Ahh the Capital City Marathon. I will look back fondly on this race for ever.
It was the first race that John and I ran together. Side by side together, mind you. Oh wait, we did a 5k together… So first marathon side by side.
Also, instead of a race shirt we were given very nice coats. I am wearing mine currently.
And instead of a medal at the end, we were given coasters. Not medal or stone or plastic coasters. No, at the end of the marathon we were handed fragile tile coasters. Mine survived, so did Johns (I carried his).
John too, survived though it was iffy at times. Two in two weeks is not a walk in the park (more like a day long jog in the park).
We started slow in the back of the pack. Plenty of lovely people to talk to back there this time. ’Road Kill’ Rick kept us entertained for a good distance, while Kerrie (new to me) inspired us by trying her first double marathon. I have no doubt she finished. She left us in the dust, as did ’Road Kill’ before the halfway point.
John has been having some pain problems. It seems his IT is trying to pull his knee off. I imagine it is time for him to find a good body worker to keep things moving. I actually think it is way past time for that…but time is the issue.
Anyway, I have heard many people say what a beautiful course this is and the rumors are true (now that’s a nice rumor). We started in a park in the downtown area and worked our way out along the capital lake, after that we seemed to be in the boonies, and from their we ran through farmland. There was a great fence that had bowling balls topping each post. It is the perfect time of year to do this race, flowers of every sort were blooming. And of course there were rhododendrons at every turn (the Washington state flower).
After the farm land we worked our way back into civilization. We saw some really nice neighborhoods and found so many locals set up along the course to cheer people on. Some of the locals were family. John’s sister lives in the area and she, her husband, John’s brother and mother all made it out for the event.
His sister and her husband made signs and spent the better part of the morning cheering. She and her husband came equipped with cowbells and a sign that read “more cowbell!” This was a big hit with many runners and prompted a few to start reciting the SNL skit. (On a side note, his sister really enjoyed being out with all the runners and is talking about training for a 5k!!! We really can influence people by smiling and thanking them for their support.)
John was looking pretty hurt when we finally made it to his families section of the run. His sister jogged along with us (in flip flops) for a few blocks offering encouraging words, all of which were rendered worthless by how easily she could keep up (IN FLIP FLOPS!!!). John forced a somewhat convincing smile and we continued our death shuffle. But the support did the trick, he was in much better spirits for the rest of the run. Not in good enough spirits however, that I felt I could start singing and dancing again without taking my life in my hands.
About 1.5 miles from the finish I informed John that we really shouldn’t let Negative Nancy beat us. She is a speed walker I met in Yakima at the pre race dinner that was complaining that she wanted to stop doing marathons but that this had become her social life. I see her at many of the local races and have tried to avoid her since this first conversation. No need for extra negativity in life. Each time she caught up with John and I she rained a bit of negativity on us. The first time she did this John looked at me with an expression of complete astonishment. People are typically encouraging and will cheer on an aching runner, she really makes an impression. Also, for what its worth, I don’t think her name is Nancy. I don’t actually know what her name is.
The idea appealed to John, his death shuffle turned into actual running, and then sprinting (what passes for sprinting at the end of a marathon). And I struggled to keep up. And he kept pushing the pace till the finish…and he reached back to grab my hand before crossing the finish line…awwwww