I have a new profound gratitude for spectators—it’s hard work!

This morning the doodle and I were up and on the road by 5:45am to head down to the Spring Lake 5 Miler in Spring Lake, NJ. We met up with Lisa and her cousin Bill who lives nearby and then walked a few blocks to meet up with Elvia, Colleen and Luie.

Spring Lake 5 Miler

the first time i’ve ever been in a pre-race photo wearing jeans lol! (Thanks Elvia for the pic)

I stopped quick to pick up my tech shirt and commemorative glass. Hey! I might not have been able to run or get a medal but i did pay for this race and the swag that goes with it right? =)

Spring Lake 5 Swag

Spring Lake 5 Swag

A few minutes before the race started Duncan and I skooched out to the first few hundred feet past the starting line so once the race started we could see everyone before scooting up a few blocks to wait for them at mile 3. (I kinda like that I used “skooched” and “scooting” in the same sentence.)

The cutest, furriest spectator just patiently waiting to see some of his favorite runners…

cutest spectator ever!

cutest spectator ever!

Well the start was successful. I snapped a few shots of the first group of runners passing by…

photo 1-2 photo 1 photo 2-2 photo 3-2

Then I saw Lisa and Bill, and while I was calling out for them Elvia saw me. So i snapped this pic of her and managed to get Lisa and Bill in the background (although they didn’t see me or know i was taking the pic). Spectator lesson #1: Call out to your runner by their name and SHOUT IT for best outcome. I had a moment of panic when I saw Lisa and Bill and all I could do was say “Hey! Hi! Let me take your picture”. Only problem was I didn’t say ” HEY LISA, HEY BILL”. LOL! Luckily at least Elvia saw me.

starting

There they are!

Once they ran past, Duncan and I walked up a few blocks and got a good spot at the 3 mile mark to try to see them. Now when we arrived the lead male hadn’t even arrived yet so it was pretty empty. I set myself up on the outside of the turn so that I’d be able to get a good view as the runners turned the corner. Spectator lesson #2: Be specific to which side of the road you’ll be. I didn’t even think to discuss this with them and needless to say I missed EVERYONE!

Mile 3

Strangers at mile 3

I watched the front runners fly by, then the middle of the pack and then the back of the pack…. Finally I noticed the time. It was 9:11am. They started about 8:35. Surely they must have passed. With a bit of disappointment I decided Duncan and I better just head to the finish to catch them. But as we were about 2 blocks away I realized getting through the crowds of runners who had finished, especially with Duncan in tow, would be rather challenging. Just at that moment I got a text from Lisa that they had finished and were coming down the chute so I just stayed put. Spectator lesson #3: Pay attention to the time! I was so focused on making sure I had my camera at the ready I didn’t pay attention to my watch.

Good thing they found ME!!

cousins

Congrats to the cousins

the girls

Running Peepettes

It really was cool to be in the shoes of a spectator this morning for sure.

the spectator duo! (thanks Elvia for the pic

the spectator duo! (thanks Elvia for the pic

I don’t think I ever noticed how each runner has their own unique running form. And I enjoyed hearing one mom telling her small children to look out for daddy who should be passing by any minute. It’s a great thing when kids can be inspired by their parents healthy and active sport. I really was thrilled to have Duncan with me. He was quite a magnet and attracted many pet friendly people to give him some love.

When you really want to participate in something you just have to find a way to do it even if it isn’t in the way you wanted. I came home feeling happy. Just as happy as if I had run. Running races isn’t always about the actual running part….the social and energetic elements of race day were still there for me! And then the best thing happened. Lisa gave me her turkey sub sandwich (the race is sponsored by Jersey Mike’s Subs) Thank you Lisa for not only being a vegetarian but gluten free too leaving no chance in hell you could eat that sandwich!). So on the drive home duncan and I split it and all that remained was this little piece of lettuce…

little lettuce leftover

little lettuce leftover

After an early rise and 3 hours on my feet Duncan and I chilled on the couch for a few hours before heading back out this afternoon for a walk at the park. It started to rain within minutes of walking but we kept going and walked an hour.

wet doodle

is this just pathetic or adorable or both?

My ankle pain, weakness and soreness comes and goes randomly from hour to hour lately so while I was walking this afternoon it actually felt pretty good but this morning it was achy. And now I’m icing it!!!! Not that I’m counting but its’ now been 14 days since I last ran.

Hope you are having a relaxing weekend.

Any spectator failure stories? Any spectator tips? 

 

 

 

4 Comments

  1. Sooooo GREAT to see you and Duncan…he is a cutie. You are right, participating in a race isn’t always about the run..but the specators that come out and support their friends and family, the organizers of course, and the Fabulous Volunteers that make it all happen .. Thank You again for being there and taking pics.
    Love Ya Bunches

  2. First of all, you ABSOLUTELY are entitled to your swag!! Secondly, glad you were able to get out there and still participate, even if it was in a different capacity than you are used to!

    As for tips, I don’t have any “fails” since I’m the one running. My tip would be to make sure you are actually ON the course. Last Memorial Day, I was running the local 5K. Hubby and son set up in their chairs so they could “see” me pass. Except that they weren’t on the course…..and I’m not ever in the lead pack, so they should have noticed the faster runners as they ran on the intersecting street instead of the one on which they sat….but they were too busy on their electronics to even notice…..that was their “fail”!!!

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