The second race of my birthday double was Leading Ladies Marathon in Spearfish, SD. After 26.2 in Wyoming, I made the 7 hour drive, making it a point to eat, drink, and stretch as much as possible along the way. I didn’t end up getting to my hotel until 8:30pm, which really isn’t ideal marathon preparation…but then again neither is running a marathon the day before.
|Break out the arm warmers (in August!)|
I have always enjoyed the running camaraderie shared with other women, making this race- an all female marathon- especially unique. If that didn’t have “Suzy” written all over it, the fact that everything race related was either pink or floral did. If you know me, you understand that I’m as girly as they come. Case in point: the glittery tiara I wore on my head for this race to commemorate my 30th birthday and marathon state.
We caught a 4 am bus to the 6 am start of the point to point course, an expereince very reminiscent of Boston Marathon. During the half hour ride, there was a ton of chatter, positive energy, and excitement. I really enjoyed meeting the women around me, including my seatmate who is aiming for her 10th Marathon Maniac star by running 52 marathons in 2011. Without a doubt, you always find someone at these events who has more aggressive goals than you do.
Dances with Wolves was filmed in this area; it’s pretty safe to assume there were no fancy computer effects- this course offered a tranquil setting and absolutely breathtaking view for the entire run: massive cliffs, rugged rock formations, moss draped spruce trees, wild flowers in full bloom, and grassy marsh areas. Canyon walls we passed through are said to be older than the Grand Canyon itself. Gorgeous!
Want to capture an overwhelming amount of spectator support? Wear a tiara on your head. I have done everything from ‘SUZY’ in big bold letters on my shirt to running in costume, but nothing compares with the buzz that silly crown created. “Birthday girl!”, “30! 30! 30!”, and even a full chorus of Happy Birthday (using “runner” where the name would normally go) made me feel very special.
|The tiara stayed on the entire time|
|AG award was a spruce candle holder that Pavel tried to eat|