Last year, I wrote this post about why I love the running community after the terrible attacks at the Boston Marathon. So many amazing stories were told in the months after, and it reaffirmed that runners are a strong community.
Yesterday, my mom and I went to cheer on a few friends at a local 4 mile race. We wanted to run 3ish miles before the race, but we ended up getting there late. We also somehow inadvertently matched and both wore our marathon shirts But we actually saw lots of runners in NYC Marathon shirts at the race, and I wanted to shout out to them all!
Since we got there late, we ran 1 mile out on the race course with runners, and then turned back to go watch the finishers. I found my friend as we were getting ready to go up a hill and ran up it with her before turning around. I also saw this man who sped by me…seriously how inspiring is this??
We turned back and I was really tired. I had to stop and walk a few times, not gonna lie…and this was only a 2 mile run!! So sad. But it’s to be expected when I haven’t ran since November. I’m not too worried about getting back into running shape.
So we got back a minute later than the winner, but still got to see the first few people crossing the finish. It was fun to actually be a spectator for once and cheer on other runners.
I really wish to be fast one day!
But the point of this post is why I love runners. As I stood there cheering on fellow runners, I noticed a lot of people doing the same. Not only cheering for their friends or family, but also cheering on everyone else. Runners cheering on complete strangers. Runners who finished their race and could go eat or go home if they wanted to, walking back and cheering on strangers.
We cheered and encouraged people to finish strong, or told them “looking good!” Runners of all ages, and all of them inspired me.
It just moved me to think of how this community stands by each other and supports each other, even if we have never met. And not just runners, but also non-runners who understand the passion behind it, and wake up early just to go cheer.
Whether it’s a small race like this one, or a huge race like NYC Marathon, spectators are awesome. Spectators are what kept me going in the marathon. Every step of they way they were yelling my name, and towards the end cheering even louder when they saw I was struggling. If you haven’t seen my NYC Marathon video recap, check it out below. At around 2:30 you can hear spectators chanting “PATTY AND TINA! PATTY AND TINA” for my mom and I, and it was just a moment I won’t forget.
This is why moments like what happened at the Boston Marathon won’t bring us down. It’ll make the community that much stronger.
Thank you to everyone, runners or not, who have ever cheered for me during a race. You have no idea how much it helps!
Thank you to spectators who support their runners, and wake up early just to go cheer on everyone else.
I can’t wait to be a spectator at this year’s NYC Marathon and pay it forward to everyone who will be running!
Do you cheer on fellow runners after a race? Or go to races to cheer?
Are you a non-runner spectator? Why do you like cheering on runners?
Lastly, who’s running Boston this year? It’ll be an unforgettable experience I’m sure!
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