Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Trials of Being a Runner's Fan

For the past few years, I have thoroughly enjoyed following around my good friend Annmarie as she has achieved numerous athletic milestones.

She has completed seven Boston Marathons, the BayState Marathon in Lowell and the New York City Marathon (I have been to six of the nine). Last fall, I saw her complete the Panama City Ironman, and this past weekend, I witnessed her finish at the Timberman Triathlon at Ellacoya State Park in New Hampshire.

Somehow, after she finishes, she always has way more energy than I do.

Annmarie Connors finishes the Timberman Triathlon.
Gilford, N.H.
August 23, 2009

You see, being a running spectator is hard work.

There are the countless hours scanning the crowd, looking for the white visor, the long hair, or the baby blue wicker shirt.

There are the intense moments getting the camera ready, aiming and capturing the moment.

There's the quick communication with the athlete. "It's really hot," was one refrain from her this past Sunday.

There's the jockeying for a good position among other faithful followers of their own athletes.

And there's the intense calculations to estimate when she would pass a certain point on the course.

At the end of the day, though, the effort is worth it, especially when Annmarie and her teammates cross the finish without injury.

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