I’m still recovering from my latest knee injury, but love to volunteer at races. I think it is important to do so – because you need to give back to those who provide all the great running opportunities for you.
My daughter and son-in-law (Jennifer and Jeremy Merkley) joined me on Antelope Island yesterday morning to run Aid Station 4 at the first ever Mountain View Trail Half Marathon. The morning started off spectacularly. I have probably only seen two antelope in all my times running on Antelope Island, but we saw a herd of almost 100 pronghorn antelope on the Mountain View road yesterday morning. Fantastic! They are so awesome looking.
We sent up the aid station and had lots of time left, so Jeremy and I walked about 2 miles on the trail, visiting and enjoying the sights.
About 70 minutes after the race started, the first two runners blew through the aid station. If you have ever helped at a race you know that there are a variety of runners. The competitive ones will not stop and do everything on the run. They hardly talk and are very focused. Later runners are much more relaxed and the last runners just take their time, visit, stop for multiple drinks and are just out there to finish. A great group of runners came through and we enjoyed cheering them on.
Once the sweeper runner came through, we dismantled the aid station and Jenn and Jeremy took the van to the finish line and I ran the last 2.5 miles to the end.
My sister has been letting me use her van while my kids borrow my jeep and it was a lifesaver at least twice yesterday. We needed a big vehicle to get all the gear to the drop point at the end of the race. Then, as we were pulling out of the parking lot, a group of runners stuck out their thumbs to hitchhike (they needed to get 13.1 miles back to the starting line), and we piled a total of 11 people in a seven person van.
It was a beautiful day for a race. Sunny, not too warm, and a little breeze. I just wish I was able to run that far right now!