Yesterday was the NYC Marathon. So. Much. Fun!!! As I mentioned before, I was interested in volunteering for a race. Settling on the NYC marathon happened when I found out some famous people, Apolo Ohno, Jennie Finch, and other reality tv stars, would be running. (I only ended up seeing Apolo Ohno as he went flying by me, and a couple of reality stars, but thats ok). I received an email saying to arrive around 8:30 and to stay until around 4. I was excited for the whole thing and to see what people look like when they hit mile 25.
Paul and I woke up around 6 am to get ready to go. By 6:30 we were at Dunkin Donuts and then were off to the train station. Finally we got into the city (trains, subway, walking etc.) and made our way over to mile 25. We showed up earlier than scheduled but jumped right in to help out. Moving gatorades, mixing gatorade, and setting up cups. Paul and I took one table near the front to set everything up.
Tada! Finished product. There is something like 450 cups staked, and filled with gatorade. We then had to move all that gatorade cups around so that the G logo is in front. I started out the morning pouring, refilling, and stacking the cups.
The wheelchair racers started coming around 10 am, quickly followed by the first females and the first males. Paul was pretty excited because the first male (pictured below) took his cup of gatorade. He didn’t take anyone else’s after this at our stop, so basically his last bit of fuel before the finish came from Paul.
To say Paul was excited is an understatement. He also got loads of applause from all the other volunteers. Not that he needed the ego boost or anything… Haha
Around noon, when most of the runners started coming, one of the girls in front of the table told me she was too tired and hungry and needed me to take her space. I filled in for her and started handing out the cups. From that point on there was really no stopping in the flow of runners. Slowly all the other volunteers started leaving. By 4pm Paul and I were the only volunteers left at our table. This was technically the time to leave but I found it really hard to. Watching all these people that have been working their ass’s off all morning to get to this point, I couldn’t just leave. Plus, this would be around the time I would probably come in if I ran the marathon. These were my people, no way I could leave!
Finally around 5, when Paul and I were both about to fall over from being so sore, and just about all the volunteers had left, we decided to leave. The number of runners coming in had significantly dwindled, and while I still felt bad, I knew I couldn’t stay all night.
I had an amazing time out there seeing some of the runners and learned so much! First of all, way more work goes into every race than I ever imagined. Also saying things to volunteers like “thank you!” or “thanks for coming out, we really appreciate you volunteering” can absolutely make someones day. I like to think I thank everyone when they hand me water, but I will be sure to now for all of my races. I would say the day was a huge success, even though I was exhausted at the end of it! Huge congrats to all the racers, you guys were amazing and even though about 99% of you are strangers ( I did actually see 2 people I knew!) I am very proud of you all for what you accomplished!