Over the weekend Steve and I headed up to Green Bay to volunteer at the marathon as part of a cheer team for Team in Training. We got there on Saturday afternoon and headed to the race expo to meet up with the group. The expo was held at Lambeau Field, which was pretty cool.
We got to check out the field, which seemed way smaller in person than it looks on TV with a packed house.
This is probably the only time in my life I will be setting foot in here (unless I someday run the Green Bay marathon), so I captured the moment.
Saturday night was spent eating at the pre-race pasta dinner (only because we got free tickets), hanging out in the hot tub at the hotel, and drinking beer. In case you haven’t noticed, I did away with my clean eating for the weekend. I could not resist having a big chocolate chip cookie at dinner, they were just calling my name. And did I mention free? I enjoyed every last bite.
Sunday morning we awoke bright and early to cold temperatures and high winds, but at least it was not raining. I was so glad I was not running, because the wind was brutal, gusting up to 45mph. We met up with the rest of our cheer team and headed to our first station at mile 6. The cheer team’s responsibility is to cheer for every single TNT participant when they pass, and then move on to the next station. As you can imagine, we were out there for a while, with 50 or so participants in the half-marathon and 11 in the full. I was equipped with my Boston cowbell (I knew that sucker would come in handy) and a TNT sign.
I had so much fun cheering for everyone. Besides TNT participants, I actually knew quite a few people racing, and I cheered my face off for everyone. Our second stop was at mile 21. This was right at the end of a 5 mile long stretch for the marathoners headed straight into the ferocious wind. Many people were looking defeated, and many just pissed. I felt so bad for them, as wind has to be my absolute least favorite running condition. We cheered for everyone as they passed, and finally the last TNT-er came by.
We stopped briefly by the finish line to say goodbye to the TNT staff, and then it was time to head home. I was so exhausted that I promptly passed out in the car. I love cheering at races because I know how much of a boost it can be for the racers. I think all runners should go out and spectate or volunteer at a race to give back to the whole running community. Plus it’s a blast!
In other news: I am back on the sauce. My beloved coffee that is. And I don’t even feel bad about it because Dr. Oz says that coffee is chock full of antioxidants and up to 24 oz a day is good for you. I am going to try to stick to just one cup in the morning so I can learn moderation.
And finally, today is officially day 1 of Ironman training. I was up bright and early at 5:30am for a date with my bike trainer. Let the two-a-day workouts, perpetual exhaustion, and non-stop eating begin!
Have you ever cheered at a race?