It was a simply picture perfect fall weekend in DC, the kind that makes for spectacular photos and perfect racing conditions.
Race morning, Dad walked Mom over to the start so I could get a little extra rest following my long run the day before and I was grateful for that! Adam and I met Dad for some coffee and then headed over to the metro.
Mile 1 Viewing: Our first stop was in Roslyn to catch Mom around mile 1-1.5. It was a simple trip over and we were easily able to find the race course by the stream of runners and cheering fans. We spent about 15 minutes here cheering. I spotted Colleen, Maggie, Katie, and Mom, and loved seeing all of them off on their races!
Mile 5 Viewing: Next up, we decided that we could catch Mom at the Kennedy Center around mile 10. We took the metro over to Foggy Bottom and meandered back down to the race course. To our surprise (and excitement), we realized we would be able to see Mom around mile 5 just as the race course turned out to Rock Creek Parkway. Again, we saw Mom but she was less smiley this time…she expressed her frustration with a crowded race course, which bummed me out a bit.
Mile 10 Viewing: Next it was time for a quick bathroom stop at a nearby convenience store and then we walked over to the stretch around the Kennedy Center. We were here for a while before Mom arrived so we got to see tons of runners which was awesome. And yet again, I saw Colleen looking strong!
|Does he look familiar? Bart Yasso was across the road from us cheering!|
Mom looked great during this stretch and we even got a picture of her blazing by!
|Orange shirt is me, green shirt is Dad and white shirt |
on the course is Mom!
Mile 16 Viewing: We had a pretty amazing view at the base of the Washington Monument just as the runners turned up toward the mall. It was also a primo spot because this was the mileage where we planned to do a banana handoff for Mom. Yes, this was a high pressure event. Dad, Adam, and I each had a banana to ensure the handoff was successful and we followed Mom's instructions to pre-peel it. Little known fact about Mom is that she cannot open a banana - crazy right! By now the runner tracker was working so I was able to track Mom closely. A mile in advance, Adam was able to cross the road, which was no easy task with a constant stream of runners, and Dad and I spread out in case the first person missed Mom. I gave Adam a 2 minute warning (yes, this is like an NFL game!) and we waited. I spotted Mom before she turned the corner and since she was on Adam's side of the road, Adam was able to catch her to offer her a precious banana but she wasn't interested. We all turned and laughed about our well-orchestrated plan for nothing! We then decided that a few other runners might want a banana and within a nanosecond of yelling "who wants a banana?", they were gone!
|Runners as far as the eye could see!|
|Amazing views from the hills at the finish line!|
|Getting ready to cheer Mom in for the finish!|
While I know she wished her race experience had been different, we were REALLY proud of her!
For future spectators, how we metro'ed around:- Blue Line from Crystal City to Rosslyn for mile 1-2 viewing
- Blue Line from Rosslyn to Foggy Bottom-GWU for mile 5 and mile 10 viewing
- Walked up to Washington Monument for mile 16 viewing
- Walked across mall to Smithsonion area/base of 14th street bridge for mile 19 viewing
- Metro'ed from Smithsonian to Roslyn for finish line viewing
- Comfy shoes and weather-appropriate clothing
- Phone with portable charger for runner tracking and map capabilities
- Cheering "tools" like posters, balloons, bull horns, cowbells, etc.
Read Mom's Marine Corps Marathon race recap here and Marine Corps Marathon by the numbers here.
Ever spectated a marathon? Did it inspire you?