If you can’t be an athlete, be an athletic supporter!

cheer

Since I can’t race this weekend, I decided to do the next best thing and go cheer on the people doing the RNR DC half and full marathon.  A couple of friends were doing the half, so last night I made a sign and set my alarm for 5:15.  A piece of advice, if you have to set your alarm for 5:15, it’s probably best to skip that second drink and go to bed before midnight.  If you choose not to follow that advice, don’t be surprised when you wake up looking like death.  After some confusion about which metro stop we should park at, Lawrence and I made it to the start of the race with about 10 minutes to spare.  I was seriously hyped up on adrenaline and caffeine.  There is just something about the start of a race.  I love the energy and excitement.  The music was loud and I might’ve started dancing on the sidewalk.  Be thankful you missed that.  We managed to find Jeremy in his corral and cheer him on at the start.

After that we headed back to the metro to take the train to mile 7.5 where we would cheer on all the runners.  We were cutting it pretty close and I was worried we would miss Jeremy, so I ran about a block from the metro to get to our spot.  I knew I still had some down time but was surprised at how much my ankle still hurt to run on. We made it a couple of minutes before Jeremy passed by.

jeremy1

Jeremy (in the singlet) looking strong!

 At this point, it was pretty chilly.  I spotted a group of people across the street from us holding Dunkin Donuts coffee cups.  I waited for a break in the race, crossed the road and accosted them.  Actually, I just nicely asked them if the DD was close by.  Luckily it was just down the street so we headed over.  I had a moment in front of DD.  It wasn’t pretty.  It may or may not have involved tears.  I really thought I’d be running again in a week or so, but now I’m not so sure.  Anyway, I pulled myself together, got coffee and returned to my cheering spot.

sign

And then I cheered.  A lot.  Very loudly.  The people around me were so happy they were stuck next to me.  I can’t help it!  I love encouraging people.  Everyone out there has their own reason for running.  People trying to complete their first half marathon, looking for a PR, raising money for a charity.  People coping with stress, coping with grief, coping with life.  Whatever their reason, I’m excited for them and want them to succeed.  And I like being one really tiny part of their day.

I was SUPER excited when we saw Rebecca and John.  They were running their first half and they looked amazing!  After some quick hugs, they were on their way and so were we, heading back to the metro to get to the finish.

randj

We managed to see Rebecca running into the finish and then hooked up with them both as they came out of the chute.  They couldn’t stop smiling.  I am so so SO proud of their accomplishment.  At one point Rebecca said, “I am NEVER doing that again.”  Funny, that’s exactly what I said after my first marathon and again after Marine Corps last year.  I told her to give it 24 hours, you never know.

finish

Congrats to everyone who raced this morning!  You are amazing!  Have a beer, you earned it!

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