Fit Club

Join the elite at one of the world's biggest fitness shows.

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ome people steer clear of the Back Bay when the Boston Marathon nears, bringing as it does huge crowds of thin, fit runners and thousands of journalists and officials. But the controlled chaos often obscures a hidden gem that’s open for free to anybody: the John Hancock Sports and Fitness Expo, one of the largest and arguably best in the world, at the Hynes Convention Center, with 200 exhibitors, from Adidas to ZipFit. Listen in on tips from world-class athletes, consult with experts about your own health and fitness, buy official marathon merchandise, and collect free samples of energy bars and drinks (mmmm). You’ll still have to dodge those runners—this is where they pick up their bib numbers—but they’ll stay out of your way. After all, they’re pretty spry. Healy

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There were barely more than a dozen runners in the Boston Marathon in its first year, which rose to 164 by 1909, but never exceeded 285 (in 1928) until the running boom began in the 1960s.

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