Attention Marathon Runners: Volunteer!

I was supposed to be running my 13th marathon today.

Instead, I volunteered for my 1st marathon.

And volunteering for Twin Cities Marathon  was a great experience.  Every marathon runner should have to volunteer for a marathon.  It gives you a different perspective.  Not just on the magnitude of planning and detail that goes in to a marathon – because I do think that most marathon runners already know and appreciate that.  The word that I’d used to describe how volunteering for Twin Cities Marathon made me feel is connected.  I felt connected to complete strangers who had just finished their first major race.  I felt connected to my fellow volunteers, who told me their stories of who they were supporting/watching today in the marathon (one lady’s daughter was from Omaha and running her first marathon with her boyfriend, with a goal of under 5:00 – I looked her up, 4:58!  Woot!).  I felt connected to my fellow running friends, who stopped by the finish line info booth that I was staffing and chatted with me about their races.  I felt connected to my past – today I saw runners finish their first marathon, saw runners BQ and saw runners limping down the last stretch of John Ireland Blvd toward the finish line with tears in their eyes – and for all of these people, I thought “been there, done that”.  And this feeling of connection to the running community was SO necessary for me – on Day 91 of no running because of my stress fracture.

Lucky marathon #13 will come soon enough.  And in the meantime, participating in the marathon in the way that I did today gave me the inspiration, motivation and hope that I needed to continue to heal.

 

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4 Responses to Attention Marathon Runners: Volunteer!

  1. Dory spence says:

    Great insight!!
    Mom

    • Thanks. I really was ok for most of the day. The only part that was really a downer was walking back to the condo about the time the 3:45 group was arriving and not seeing any bright pink Runnin-From-The-Law signs or ANY people cheering – and knowing that was about the time I would have normally been passing by. Next year!

  2. Angela K. says:

    Sorry I missed you! But glad you got some inspiration. And thanks for volunteering. I always volunteered at races when I was pregnant and found it strangely more exhausting than racing!

  3. Dan B says:

    Cindi –
    Thanks for your encouragement on course yesterday. Every time I saw someone I knew cheering, I felt a little bad for every race that I didn’t go to and cheer and/or volunteer. It’s hard to put words to the value of all that encouragement, but I’m sure there is a great life lesson in there – and you verbalized a part of it. I like your word; connected. Good job!

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