On Sunday, I did a bit of a role reversal. I went out and cheered runners on in the Army Ten Miler rather than racing myself. I had a blast, but boy do I have a whole new level of respect for fans trying to pick out their runners among the crowd in large races.
I knew a handful of runners including friends that live in the area, an Oiselle teammate (who unfortunately I didn’t spot), bloggers that I follow (Congrats Ashley on a great race!), and my future sister-in-law Adrienne (her 1st race longer than a 5k!) and her sister Courtney. I printed out a course map and a list of starting times for the different waves to carry with me and help me plot out a plan for watching the race.
I woke up bright and early Sunday – something usually only reserved for my own race days – and got ready for the day. I took a bikeshare bike from Court House to Rosslyn where I walked down to Rt. 110 to see the runners between the 1 and 2 mile mark as they looped by Arlington Cemetery up toward Memorial Bridge. I made it in time to see the Wounded Warriors come through first – so inspiring – followed by the race leaders.
I’ve run some pretty large races over the years, but seeing the waves and waves of people running was unbelievable. Granted I was at an early spot in the race, but seriously it was elbow to elbow and never let up for the 40 or so minutes I was there.
After spotting Adrienne and Courtney and cheering them on I made my way back to the Rosslyn metro – with a quick hot chocolate stop at Starbucks first. It’s not nearly as warm watching a race as it is running one!
I got off at the Smithsonian Metro and met up with another Oiselle teammate to cheer on runners near the turnaround on Independence Ave. Unfortunately I missed everyone I knew at this point. I’m not sure if my hot chocolate stop made me get there a few minutes too late or if I just missed them in the crowd, but I still tried to offer encouragement to as many runners going by as I could! I’m really glad I made it out and had a lot of fun being on the other side of things for a change.
I also spotted this during the day making me super pumped for MCM…