Things I Learned Over Marathon Weekend

So I promised the “bestest post ever”. 

I really shot myself in the foot with that one, huh?  That may or may not have been said with a wee bit of sarcasm.  But now I feel the need to deliver.

Well.  Let’s see what we can do…

Because I do well with lists, here are a few important things I learned during the weekend of the Chicago Marathon (through the eyes of a spectator):

1. Inevitably, we’re all going to turn into our mothers.  Sorry peeps, it’s gonna happen.  The “family dinner” we had consisted of the three aunts and cousins congregating at D’Agostino’s for some decent pasta and pizza.  The cousins spent a lot of the time catching each other’s eyes.  As our mothers all chatted us  up in circles, we realized this is most likely a window into what our futures look like 25 years down the road.  Gulp.

2. To actually see someone running a 4:30 pace for a marathon is amazing.  I’ve seen sprints on tv.  I’ve read about crazy marathoners.  But to actually see these people run right past left me speechless.

3. You will never find a Starbucks when you’re actually hunting for one. Or even a coffee shop in general.  Amy had no caffeine or food until 3 hours after she got out of bed.  This is never ideal for the people who’s company I am keeping.  I had no shame in stopping everyone with a Starbucks cup and asking, almost accusingly, “where did you get that?!?!”.  I apologize to anyone I may have frightened.

4. People are crazy creative.  Or sometimes, just crazy.I can’t imagine running with this thing on for one mile.  And I’m going to assume the few guys with him were there to switch off.  Either way- that’s crazy.When I do races, I love reading the signs.  They can be hilarious.  This was one of my favorites.  On the other side, it said “I promise there’s beer at the end”.

We were creative in our own right.  My cousin had on a Missouri Tigers shirt and had her mom bring Mizzou flags to wave so she could spot us easier.  That’s right, we had a theme.  No party (or marathon) is a success without one.5. My cousin is an awesome runner!  At mile 11, she still looked like she was feeling amazing!Granted, this is only about half way through.  But I know I can’t run 11 miles and look so perky… :)  She did great and finished a little under 4:15!

6. Do NOT use the porta potty in the runner’s reunite area.  Or if you do- try to be one of the first to do so.  Not after hundreds of sweaty, smelly people used it before you.  When there’s no toilet paper.  And you consider getting out to use another one, but do you really want to wait in line to take your chances?  Granted there’s not much worse than poo hanging off the inside of the seat and trying to figure out if that’s drops of sweat or pee on the seat itself.  I knew I was doing all those squats for a reason.  I hovered like my life depended on it.  Knowing the condition of the toilet seat, it’s possible my life actually was depending on it…

7. Marathons are good excuses for blogger meetups.

First, I made sure to hang out to not only see my cousin, but to also see Pham!The kid was able to beat the heat and get a new PR!  Nice work, Pham!  Did you even see me the second time?  Doubtful.  For real- you were 2 feet away from me as I screamed at you. 

After the marathon, the family all left and I headed over to Megan‘s to celebrate Sunday Funday!  We ended up hitting McGinny’s– because who doesn’t love buckets of beer?I promise you, Megan loves the buckets of beer, too. Contrary to the picture.

We were also joined later on by a couple ladies who traveled to Chicago to RUN the marathon…Shelby and Angry Runner came to say hello (check out their blogs for their own versions of how the marathon went)!  I was so excited!  And not just because Angry was wearing some sweet hot pink compression socks (Christmas list, anyone?). 

One thing  you’ll notice when bloggers meetup- first, because it can be awkward, we talk about what we blog about.  Like running.  Plus the marathon had just happened.  It was a “duh” topic of choice.  But then you get a little more comfortable, possibly a little tipsy, and start talking about anything and everything.  For example, there was about five minutes dedicated to trying to figure out what “Like a G6″ meant.  Still clueless on that one.

If you know, please inform me so I may pass the information along.

8. Even if you don’t run, the Chicago marathon will be exhausting.  Between the early wakeup call, walking to multiple points of the course, the heat, the food, the drinks, and the late metra ride home, I was DRAINED.  But it was such a great experience!  I may not run it (although I’ll never say never), but I will DEFINITELY be going back next year to cheer on the runners.  You guys are amazing!

So there you go.  I hope this rises to the occasion as an “awesome recap post”.  But if it doesn’t, please understand it’s Tuesday.  And everything’s worse on a Tuesday…  :p


65 Responses

  1. No. 6: Gross. Just gross.

    Sounds like a fun time. The only thing that would have truly made this the best post ever is if you were wearing that Eiffel Tower costume. That’d be hilarious.

  2. Fun day! I’m jealous you were there in person, I watched the whole thing on my computer. I’m hoping to drag boyfriend to watch the NYC marathon this year. And who doesn’t love buckets of beer, can’t help you with the G6 thing though, sorry.

  3. There is a guy in NJ who runs races dressed as a lighthouse. Not the Eiffel tower by any means, but absurd. And really consistent!

    Anyway, totes jeal of your weekend – both the race and the company. I do not know what G6 is either, although I might guess. Oh, and as for using porta-johns, beware the wrath of runners if you are a non-runner trying to use the can at a race. I’ve been known to get aggro at spectators.

  4. Great recap! I have to say that the port a potty goes for any port a potty! I haven’t been to one that I didn’t feel that way about! YUCK! I hope it is a great Tuesday for you despite the fact that it is Tuesday. I am venturing outside of the house for the first time in 5 days. I am hoping it is gorgeous!

  5. If that douche in the Eiffel Tower can run a faster marathon that me, I’m calling it quits.

    And, I’m SO regretting not coming up for the race. Garr. NEXT YEAR IT’S ON.

  6. This was a great post! You did it!! :)

    The porta potty thing is gross. Those things are bad already, but add sweaty runners, ick.

  7. Great spectator recap! Maybe next year you and I will be running it together! Oh, wait……I’ll be running to catch up with you b/c you’re so speedy…. :)

  8. G6 is a type of private jet rappers/celebrities/rich people buy or rent out. So “Fly like a G6″ is the same as saying “Fly like a plane”.

  9. I am cracking up. GREAT post! The hover, totally, mile by mile those potties get right nasty.

    Eiffel tower? I mean, wth. That’s ridic. Love to know his time:)

  10. Just had the conversation about the G6 the other day. I thin kit’s a car, but I’m just guessing.

    Funny post =)

  11. ok, really…a 4:30 mile for a MARATHON?! i mean, i knew those people existed, but it makes me tired just thinking about it!

  12. i think this lived up to the hype :)

    love #3. SO TRUE.

  13. Definition from Urban Dictionary, probably a good source for this one:

    I try to not wear too much clothing when I run to keep from weighing down. I can’t even imagine the eiffel tower. Ridiculous.

  14. I totally just watched your friend Pham’s marathon video on Twitter! So random. I come to your blog and think “hey, that’s that guy!”

  15. Spectating a marathon – or any big race – sounds so fun! Definitely on my list of running things to do in 2011!

  16. lol @ #6. pretty disgusting.

    im sure G6 is like an airplane, but im pretty sure im also wrong. i only like listening to that song because of the retarded made up words…slizzer?! wtf?!

  17. Haha, thank you for the super flattering photo. ;) I’m pretty sure the face was in reference to the Cowboys game behind you. I would never defame beer with a nasty facial expression!

    I hear you on being drained- after you left we sat down to watch a movie and I fell asleep around 9:15. Rockstar, I know.

  18. I think the G6 has something to do with a plane. Just a guess.

    I’m so impressed with everyone who ran the marathon. It was such a warm day that I got overheated just walking around my neighborhood!

  19. 1. I have to say, there were a LOT of awesome signs out on the course. And seeing a Big Lebowski reference just makes everything better.

    2. The bathroom area at the finish was a mess to begin with, I can’t imagine how horrific it would have been after the race. Yikes.

    3. I love that nobody knows what the hell that song means.

    4. Thanks for the invite! It was nice meeting up with you guys – and particularly fun to meet someone when I’m staggering around half drunk in compression socks. :D

    5. I like this run down – I’ve actually never WATCHED a big city marathon, and now I kind of want to. ;p

  20. Buckets of beer, nuff said.

  21. Porta potties are the reason I don’t go to public events – I am not lying! Just thinking about having to use one of those makes me rethink things like marathons!

    I can barely run, nevermind run with the Eiffel Tower on my shoulders. That guy is either insane or a superstar.

  22. This was a great post because it showed your personality through and through. Like the porta potty. And the signs. I would have had the same reactions as you. EWW and LOL.

  23. Gross about the toilets – but I totally understand. I remmber from running the halves that the people who are in first place are like on mile 10 when you’re on 4. It is CRAZY!

  24. You’re so cute. I was kinda pissed when I ran my half & a spectator was taking FOREVAH to use the porta potty. I love when people do cool things like the Eiffel Tower but dang, it’s crazy. I love watching the elite runners.

    So I asked The Lover what he thought “Like a G6″ means and he said it’s supposed to be an airplane that may not have ever been put into production. I love that song but yeah, those Asians are cah-razy. JK but not really.

  25. Haha I love lists. I’m probably going to go out and watch the Marine Corps Marathon since its right in DC and it sounds like its fun to just watch it and not be running!

  26. Thank you for grabbing that awesome running shot. =)

    Best sign I saw this year was “If your nipples aren’t bleeding, you’re not running hard enough.”

  27. #3 —> Could not be MORE true. I drove through an entire STATE once with no Starbucks. I wanted to cry. Thanks a lot Arkansas!

  28. GO MIZZOU !! ;)

  29. haha great post!
    I totally agree that spectating is so fun and inspiring, but also exhausting!! Speaking of exhausting, I don’t know how people dress up (especially like THAT) for a marathon. I can’t imagine running a marathon let alone running something uncomfortably. They truly are a different breed of people who are able/want to do that

  30. I can’t believe some dude dressed up as the Eiffel Tower, it’s like he’s carry a baby on his back. Possibly 5 or so. Kudos to him though because I would be dying just carrying my own body weight, never mind something ridiculous like that.

  31. What a great time! I love lists so this post was ideal. That sign is just plain awesome and how the hell did someone run with that monstrosity on??

    Yay for blogger meetups if I ran 26 miles I would be like eff that I’m going to bed.

    PS I’m the same way without coffee.
    PPS Tuesdays that feel like Mondays suck more than normal ones

  32. The signs are my favorite part of running races. Ok maybe not my favorite, but close. I love them and they get me so pumped to keep going.

    Sounds like such a fun day!

  33. I have heard of so many people running Chicago this year – it looks like an awesome race. It might have to go on my list of ones to run! Great recap!

  34. Porta potties are pretty much the most disgusting things on the face of the earth. The end.

  35. What a great post! I loved the first lesson you learned…it is so true! But thankfully our mothers are pretty amazing people :-) And I have been there when you need a coffee, and there are no coffee shops in sight. How does that happen? Thank you for the recap of your weekend…it sounds like it was a great experience…and it is certainly one that I want to see sometime in my life (see, not participate) :-)

  36. how fun, amy! great post! I am signed up for a marathon in may but i definitely want to be a spectator first… i’ve never even been to one! sounds like an athletic event in itself!

  37. what the heck is eiffel tower thinking?? lol….the scary part is he’d probably kick my butt. :p

  38. […] on October 13, 2010 by Amy @ Second City Randomness I’m glad you all enjoy the “spectator’s point of view” post.  If you’ve never gone out to watch a race like that, I highly suggest you do […]

  39. […] met even more bloggers since Amy invited me out for beer! And I met Megan ! It was a great day for drinking beer and meeting new […]

  40. That sounds like a really great weekend. The eiffel tower is awesome. I think I might go watch it next year.

  41. I don’t know what “like a G-6″ means, but I’ve had that SAME conversation.

  42. haha I would have done anything to NOT use the porta pottys at a marathon. I bet that was terrible!

  43. Oh my gosh – you make this look more fun to be a spectator than to actually run the race! :-) I’m kind of embarrassed to say I’ve never watched a race. I need some friends to run in one so I can cross that off my list!

    BTW – LOVE your yellow scarf!

  44. Fun recap! I love seeing the elites fly by too. You just watch them in awe.

    What DOES G6 mean?

  45. […] this longer run, I wasn’t sure what to expect.  Because of busy weekends and um, stomach issues, I haven’t done much more than 5 miles in a session as of late.  But […]

  46. […] No spectating for me this year. But I still dealt with the masses of people spilling into the downtown streets. […]

  47. […] No spectating for me this year. But I still dealt with the masses of people spilling into the downtown streets. […]

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