Besides crossing that finish line and getting medaled by a Marine, the other major highlight of the weekend was FINALLY MEETING SALT!!! A lot of people were surprised that we had never actually met up to that day considering how much we
obsess talk about each other. We “met” over 3 years ago (whoa!) on an online mommy’s group (our daughters are the same age ❤ ) and we’ve been friends ever since. I convinced her to start running and she convinced me to start blogging and the rest is BRF history!
I knew she’d be running a 5k that morning but I also knew she’d be done quickly (I mean, it’s Salt) so I expected her at the finish line. When I crossed, I checked my phone messages and there it was, one of her telling me she was there! I let her know where’d I’d be collapsing and she appeared magically through the throng of family supporters carrying with her a beautiful sign.
We squealed like schoolgirls and hugged and then she plopped down beside me and we started chatting like if we’d known each other forever. It. Was. Awesome.
I had zero doubts that I’d like her in person. We had “talked” to each other nearly every day through some sort of social media and texted each other occasionally. We were real life friends no matter the fact I hadn’t actually heard her voice (why we’ve never called each other, I don’t know. Oh, technology).
I was a hot mess after the race and wanted to get back to my room to shower so Salt gave me and my husband a ride. Around the block. Traffic was so dense that we spent 30 minutes getting a quarter of a mile. We decided to let Salt go 😦 so that she wouldn’t spend her whole day stuck in that awful mess. We shared a tearful goodbye with plans to meet again soon (we’ve got something up our sleeves) and I saw her go off in her little red Fiat into the sea of cars….
Other More Random Cool Stuff
One of the things that impressed me so much about the Marine Corps Marathon was the crowd support. I mean, I rarely, if ever, felt alone. Not only were there so many people cheering us on, many of them carried super funny, clever signs. Here are some good lines I somehow remember:
“Fine, Emily. We can get a cat.”
“Taylor, we just got engaged and you’re already running away!”
“Run like you’ve just been called a jogger!”
“Run like the Ebola vaccine is at the finish line!”
“Keep going–you’re not almost there! You’ve got a shitload of miles left!”
“Run like someone is chafing you!”
“Mike, I’m pregnant!”
“F*@k the friend that signed you up for this!”
There’s more but I can’t remember them. But seriously though, crowd support was AMAZING. There were several spots along the way with people handing out cups of beer, pretzels, candy, tissue (I took one), Vaseline–I mean, talk about support.
Another awesome moment was actually waiting for the race to start. A tent of Marines were selling coffee and hot chocolate pre-race and we stood in the long line waiting to purchase. I didn’t know how the hot chocolate would sit with me but I was so cold, I didn’t care. Anyway, the man in front of me handed the Marine a $20 bill and the Marine asked if he had anything smaller, to which the man replied, “Get as many people as you can with the change.”
Even the participants were super friendly. Not just in this instance, but throughout the race I saw runners concerned for runners, runners encouraging each other, runners just being their awesome selves. It truly was such a memorable experience. One that is worthy of putting on your “To Race” list.
Have you ran a race that was memorable? What made it so awesome?
Do you have an awesome Best Running Friend?