Friday, February 13, 2015

Austin Marathon Pre-race

I'll be running the Austin Marathon for the third time on Sunday. Before my first marathon in 2010 I did a post on things I was looking forward to seeing on the course. There were 12 things on the list, I don't know why 12, but Jeff said I should have had 26 things, 1 for each mile. So this time I've got 26 things I'm looking forward to seeing during the race, roughly corresponding to each mile.
1. Crossing Town Lake on the Congress bridge and seeing ALL those people running up Congress-so cool!! I loved this during my first few Austin Marathon & Half Marathon races and now the start line is back to the perfect spot to see the full effect of ALL those people running :)
from the 2009 race, if you look up Congress you can see the sea of runners
 2. Passing Home Slice and Guero's, Guero's usually has breakfast tacos going and they smell great!
Guero's at night, obviously it will look a little different on marathon morning!
3. Turning onto S. 1st St and getting a few miles of DOWNHILL!!

4. Spectators on S. 1st St. It's no secret that I LOVE seeing spectators out on the course and I get a lot of energy from them. S. 1st seems to always be full of spectators...many of them in full "Keep Austin Weird" fashion :)

5. Passing Gourdough's on S. 1st, it was our indulgence after the marathon in 2010, haven't been there in a loooong time.

6.  Crossing Town Lake on the First Street bridge. I just love to look at Town Lake.
Taken during the 2009 Cap Tex Tri

7. Austin City Hall! I love our city hall, it's a really cool building, it's actually shaped like an armadillo and has awesome Texas gardens and seating around it. It's also a perfect spectating spot, so I'm hoping to get a lift from the cheering section there :)

8. I loved seeing the HUGE crowd of spectators on "Livestrong Way" (Cesar Chavez) in 2013, there were hundreds (if not over a thousand) people out wearing yellow, with yellow signs, yellow chalk on the ground and all cheering their hearts out- it was amazing! One of the highlights of my 2013 marathon! I really hope they're back this year!
"Livestrong Way" 2013
9. Lake Austin Blvd is part of an iconic Austin running route called "scenic loop". I always enjoy racing on Lake Austin because I can look around and try to catch a glimpse of Lake Austin since I don't have to worry about car traffic on race day.

10. The adorable houses on Enfield and Exposition (many of them are huge mansions now, but it's still a pretty area). I love this area, before my first Austin Half, Jeff and I drove the course and I thought this was one of the cutest neighborhoods I'd ever seen.  

11. Getting up the steepest hill in the race! In 2013, I had a spectating crew cheering me up that hill, so I'm hoping for some great spectator support there this year too!
Jim, Jeff, Ingrid  & Shayla (Katherine & Kristen not pictured) cheering me up Expo in 2013
 12. Finishing the Exposition hills! I've never loved running Expo and I haven't run a lot of hills this year, so I'll be happy to get through that section! 

13.  Bull Creek means over halfway and finished with the steepest hills-Yay!! I've been offered a beer on Bull Creek both times I've run the marathon- that's a little early in the run to start drinking :)

14. Shoal Creek Nursery on Hancock. I love plants and it's really pretty there.
Shoal Creek Nursery
15.  Turning onto White Rock, I run and bike the next 5-6 miles of the course all the time, it's close to home, so it always feels good to get to this point.

16.  Seeing Devon at Greenlawn & Great Northern, I love seeing all the spectators out there, and it's fun to see people when I don't expect it, but it's also fun to look forward to seeing someone in a specific place :)

17. Seeing Annette at Foster & Rockwood, it wouldn't be the Austin Marathon without Annette at Foster & Rockwood!

18. I really hope I get to see Domino the GIANT Violet Crown pig somewhere in Crestview.


19. Jenny Corner. Jenny is off in New Mexico skiing this winter so she won't be at her corner to give hugs this year, but of course I will think about her when I turn onto Arroyo Seco.

20.  The Peter Pan house. It has a really pretty yard, lots of butterfly and hummingbird plants, a very cute and sweet golden retriever who is always on the porch and it says "Second to the right and straight on till morning" on the porch.
The Peter Pan House

21. The Teddy Bear Guillotine!! It hasn't been up for almost 3 years, but I'm hoping this house will do something fun for the marathon. North Loop just has a funky, fun, Austin vibe and some of the houses really show that. There is still an impaled witch from Halloween on the top of the pole to the right in the pictures
The Teddy Bear Guillotine, 2012
 22. The cute houses on Duval, 41st & Red River.  After living in Austin, I think I actually like this neighborhood (Hyde Park) better than the Enfield (Tarrytown) neighborhood. 

 24. The house parties on Duval are always entertaining. And I hope to see Amy & Betsy again this year, maybe I'll really take one of their jello shots this time :)
pretending to take a jello shot during the 2013 marathon

25.  Running down San Jac on campus and seeing the Capitol! Less than 2 miles to go!

26.  I hope someone as much fun as Tracy is around to encourage me when I run/walk/crawl up the insult hill on San Jac!

26.2.   The Finish Line!!!!!!
My first Austin Half Marathon in 2008
Good luck to everyone else running this weekend and an early THANK YOU to everyone planning to be on the course volunteering or spectating!

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