BOSTON (CBS) — Meb Keflezighi couldn’t defend his Boston Marathon title this year, but he still managed to run a race that was memorable and nauseating.

The eighth-place finisher told WBZ-TV he vomited during the race – five times.

“I stopped five times during the race after mile 23,” Keflezighi said. “I threw up.”

“You threw up during the race?” WBZ-TV sports anchor Steve Burton asked.

“Five times, oh yeah,” Keflezighi said.

Meb Keflezighi Interview

But you wouldn’t know he was feeling under the weather by the way he finished.

Sprinting down Boylston Street, Keflezighi saw an opportunity for sportsmanship. He caught up to elite women’s runner Hilary Dionne, and the two Americans joined hands as they crossed the finish line.

“I had to sprint to catch her and make that happen,” Keflezighi told WBZ-TV. “I was hurting pretty bad, I was very emotional on Boylston Street, crying.”

Even though victory was out of reach, Keflezighi said he decided to try for a special moment.

“I saw her and I said, you know what?” he said. “To be able to help her get to the finish line, holding hands was just an amazing experience.”

It was the shouts of “Go Meb!” from the crowds that kept pushing him, he said.

“They helped me,” Keflezighi said. “It was just an amazing experience to be here.”

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