money and help other people is the least I can do," he said. "[The Red Sox Foundation's Marathon Charity team] does great work raising funds to help veterans, youth and families in the Boston community, as well as communities all over New England."

Although he has now completed seven marathons, Lefler said he used to hate running. Back when he was almost 250 pounds, he realized he "needed to make some changes."

"Around this time is when I started working in baseball on a grounds crew," he said. "Between eating better, exercising a little bit, and being on my feet all day, I started losing weight."

After joining the WooSox Grounds Crew in 2021, Lefler lost over 100 pounds through hard work and training. He has since run four Disney World Dopey Challenges (four races in four consecutive days), the Boston Marathon in 2016, the Philadelphia Marathon, and the Hartford Marathon.

Throughout the WooSox season, he said it becomes harder to train, particularly during homestands when he is at Polar Park "around 100 hours a week" to prepare the ballfield for upcoming games.

"I don't have the time to put a high volume of miles in, so I'll try to maximize what I can by running [the Polar Park concourse] steps with a 20-pound weight vest on for about 45 minutes," Lefler said. "I have also done a 15-mile run, 60 laps, around the [warning] track while waiting for the sun to go down before we can tarp. There was one time before the Hartford Marathon where in order to get my last 20-mile training run in, I woke up at 3 o'clock, ran the 20 miles in the dark, and got to work at 8 a.m. for a Sunday day game."

With 67 days left until Marathon Monday on April 15, Lefler has fundraised 35% of his $10,000 target for the Red Sox Foundation. He said any size donation will go a long way towards hitting his goal and is greatly appreciated.

"By supporting this project, you will contribute to programs that provide education, healthcare, and recreational opportunities to underserved communities," Lefler said. "Together, we can make a positive impact and create a brighter future for those who need it most."

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