As I’ve mentioned before, Victoria was training for this year’s Twin Cities Marathon before a bad stress fracture in her foot sidelined her. Victoria took the news (and the limited mobility created by her boot) hard, so I wasn’t sure if she’d want to watch the marathon on Sunday or not.
Turns out Victoria was up for it. She wanted to cheer on the runners and hopefully catch sight of her new colleague Mike, running his first marathon (we did see him and he looked great!). We made our way to Summit Ave around 2 hours after the start of the race, in time to watch the elite runners do their thing.
It might shock you to know I’m not a big fan of running. Several years ago I ran a half-marathon, just to see if I could do it, and I decided that was enough for me. The constant pounding was really hard on my body, and I never experienced the (mythical) euphoria of a runner’s high. It probably didn’t help that I run incredibly slowly, so my long runs were REALLY long runs.
The wheelchair competitors were incredible. We saw several wheelchairs pass by, and you could almost feel their arms burning as they turned their wheels, willing themselves up the hill.
This lady kept stepping into my shots, so finally she became the shot.
Here’s another innocent bystander.
While I’m happy with how these shots turned out for my first attempt, as I processed them I noticed little things here and there that I’d do differently next time. I need to do a better job attending to the background of my shots, and I’d like to ride my bike to catch several different locations throughout the race route.
The marathon route passes right near Macalester’s campus around mile 23, which is “the wall” for most people. It doesn’t help that this section is also a relatively long uphill stretch from the Mississippi River towards the finish in downtown St. Paul. While the elite runners didn’t seemed too taxed by the hill or the distance, some of the runners a bit farther back in the pack looked to be feeling the challenge.
And while some struggled, others seemed to be feeling REALLY good, even doing their best to get the crowd pumped up as they ran past.
It was a gorgeous day for running. A little windy but full of sunshine, the temperatures hovered in the 30s and 40s throughout the morning. While some people were bundled up for the cold, others seemed to be wearing next to nothing…with gloves, of course.
After a while, as the pace times ventured into “mere mortal” territory, the number of runners passing our spot multiplied. With so many runners to choose from, I focused my attention on interesting outfits, messages on people’s shirts, or fun color combinations. It was fascinating to see how people chose to distinguish themselves, or what message they wanted to carry with them on their journey through the cities.
And, while all the outfits and positive messages were wonderful, this shirt was far and away my favorite. Pretty much sums up my thoughts.
I know this post is picture heavy, but if you’d like to see more photographs of the Twin Cities Marathon and its runners, click here for a flickr slideshow of my shots.