Spectating the SLO Marathon

I can’t remember what month it was exactly, but it seems like it was just yesterday.  Sometime during the end of 2011 on one of our standard morning runs, my friend Sima said out loud to Kristin and myself that she thought she was ready to run a marathon.  She was hesitant to say it out loud to us because she knew we would hold her to it, and you know we did! 

Way back when in 2010, Kristin and I convinced Sima to sign up for The Relay with our team which was was her first real race experience.  After surviving 30 hours in a van, with some tough runs on no sleep, she signed up for her first half marathon.  A few half marathons later she decided she was ready for a full.  It’s an understatement to say I was excited for her.

Kristin also wanted to run a spring marathon and was ready to take a chunk of time off her PR.  After they looked around and considered some options, they picked the inaugural SLO Marathon in San Luis Obispo.  I was SO excited that they picked this race since I consider the area home (grew up 30 minutes south) and went to college in SLO.  They both registered, made training plans and the rest was history!

I was personally really excited to have another weekend of distractions to help me through AR50 recovery.  Plus being their support crew, I could try and return the favor of them being a huge part of AR50 for me.  I couldn’t imagine being anywhere else while Kristin ran her 4th marathon and Sima became a marathoner.

We got into SLO Friday, spent Saturday eating, going to the expo, walking around, eating more and just enjoying the sunshine.  I was really impressed by the expo and a tad jealous that I wasn’t running too.  It was really warm on Saturday and I was a little nervous for my friends, but they hydrated as much as they could and had great attitudes.  They set all their race stuff out and we were all in bed early for an early morning the next day.

Me, Kristin, Sima and Megan 

The race started at 6am so we all got up really early at 4am.  I dropped off the girls as close as I could to the start and my spectating partner in crime, Megan, and I made our way to our first cheering spot at mile 5.5… after a coffee run of course.  As the sun came up it was very apparent that the fog had rolled in overnight and granted all these runners with perfect running weather.



We hung out at our spot and pretty soon the leaders came through.  Our eyes were peeled for our runners and before long we spotted Kristin looking happy and strong!


Not too far behind her was Sima, marathoner in the making!


After we saw them we hurried over to our next spot at mile 18.  We parked the car and tried to make it over to mile 8 (this part was a loop) but sadly we didn’t have enough time.  This part of the course was running through some of my favorite wineries… too bad they weren’t open yet! 


We got extra water bottles and fuel ready for the girls and waited patiently for the runners to start passing us.  Like clockwork, Kristin ran by and Sima wasn’t far behind. 


One great part of knowing the city where you are spectating is I knew how to get to our next points really easily.  I was able to avoid traffic and take the back roads, and we made it to the finish line with time to spare.  The finish line was at the Madonna Inn and the parking was really easy and organized.  We found a spot next to the fence, .1 from the finish line and kept our eyes peeled for the girls.

Queen consistent, Kristin, showed up at the exact minute I thought she would and looked amazing as she headed into the finish line, demolishing her old marathon PR!  I was so incredibly proud of her.


She came and found us at our spot on the fence, giving us some insights to the hilly course she just killed.  We all were anxiously awaiting Sima and we spotted her and screamed our heads off.  Marathoner!! 


I can’t tell you how proud I am of both of these girls and how happy I am that I got to be there to see it happen.  We have trained so many miles together over the last few months and it’s been so fun to watch their progress.  Sima went from being scared of hills and intimidated by long runs to a strong, happy marathon runner on a hilly course!  Kristin turned an incredibly busy spring life into a perfectly executed, textbook negative split marathon PR. 

They were both beaming. 


This race is definitely on my to do list!  I was impressed with how organized everything was, especially for a first time race.  Plus being my hometown race, I have to run it one of these years.  It looked so fun!   

There is something about watching your friends accomplish and surpass their goals that is so motivating.  Watching 2 of my best friends on Sunday definitely did that for me.  I can’t wait to see what they want to do next and I can’t wait for more runs with my favorite morning run crew.  I am very lucky to have them. 

Congrats runners!

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18 Responses to Spectating the SLO Marathon

  1. Alyssa April 23, 2012 at 9:54 pm #

    LOVE! <3 love love love.

    That race looks so great — the fog, the rolling hills, this scenery, the smiles on Kristin & Sima's faces! What a perfect day!

  2. Paulette April 23, 2012 at 10:24 pm #

    Looks like a really cool race, and pretty close to the bay area. Might have to put this one on my to do list too!

  3. RunInBoise April 23, 2012 at 10:58 pm #

    This race is close to the area where my BF grew up and I would like to spend more time down there. It is on my to-do race list for sure!

  4. The Blonde April 24, 2012 at 5:56 am #

    I love spectating! Gets me very excited for my own running; almost a renewed sense of love for running!

  5. Cate April 24, 2012 at 6:04 am #

    I HAVE to do this race next year! Looks like so much fun!

  6. Corey April 24, 2012 at 6:35 am #

    I love reading about your awesome little group of friends and how much you all support each other at your races and in your training. You are all very lucky to have each other as running buddies!!

  7. SkinnyRunner April 24, 2012 at 7:24 am #

    it was an awesome race, very well put together. thanks again for the pics you sent me!

  8. The Runners Bug April 24, 2012 at 7:49 am #

    It’s always great to support others. I need to do this more often and help out the fellow runners.

  9. Kristin April 24, 2012 at 8:57 am #

    LOVE LOVE LOVE everything about this! Thank you for always being there for me and for being the best running buddy, support crew and friend EVER. I can’t even get over how far I’ve come in just two months. You’ve helped me in every single way (like packing things in boxes, haha). Love you so much friend!

  10. Sima April 24, 2012 at 9:59 am #

    I couldn’t have said it better myself! I love this post! Thanks for being such a big part of my success on Sunday. Your confidence in my abilities, your advice and most of all, your friendship, has been such a positive influence on my life. I am so glad I got to experience my first marathon with you and am looking forward to all the fun things we have planned ahead (running and non-running related)!!!!

  11. Audrey April 24, 2012 at 11:15 am #

    Look at those rolling hills! Congrats to both Kristin and Sima – nothing like a PR and a first marathon – what a successful outing!

  12. Carrie April 24, 2012 at 11:54 am #

    What a cool sounding race! It’s not that far from me, perhaps I should check it out next year.

  13. greengirlrunning April 24, 2012 at 12:12 pm #

    That race looks great… love the fog, too :)

  14. Abby @ Change of Pace April 24, 2012 at 12:32 pm #

    That race does look awesome! Congrats to Sima and Kristin. And way to go with your cheering!

  15. Christine April 24, 2012 at 6:24 pm #

    That makes me want to sign up for my next marathon! Congrats to both ladies!!

  16. Marlene April 24, 2012 at 7:11 pm #

    It is SO awesome watching friends succeed and being a part of their big day. Congrats to Kristin & Sima and kudos to their awesome cheer-leader. :)

  17. Jamie April 24, 2012 at 8:45 pm #

    How fun! Looks like beautiful weather! Jealous!


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