I love a marathon.
I really love spectating a marathon on a beautiful day - instead of racing it. Waaaay easier. This past weekend we headed south on I-35 to spectate the LIVESTRONG Austin Marathon. Oh, I'll take any excuse to head to one of my favorites places. There was plenty to do in Central Texas but let's start with the marathon. Now, I've never run the Austin Marathon. Mostly because it's usually the week before Cowtown Marathon and well, two marathons in one week is a little much for me. Also? Um, it is hilly there. In fact, that's where they hills live. They are alive in Austin, Texas!
We took our time getting our act together on Sunday morning and finally headed downtown to secure a parking spot and stake our claim to a piece of curb to spectate the crap out of the race. Austin wasn't going to know what hit it. Zomg, such a beautiful day! Sunny, not a cloud in the sky, and cool but not cold. Now, if I was running, I'd like it about 10 degrees colder, but for spectating, (and let's face it, it is all about me) mid forties was perfect weather.
Lead dude for the half. Now, how do I get that cycling gig?
There really weren't many spectators at mile 11ish. And the ones that were there were pretty quiet. We fixed that pretty quickly - when we spectate, we mean bidnaz. Signs, yelling, plenty of cowbell and good golly Pete, one of us has the most incredible eyesight ever - like a freakin hawk. He can read names off a bib from 100 yards. One group of people commented, "Y'all sure do have a lot of friends running today!" Ha! I'm pretty much blind so unless their name was plastered in a huge font across their chest, I just called out, "Go Emily! Go Meghan!" because those seemed to be the most popular names of the day. You might think I'm kidding but you'd be wrong. I called everyone Emily.
We did see one really funny sign.
Oh yeah, that is totally being recreated for the Dallas RnR. I always park myself at the top of a really long climb for that race. This is totally happening. Good job, lady with the cute pink scarf.
But let's face it, one of the best signs was this one. Now, before you go hating, click here for the story.
Yup, that's right, the whole reason we were spectating was to see my girl, Katie, from Run This Amazing Day.
Katie in front of the state capitol. When I commented that I wanted her to pose here, The Cyclist said, "Be sure to tell her that the Texas Capitol building is taller than the nation's capitol building."
Yup, everything is bigger in Texas!
We soon caught up with Ms. Katie, after she smashed the half. Found her sitting near the finish and the first thing she said to me, "I didn't know it was so hilly!" Ooop, sorry bout that. It was soooo good to see her! And how cute is she in her SOAS running gear? Very, the answer is very cute.
Moar photos. Gotta love meeting up with another blogger, always game for photos!
After she collected herself, we made our way back to mile 26 ish, at the top of a particularly steep, rude hill. She had two friends racing the full so we set out to spectate them, too. Now, I am obsessed with Grumpy Cat, it's true. Her little frowny face cracks my pink butt UP. No, really, I am crazy for this cat. I want to meet her and pat her grumpy little head. So what better visage to plaster on a race poster than Tardar?
Our signs were a HUGE hit. It brought me great joy to see a runner, clearly beaten down by the distance and that hill, oh, that cruel hill, see the sign, smile and start running again. One man, grinning, said, "I'm doing it for Grumpy Cat!" as he started running again. Oh mah guah, the best feeling! I love spectating and I love being able to bring even a small amount encouragement to a tired runner. I know how much it means to me to hear my name or see a funny sign to temporarily take my mind off my task. Seriously, if you've never spectated a race, what are you waiting for? Go out and do it now!
But it wasn't just the runners that thought we were hilarious. Oh no, people were stopping right and left to make our picture. Strangely, most without asking. I'd look up and there was a lady with an iPhone trained on us, snapping away, just a couple of feet in front of us. Okay now people, either be more discreet or just ask. I'll say yes! (and for the record, I did ask the lady earlier in the post - after she asked to make my picture, ha!)
The Grumpy Cat Brigade
Spectating is always fun but the highlight was seeing Katie race and catching up with her. The internets have brought some very special people into my life and she is at the top of the list! Sooooo good to see you, Katie! Next time, your state!
What was one of the funniest signs you've ever seen or made?