Long Beach Marathon Spectator Review + Last Week’s Runs

Kathrine Switzer, the first woman to run the Boston Marathon, said “If you are losing faith in human nature, go out and watch a marathon.” She’s so right. Yesterday Marta and I spent the morning supporting Brent, Lesley and Ellen at the Long Beach Marathon and Half Marathon.  There’s something about watching your family and friends challenge and push themselves. I am so inspired and so proud of all the runners.

Yesterday Brent and Ellen PRed in their events and Lesley finished her first marathon! Marta and I spent the morning running around trying to catch glimpses of all of our runners. We ended up logging nearly 11 miles as spectators. Crazy huh?! It felt like a fartlek trying to see everyone at various points throughout the race.

Our morning started at 4:30 AM. Brent was as chipper as ever, laughing, eating bagels, drinking coffee as we drove to Long Beach for his first full in five years. I wish I was this relaxed before a race. Brent, what is your secret? This is us at at 6:00 AM before we sent him on his way for his 26.2 mile journey.

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I ran into T from Back on My Feet after the marathon start. She completed her first half yesterday!

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The course was well designed for spectators. Mile six returned back towards the start so Marta and I were able to see Brent looking good at six…

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and Lesley six miles in.

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We then met up with Ellen to pump her up before her half marathon. They took off at 7:30 AM. Spoiler Alert: Ellen ran a 1:41:54!!!
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Marta and I then rushed to the 16/20 mile mark up near Cal State Long Beach. We JUST missed Brent, but saw Lesley at 16 and waited for Brent to look around Cal State Long Beach to meet us at mile 20. Fun Fact: Brent and I had our first kiss at Cal State Long Beach during Teach For America Institute. He said running around campus was a trip down memory lane!

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Marta and I were a little tired from our 5 mile hustle to the 16/20 spot and were starting to get hungry waiting around for Brent. Marta saved the day by whipping out these gatorade energy chews. We got stressed about not having energy for Brent’s final six.

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The final six was challenging for Brent, but he was so positive and his form looked amazing. He experienced the usual 20+ mile exhaustion/I hate running/why did I sign up for this, but no injuries, no vomiting, no dehydration. He barked at me when I took this photo, but I knew he would forgive me later.

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At mile 25 Marta and I went off the course, and took the sidewalk back. We sprinted a mile to the finish line and were able to capture Brent’s marathon finish. Brent finished in 4:03, nearly a 30 minute PR and his first marathon in five years. I remember Brent saying he would NEVER run more than eight miles again in his life, and here he is finishing a marathon strong!
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Gisele, my super fast AREC Member of the Year run buddy works for Run Racing, who put on this AMAZING event. She got Brent, Marta, Ellen and I into the VIP tent. It took Brent about an hour to have any interest in eating or drinking anything. We had fruit salad, omelets, LOTS OF BACON and mimosas with an incredible view of the finish line. THANK YOU GISELE!

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Marta peeking in before she got into the VIP tent.

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Thinking of running the Long Beach Marathon?

Pros:

  • Flat course
  • GREAT t-shirt!
  • Fun post race celebration with plenty freebies, massages, a huge run club village and lots of positive energy!
  • Well-organized expo and easy packet pick-up
  • Big city race feel with lots of community support
  • Plenty of water on the course
  • Lots of spectators, fun bands, cheerleaders and other course support

Cons:

  • I really can’t think of many. Maybe that parking was congested at the end? To be expected.

My Runs Last Week:

  • Monday: Six Mile Run after-school. 7:34 pace.
  • Tuesday: No running. Strength routine.
  • Wednesday: Back on My Feet in the Morning and 4 Mile pace run with Ellen after-school. 7:27 pace.
  • Thursday: Off.
  • Friday: Back on My Feet 4 Mile Run. 7:47 pace.
  • Saturday: Watchless 8ish Mile Run in Santa Monica with Kathy and Lauren
  • Sunday: 11ish run around Long Beach. Yoga video.
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