Sunday, October 26, 2008

Spectating Advice

Just got an e-mail from my friend J, who's running the marathon next weekend. In it, she mentions a few great spectating ideas, which I'm going to crib for this post, and add a couple of my own ...

-- Make sure your friends know what time you expect to run next Sunday, and just as important, *what time you start*. The wave start is going to wreak havoc on some planning (especially if you have people who are starting in separate waves.

-- Tell them what you're planning to wear. The more distinctive, the better. Give them some options (if it's cold, I'm wearing this, if it's pouring, I'm wearing this). Current weather forecast: showers, a high of 54, but that will change. If you've run the course before, and are comfortable with this concept, tell them what side of the street you're running on (this is especially important in Brooklyn, where the slightly different routes will have people running in different areas).

-- Give them some prime viewing locations. If you've got some really dedicated friends, get them up to the Bronx (the Bronx? They have a zoo there?) Getting that inspiration and support if you're hitting the wall around mile 20 is invaluable. Don't tell them to try to shout your name at mile 16 coming onto First Ave. It's a mob scene, lots of fun, but even if they can get a spot near the front, it'll be hard to see you.

-- Get some white tape and paste your name/nickname on your shirt. I've gotta say, I thought this was a stupid idea, until I realized that people were calling out the names of the people running next to me, and realized what kind of lift they were getting from hearing their names yelled by complete strangers.

-- Have your friends sign up for Athlete Alert, so they know when you've passed certain check points. Figuring most people have cell phones (including some of those running), so it's a good way to make sure folk are aware what's going on, especially if you're unexpectedly forced to stop.

-- Have a meeting point set near the finish; and then have a backup meeting point if it's a mob scene.

Anyone have other ideas?

1 comment:

Michael said...

As a runner, I always ask where they will be and on what side of the street. It is easy for them to miss me in the mass of runners, but if I can zero in on an intersection or block I can be sure to sneak up on them. But, I am not so much worried about my finish time.