i had actually toyed with the idea of running the fall distance frolic (notwithstanding the staten island 6 hour run the day before), but i came to my senses when we pulled into the parking lot. instead, the better (and equally as fun) option was to participate as a volunteer. following on the heels of the norwalk half marathon, it was my second race as a volunteer in as many weeks!
like norwalk, there were many familiar faces running the race (dawn, don, joe, and kate to name just a few). don actually switched race plans that day, having planned to run the niantic half marathon initially, he opted for the 30k instead. dawn, after the 30k, went over to darien and ran the 10k that afternoon! and joe, doing the course as a training run - wore new pair of running shoes and paid the predictable price - blisters.
emmy, rob, and i helped marty's dad set-up and man the aid station at the 1.2 mile mark (conveniently located just in front of marty's new house). there was a second aid station a few miles further along the course, and more aid at the start/finish area. the course consisted of three laps of the 10k loop. for the first loop we only handed out water. then rob and i filled the water cooler with gaterade and offered the runners a choice for the second and third loops.
after the runners completed the first loop, emmy and i ran the course. i took my camera along, took some pictures, and finished the loop in 57:08. when we got back to the aid station, it was rob's turn to do a loop of the course - and emmy joined him. don had just passed the aid station so they caught up with him and ran together. before they had gone too far, kate reached the aid station and i told her they just passed through. she caught up to them and they ran together all ran together for a bit.
after the final wave of runners came through, marty's dad and i broke down the aid station. i had planned to drive emmy's car back to the beach - but i couldn't find her car keys. instead, i hitched a ride back in the truck - and picked up the cones and signs marking the course along the way back to the beach. just as we arrived, the horns and sirens of a fire engine, police cars and ems truck broke the morning quiet.
one runner, it seemed, had collapsed from the heat when she reached the beach. she was looked after by the ems volunteers and seemed to have recovered. i saw rob, who had run the last portion of the loop with kate, and he told me emmy was just behind them. when i told her i couldn't find the car keys - she told me, sheepishly, that she had them with her (in her jacket - which was tied around her waist)! so she and rob jogged back to to get the car.
post race festivities included pizza, breads, brownies, cookies, bananas - tons of good stuff. the interesting news of the day was the possibility that stratford may become the permanent fall distance frolic location - with a return to fairfield for the boston blow-out in march. while the beachside location as a site for the boston blow-out doesn't offer any meaningful protection from the vaguaries of late winter weather, it's ideal for the late summer race.
check out the race photos and results.
check out emmy's volunteer report and photos.
next up: the nyrr marathon tune-up 18 miler this weekend.