Category Archives: marathons

The Shoes Run a Marathon…

and were kind enough to take me along for the ride.

We ran the Philadelphia Marathon on Sunday, November 23, 2008. Their first and my ninth. Now that my legs are less sore, I can say that all in all, it was a good time. Philadelphia does a nice job organizing a race. The temperature at start time was right around 30 degrees and didn’t get too much warmer by finish. By far the coldest marathon I’ve run.

The start was very easy to find, right by the Museum of Art on the Ben Franklin Parkway. Bag check was a breeze. They had a bunch of school buses lined up on either side of a park path, each manned with two or three volunteers. My only real complaint about the start was a lack of port o’johns. I got in line at 6:30 and got back out at 6:40 after the line failed to move more than a couple feet. I, and a bunch of other guys, ending up waiting to go until we got to the expressway bridge at mile two.

The crowd was awesome. People lined the city streets and cheered us on, many with their hands out to give a high five. That part is always fun, especially when it is kids. I also like looking for family members who show up throughout the course to cheer on a runner. This year, it was Karianne’s family. I saw them probably at five or six different locations. Very cool.

You can also almost always be guaranteed an irate driver at a blocked intersection. This time, it was a gentleman by Drexel University. I don’t know what he was screaming but he was not happy. The police officer standing post just smiled.

My shoes' first marathon

My shoes, marathon finishers

The shirt we received was cool, too. It had a course map on the back so every so often I would look at someone in front of me to figure out where we were on the course. Very helpful.

We finished right back by the start line. The food tent had soft preztels and hot soup. Awesome. The medal is pretty cool, too.

If you are so inclined, I highly recommend running Philadelphia. It is run almost as well as the Marine Corps but with a lot less people.

Social Objects Again…

I mentioned my 26.2 tattoo and how it starts conversations with other runners,and even some non-runners (“What does 26.2 mean?”). This past weekend I timed with a dad from the other team at my son’s swim meet. Being the middle of winter, my tattoo was covered but I did wear a fleece from the 2006 Annapolis 10-mile race. Immediately after introducing ourselves, he asked if I had run that race. Turns out he has also run it several times and the same years as I. As the meet progressed, we discovered that we both had run the Baltimore Marathon (and that we both did not like it) and that I had run the JFK 50 mile race the same year as his wife.
Our shared running experiences served as nice icebreaker and I am sure if we run into each other at other swim meets we will talk for at least a minute or two. Our shared social object has established our relationship.

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