Sometime back in May, Lucas' brother called and said something along the lines of "I'm fat and out of shape, you're fat and out of shape, let's train for and run a half marathon.*" So they did.
*I wasn't part of the conversation, but this is the condensed version that was relayed to me later.
Pre-race. Is it just me, or do they look a little nervous?
Truth be told, I wasn't as supportive as I should have been in the beginning. He started his training right after my ankle injury, and I was (to be frank) jealous. Turns out nothing makes you desperately miss running more than not being able to run at all. I had the same experience when I was on bed rest with the twins. So he was out running many miles while I was at home, stuck on the couch, trying to keep track of my energetic children. I was a bit grumpy...
At the start. Can you spot Lucas?
Thankfully, I got over myself and was able to jump in and be supportive. He was training to run the longest race of his life after all! After his training race (a 6k at the Nautical Festival), I remembered how much I enjoy cheering at races. It brought back wonderful memories from my cross country days, and I was suddenly so excited (a kind stranger giving us a cowbell may have helped - gotta love more cowbell!)
Logan at roughly the 5 mile point. He was #6 overall at this point!
After cheering them on at the start, we drove out to roughly the 5 mile point, an easy corner for us to get to that just happened to be at the top of a long series of uphills. We felt like it was a good spot to cheer on the runners...with some cowbell!
The girls taking turns with the cowbell.
We made it in time to cheer on the first runner, and only missed the last handful. Several runners thanked us for cheering them on, a few gave high fives, and one asked if we could take the trash he had been carrying for a few miles! I talked to a few runners later and they said that not only was there almost no one to cheer them on during the race, but at the point they saw us there also hadn't been anyone manning the drink stations!
There was a police officer stationed at our corner and our crew kept him company.
High Fives for D!
High fives for the camera!
Note: I wish I had kept my camera up to get a picture of Lucas trying to high five Ryan - who ran around and hid and made Lucas use up a few extra seconds trying to get him!
After we had cheered on the majority of the runners, we hurried back to the finish line - in time to see the first place runner (who was WAY ahead of everyone else - we assume he's a professional) and to see the runner who took the second place medal running the here, there, and everywhere BUT the actual 13.1 mile course (thankfully the guy who actually took second place talked him into giving back the medal that he didn't win).
Trying to keep the kiddos entertained while we waited...and waited...
Also fun, for us, was that one of our church members (who was one of the VBS volunteers, so we had been together all week) was also running the race! It was fun to see him, cheer him on, and keep his wife company!
Mr. Craig crossing the finish line!
I completely missed a picture of Logan crossing the finish line because they didn't have the fork marked very well at the end, so Logan took the road that wasn't visible from where we were standing. Suddenly, he appeared! And crossed before I had time to register that it was him, let alone get my camera in place! He finished faster than he hoped - even after his knee went out and he had to walk a mile!
The twins were getting antsy, so I took them up the final stretch a bit so they could watch for Daddy.
At the 6k, there were several kids who joined their parents for the final stretch and ran with them across the finish line. The twins remembered and were hoping to do the same for this race. I told them that if no one else was around Daddy (that he would be trying to beat), and if he was okay with it (i.e. not trying for a time-boosting kick), that they could maybe join him. It turned out that he wasn't racing anyone and was game for the company so they jumped in and joined him for the final .1 miles :)
Chasing Daddy and loving it!
Let's race, Daddy!
Crossing the finish line - with our whole crew to the left to cheer him on!
Note: see my Dad with the cowbell? When I complained that the finish line cheering was pathetic in comparison with the feat these runners had accomplished, my Dad took on ringing in all of the runners (except for perhaps the very last few...because we needed to leave). More than one runner expressed their appreciation for the cowbell.
His 2 goals were to 1) finish and 2) do the whole 13.1 miles without walking and he did! In fact, he finished 11 minutes faster than he anticipated finishing! Hooray!
Post-race - they look much more relaxed and happy!
While Logan wants to keep going and take on a full marathon (run, Logan, run!), Lucas is satisfied with this being the longest race he ever runs. I'm so proud of his amazing achievement! Hopefully, I can keep him running so he doesn't lose the amazing endurance he has built up!
All 3 of "our" runners post-race with their medals!
Personally, I think we should make this an annual event...who's in for next year? :)