Behind every great race are amazing volunteers. Those people who hand you cups of Powerade at the water stops? Volunteers. The medical personnel that treat your blisters, cramped calves, and chafed nipples? Volunteers. The incredibly helpful and happy people at packet pick up that make sure you get your chip, t-shirt, and that all you have to do on race day is show up and run/walk? Yep, they’re likely volunteers as well. Having run numerous races, I’ve come to realize just how important volunteers are when it comes to having great race experience.
Yesterday evening was spent in Minneapolis at the packet pick up for the Get Lucky 7k and 21k (half marathon). There’s just something about a race expo that gets me all pumped up to go out and run. I love meeting other fellow runners, whether this is their first or 50th race. Since this will be my first year not running the half marathon since it started, I love reminiscing about races of years past, like last year when we were running in shorts and tank tops thanks to record heat (seriously, it was 80 deg on St. Patty’s day last year. In Minnesota. I shit you not). This year looks to be a little more winter like with snow predicted into tonight and temps in the 20s for race time. Brrr!!!!
Put on by Team Ortho, over 10,000 runners are signed up to take to the streets of Minneapolis and St. Paul tomorrow morning in their greenest St. Patrick’s Day running gear. I will be volunteering at the finish line med tent for the half marathon (21k) tomorrow morning. While I love chatting with other runners, I really really really hope not to see any of you there tomorrow, unless it’s grabbing a pint of Finnegans at the post race party!
For more information on how to become a volunteer for future Team Ortho events, click here. They offer great incentives, like bones to collect and use on race entries and awesome gear, as well as free gear like the awesome t-shirt I snagged that I plan on wearing Sunday when I get my BodyShred instructor certification. And ladies, the men of Women Rock are usually at the packet pick ups, providing lots of shirtless eye candy for your viewing pleasure at the Women Rock 10k and half marathon, which I ran last year.
If you want to see me have an anxiety attack, take me shopping on Black Friday. Irrational deal seekers, lacking basic parking lot navigation skills in mass quantities is something out of a horror movie. Zombies I can handle. An espresso-ed out soccer mom trying to get her hands on the last Wii U, you better stay out of the way of those perfectly french manicured nails unless you really love wearing a pirate patch every single day. So I avoid shopping on black Friday at all costs. Unless there is a running deal to be found.
So while the rest of America was camping out in the cold for a cheap tv, I was at home, snuggled up on my couch with a fire and glass of wine registering for next year’s races. FrontRunner, a company that hosts several races in Minnesota and Wisconsin, as well as the White Bear Grand Prix, a series I was an age group winner in a few times a couple of years back, offers half off all their races black Friday until Cyber Monday. At $15 a pop for distances ranging from 5k to 10 miles, this is just too good a deal to let pass on by. Not only do they host the Grand Prix, but they also put on two of the races in the UMTR trail series, the Chippewa 10k and William O’Brien 10 mile. So I may not have any gifts bought yet for my daughter, but my 2013 racing calendar is coming along nicely.
I might have also bought myself a Polar FT4 heart rate monitor. I was given the task of selling them during the YMCA black Friday sale today at work. My brainwashing worked a little too well, since I ended up replacing the one I seem to have misplaced. But at the end of the day, all my races and watch were still less than a 32″ flat screen tv. I think I did pretty good on my black Friday shopping spree!
On October 26th, one of my friends and fellow running moms, Sandra, was out for an early morning run with her good friend Amy when Amy was tragically stuck by a car and died almost instantly. They had taken all the precautions for running before dawn. They carried lights, obeyed the traffic laws. Some of my fellow running moms have organized a virtual run to raise awareness of runner safety and also to help support Amy’s family. My friend Hungrigyrl has written a great blog post with more information about the virtual run. I encourage you to check it out and help show support for a fellow runner and the family she was tragically taken from too soon. To sign up, go to Amy’s Awareness Run. You can make your donation through PayPal by sending it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you and stay safe!
According to the ticker on the Kansas City Marathon website, there are exactly 6 days, 8 hours, 39 minutes, and 44 seconds until the start of the race next Saturday morning. Cue anxiety attack. I’m under trained and have no idea where my brain and motivation have run off together too. Realistically, I know I can make it through, but it may not be pretty. Boston qualifying time isn’t even in the vocabulary at this point. While I’d had hoped to possibly PR, I’m going into KC using this as a training run and check point to see what needs to be done in the 2 months leading up to my first ultramarathon.
Here I am posting about signing up for the Fargo Marathon, and I totally realized that I hadn’t spilled the beans yet on my other marathon (so far) for 2013. A few weeks ago, the North Country Marathon in Manistee, MI was offering its Twitter followers early entry into its races as well as some amazing swag for being one of the first to sign up. If you notice on their website, 2013 registration isn’t even open yet. Yeah, I’m that cool that I’m already in. In addition to a finishers medal the size of my head (no really, 3rd largest in the country for marathons), a race t-shirt, and visor, they’ll be hooking me up with a training singlet, running shorts, and a jacket with my name on it. What can I say, I’m a girl. Give me clothes, and I’m in. Another huge draw is that there is camping just down the road if you get there early enough. I’m all for free lodging. In fact, I may even rent out the last two spots in my tent to some lucky folks. You can pay me in post race beers. Door access if it’s an import or microbrew. Come join me on the trails next August. With a half, a full, and an ultra, there’s a race for everyone.
3+ months left in 2012, and I’m already working on my 2013 race calendar. It’s not so much that I’m an avid planner (have you read any of my workout “schedule” posts). I’m just really cheap. If I’m going to do a race, I’m going to jump on it before the prices go up. 2 marathons on the schedule for 2013 and total damage to the checking account is only $150. No, not $150 each, $150 total for both. It’s like a marathon BOGO event! The latest race to be added to the calendar is the Fargo Marathon. Flat and fast, I’ll be gunning for a BQ. Prices go up Sept. 30th, so better hurry if you want to join me in Fargo. Hotel roommate applications now being accepted. Snorers need not apply.