Tuesday, October 4, 2011

A Spectator (For the Third Weekend in a Row): The Twin Cities Marathon

This past weekend was the 30th running of the Twin Cities Marathon, a popular fall marathon known for its cooler temperatures, flat course, scenic views, and crowd support. The last few years when I was living in Minneapolis, I would bike the Greenway down to Lake Calhoun to cheer on the athletes & look for local celebrities and running buddies.

This year was only slightly different -- I didn't bike the Greenway to Lake Calhoun. Instead I flew 3,000 some miles, drove 40 minutes, and walked another 15 to make it to the race. Granted, I was in the metro area for other reasons, but while I was so close to my old stomping grounds, I figured I'd stop by, hoot & holler for a bit, do a long run of my own, and spend the rest of the day with friends.

Some of the trees starting to change colors. <3

Good morning, Lake Calhoun!

Not long after staking out my spot at Lake Calhoun, the wheelchair racers came blazing through. This was the lead wheelchair racer being completely blinded by the rising sun.

Just a few minutes after the wheelchairs, the lead men came through. Mannnnn, they were flying.

Lead women

The Flash?

Early on in the race, my Big Sur friend, SF-touring buddy, and Hood to Coast Nuun Platuun teammate, Susan, came blazing through! Seeing her was the main reason I wanted to spectate at the race.

My hands were full as I wanted to snap a picture for Twitter while filming her come through, so it looks like I'm about to hand her my phone. I'm pretty glad she didn't steal it.


Susan ended up setting a new PR, finishing the Twin Cities Marathon in 3:18 (that's a blistering 7:35 pace, might I add), and finished in the top 100 women. Way to go, Susan!!

Sorry for the bum shot, Susan. At least you look good in those booty shorts. :)

Further behind Susan, I recognized another person slogging through the race at a decent, but much slower, clip. I freaked out, star-struck, and fumbled with my camera to snap a picture but it was totally too late. Do you recognize this man's fine behind?

DUH! It's The Ultramarathon Man himself, Mr. Dean Karnazes!
After all the TCM runners and walkers made it past my little cheering station, I set out on a 13.1 miler of my own. I was originally slated to run the Rock 'n' Roll San Jose Half Marathon back in California the same morning, but gave my entries away since I was out of town. I figured the least I could do is run my own half marathon in my old neighborhood. I ended up having one of my best runs in a long time around the tri lakes -- turns out that all that race energy rubs off, even if you're not racing.

13.1 miles/1:45:29/8:03 pace

Lake Calhoun

The infamous Lake of the Isles water monster.

I feel like all my race spectating has been a huge success (how can one fail, really?) and I totally love going to races & can't wait to do more of it! Next up, though, is finally race I intend on doing -- the Nike Women's Half Marathon. I'm looking forward to a casual race with so many of my friends.


  1. "...(how can one fail, really?)..." ummmmmm.....

    you got some great shots! and I love the video of Speedy Susan as she flew past you!

    and awesome on that FAST 13.1!!!!!! Cooool :)

  2. Wow!! Look at that half mary time!!!! Sounds like you had a great trip back home! I can't wait to see you next week for Nike!

  3. Sometimes it's really nice just to step back and take it all in :)

    Also, that flash video is hilarious!

  4. I didn't realize that you were going!! I love all of your videos and glad you had a good time!

    And yes, Susan is a bad ass!

  5. It was sooooo fun seeing you out there on the course and I think your video is fantastic! Backwards high five for the win! And I'm glad that I could finally beat Dean since he beat me in my first marathon five years go...ha!

  6. So fun that you got to see Susan run her PR in MN!!! WoW!!

    Enjoy your SF half!!! I envy your spectating!!

  7. LOOK ITS OUR DAMN IDOL THATS AMAZING! More amazing really are your eyes..

  8. p.s. I cant wait to seeeeeeeeeeee youuuuuuuuuuuuuu