Sunday the DRC held their biggest race of the year, their annual half marathon. Several of our super cool friends were racing so all of us broken people (i.e. not running) decided to spectate the crap out of this race.
So we met super early and were rolling before the sun was up. That's right, we rode to the lake and negotiated the course by bike. But first we had to fuel. And what better way to fuel than with donuts? Oh, I love cycling. You can eat anything and still ride!
Tough choices for Heidi and Brian at the donut shop.
After a week of NO activity at all (and three weeks of only yoga and swimming before that) it felt GREAT to be back on my bike! We intended to take it easy, but we averaged 22 mph on the way to the lake. Um, awesome. I love that feeling! It was so early, there were very few cars on what is normally a busy road. Such sweet freedom to cruise the streets with your friends before the rest of the community is awake. A smile plastered on my face, I pedaled hard. We climbed a
long seemingly never ending hill and stopped to consult my cue sheet. I looked over, saw this and gasped. Worth getting up early for - every single time.
It wasn't long before we were on the course at our first designated cheering spot, at the top of a long hill around mile 4.5. We arrived with plenty of time and set about the business of freezing. We hadn't considered how cool it would be once we stopped moving. Plus, we were wet with you know, sweat and all. Ew. We kept our eyes on the sun, making a point to stand in its beams as soon as it started to shine!
Curbs make great kickstands. Truth.
There was an early start for runners anticipating a finish greater than 3:15. It was fun to see them huffing up the big hill only to be greeted buy a group of silly geese on wheels. Spectathletes, this group. We made sure to call out the names we could read from bibs when we could make them out. We are nothing if not experienced at the sport of Spectathlon. We got to see the lead runners. I held a sign that read, "I think you're winning!" and these two really were!
We spotted all of our runners at this spot - but MK made the best picture. She looks so happy to be running!
We hit up Mile 6.5 as well, but only saw MK. The others were too far ahead so then we zoomed to mile 10.5 Where we set up temporary camp. Here you see Ninja greeting runners.
Tri-besties playing cyclist. Such a gorgeous day to be on the bike! The weather was perfect - cool and sunny. Heidi and Brian ran MCM last weekend and Ninja just cycled 210 miles a few weeks ago. We were all hurting a little bit but just so glad to be out for fun. Heidi and I played the "I love" game where we took turns shouting out what we love. "I love the sound the leaves make as they crunch under my wheels!" So much fun.
We managed to see two of our runners at Mile 10.5 but wanting to see all of them finish, we quickly took off again and headed to the finish. Here is what I know, spectating a half marathon you have to be quick. Those kids run fast! We managed to beat them all to the finish (shortcuts available only to bikes, yo) and set up, ready to holler our heads off.
Me and Ninja and The Cyclist. Yep, that's his head on a stick. We take our Spectatloning seriously.
The Cyclist sprinting towards a strong finish.
I don't know this runner but those pants...pure awesomeness.
We saw every one of our runners cross the finish - many new PRs were set. It was a great day for racing! We had so, so much fun negotiating the course and surprising our friends along the course. It's incredible how even a stranger's face will light up at a humorous sign (I had several) or just hearing a kind word. Spectating is more fun than racing - it is certainly less work! (although our hands did get sore from clapping) We yelled and whooped and cheered and even jumped up and down at times. (turns out I can jump and run pretty quickly in my new cycling shoes, who knew?) But this was just a dry run for next month - the Big Show, Dallas Marathon. We've got plans for that race.
If you have the chance to spectate - do it. Bikes get you around the course with ease, places cars can't go, but even if you're on foot, it's totally worth it. And if you're lucky, one of your runners will help you taste some of the offerings from Beer Jail!