After coming off a PR on Saturday, I went out to Saint Charles, IL on Sunday to support all of my friends and running club teammates that were running the marathon. Me and another friend decided to bring our bikes so we could cover more distance and see people more often. It turns out that there were 4 of us spectating together - me, my friend, a friend of hers, and my track coach whose wife was running the marathon.
My running club had our own tent set up so I went there beforehand to wish them all good luck. The weather was perfect - in the 50s. The 4 of us went to the start, and watched all of the groups get sent out individually. After the last group had gone through the starting area, we got on our bikes and biked along the street at miles 2 and 3. I didn't spot anyone from my running club, but Bobbi was easy to spot. She was practically glowing in her orange shirt. I yelled good job to her, but I don't know if she heard.
We got to mile 6, got off our bikes, and cheered some more. At this point, we saw everyone in the club go by. They were all looking good, lots of smiling faces. We stayed at this spot for a long time to wait for the runners through the 4:30 group. When they passed, we continued biking and reach the trail at mile 10.5 and 17.5. We got there just as the 3:40 pacer was going past, which meant we missed many of our friends. However, we stated there and saw them on their return loop. Most of them continued to look good and strong. I ran alongside my friend D, wife of the track coach, for a few minutes, offering her gatorade and shot bloks. She took some, but needed me to get open a ziplock that had salt tablets in them. It was hard to get open, but I did. She was good then, and I ran back to our spot on the path to watch for one more teammate.
We got back on our bikes and returned to the finish area to see all of our friends finish. After locking up our bikes, we went to the finish and were just in time to see the 3:05 pacer finish. Next came a few other friends, all looking strong as they went into the finish. It was neat to see everyone finish. A part of me wished I was out there, too. After watching, and watching, and cheering for everyone while taking pictures, my training partner who ran the race came over. She was so happy, and I was just as thrilled for her. All of my friends did so well, which made me incredibly happy. As we were talking, I spotted Bobbi across the finishing area, and went over to tell her good job.
Bobbie was not there by herself, but with Britt, too. It was fun to meet them in person. Surprisingly, Britt lives in the same suburb as I do. It is always nice to meet other runners.
Spectating at Fox Valley got in me excited for the Chicago Marathon. I'll be working aid station #2 (at mile 3), and then cheering at other places on the course. I'm so excited to experience the excitement of a marathon again in a few weeks.