Friday, March 29, 2019

One Hundred Marathons of Solitude


In 2006 I allowed my siblings to set me on the slippery slope of running a marathon.  For lots of reasons it was a dissatisfying experience.  I reasoned however that perhaps, under different circumstances, a marathon could be more satisfying.  I tried it again ... and the activity became a staple of my existence.

After running marathons for a few years, an idea was hatched: complete marathon #100, in my home town, 50 years after high school graduation.

As I near #100, age is letting me know there aren't too many more of these events up my sleeve.  It has, nonetheless, been a wild ride.  I hope to hit #100 this fall.  In the meantime, here is coverage of this year's marathons.

#95 - Los Angeles (did NOT prove too much for the man)

I first ran LA last year.  It is by far the largest field I've run in.  In 2019 there are 23,000 runners.  My division, this year and last, had over 180 runners.  I sometimes run marathons with a smaller field than that.
Awaiting start
Approaching drop off point
And they're off
Filling the streets
Pacer carries flag in harness
Disney Concert Hall
Woman pushes cart with girl.  Earlier there was a dog attached.  I didn't think to see if it was in the cart.
Humor with Spanish 'J'
At my age ... I can only DREAM of running like a cheetah.  Sigh.
One of the nice neighborhoods
Almost to the finish!
Shortly after the finish: Our Lady of Perpetual Endurance Events

#96 - Wenatchee (magical sequencing on a 10 mile loop)

The event is part of the Apple Blossum Festival.  The scenery is dazzling: blossums in the foreground, snowcapped peaks in the background.  There were three starts: early marathon, at 6:30 am, half marathon, at 8:00 am, and the combined marathon and 10k, at 8:15 am.  Not only the times, but the directions, are carefully thought out, to minimize conflict, for the runners, and logistics, for the organizers and volunteers.

The start, for all, is at the plaza at the convention center, on Wenatchee Ave.  From there one goes north, ties into the trail, and continues clockwise.  And then various things happen, depending on ones distance.  For the marathon, one goes out 5k, returns (to rack up 10k), then continues, counterclockwise, for two laps on the 10 mile loop trail.  The trail has great variation in terrain, scenery, people and ambiance.  It's always exciting.

There's a reason it's call the Ten Mile Loop Trail

The scenery dazzles runners, every step of the way!

The snow capped peaks of the Cascade Mountains loom in the background!

There are three bridges as part of the Ten Mile Loop.

Pedestrian Bridge over Columbia River
Climbing up to US-2 Bridge

Pedestrian Bridge over Wenatchee River, where it enters the Columbia River 

In addition to the many residents using the trail, for walking, running and biking, there was an MS run.  Never a dull moment!

Blogger nearing finish, listening to just the right tune!

The plaza, at the Convention Center, on Wenatchee Ave, is a great setting for the finish.

Perennial podium dweller, and all around nice person, Carla Stewart

#97 - Wisconsin (Kenosha)

This marathon had intrigued me, ever since I learned of it, a few years ago, for a collection of silly reasons:

  1. The course is barely in Wisconsin (tucked away in the SE corner of the state)
  2. The event has a cheesy theme
  3. The organizers are from Chicago

Kenosha is considered the northern limit of the Chicago metropolitan area.


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