(#29) Petaluma Clo-Cow Half Marathon – Part 2 (Lovely Spectators)

September 17, 2012

Yesterday, I left off saying that the course was hard.They warned us on the website, saying, “If you’re tired of those boring ‘flat and fast’ half’s, this one is for you!”

They were right! This was a tough race with tons of hills, and barely anything that was flat. I was constantly going up and down. It made it an interesting journey, for sure.

Every volunteer I passed was so sweet and fun. Each person seemed completely stoked to be there. I always felt super supported, even though I was the very last one.

Special shout out to the “Girls on the Run” water stop!

“Girls on the Run” is (from their website): “dedicated to creating a world where every girl knows and activates her limitless potential and is free to boldly pursue her dreams… Running is used to inspire and motivate girls, encourage lifelong health and fitness, and build confidence through accomplishment.”

That’s an organization I can definitely get behind. Both times I passed their water stop, all the girls (the elementary-schoolers, and the grown up women alike) were nothing but joyous. They had endless energy!

Even though I was dead last, once I was in the ladies’ sight, all the little girls leaped into action. One girl rang a cowbell with more enthusiasm than anyone in the history of cowbells has rang one. Girls grabbed gels and water, offering me anything I needed. And the big kids (or grown-ups, you could say) facilitated all that awesomeness by being awesome themselves.

Huge props to the organization itself, the women who ran the water stop, the race for including “Girls on the Run,” and the girls who worked tirelessly for hours to support every runner out there. A+. I was moved by all the joy there. I sincerely hope that those girls can find that joy throughout the rest of their lives, and that “Girls on the Run” inspires more girls with every year!

Even though I’m sending that group a special shout-out, every volunteer at the race was awesome. There wasn’t a single volunteer who seemed annoyed to still be out there as I passed by them (again, in dead last place).

When I finally made it around to the finish, every police officer and spectator I passed cheered me on. “You’re almost there!” “You can do it!” This was a sweet, sweet town where no one seemed to care that I was incredibly slow.

I finally turned the corner and ran into the finish as the clock said 3:59:18. (The time limit was 4 hours, and I made it, by golly!)

The moment I crossed the finished, I was greeted by a whole team of lovely people from Clover Stornetta Farms – a company sponsoring the race.

They handed me some delicious chocolate milk, some water, a towel, and best of all, the absolute best medal I’ve gotten yet! It’s a cowbell that makes noise and everything. And it is loud!

You could easily tell who’d run the race, ’cause you’d hear them coming a mile away. I loved it.

I stopped off for some delicious lunch at this local place called McNear’s. I had pancakes with strawberry butter, which I didn’t know was a thing, but now it’s a thing I like a lot.

I jumped on a bus and slept pretty much the entire way from San Francisco to Los Angeles.

Great race. Great community. Great fun. Great day!

2 thoughts on “(#29) Petaluma Clo-Cow Half Marathon – Part 2 (Lovely Spectators)”

  1. if you don’t mind me asking buddy, why don’t you just get a used beater car instead of taking the bus to all these awesome races. in the long run you would probably save some money. just a thought.

    1. Hi Chris. Thanks for your comment. I don’t mind you asking, but I can guarantee you it is much cheaper to take the bus to all these races than it would be to get a car.

      Even if we pretended for a second that the cost to buy the car itself was literally nothing (which would probably not be true), there would be insurance, parking (it’s $100/month just for a space in my building – not to mention other parking garages, meters, and such in Los Angeles), and gas. There would also probably be repairs here and there, oil changes, and things like that.

      The Greyhound bus is only about $45 to go as far as San Francisco (or Phoenix, for that matter).

      Plus, think of how valuable all the time is that I spend not driving. I can use my time on the bus to sleep, blog, or write emails – whatever I need to do with those hours. Also, sometimes I meet fun/interesting people on the bus.

      Not to mention, if I were to get a car, I’d have yet another large possession that I’d have to figure out how to get rid of if I were to move to NY (where I would never want a car). (Yes, I’m sure I could sell it, but it still would be extra work I’d have to do.)

      Also, I find driving to be somewhat stressful. I’m not a great driver. It’s something I do not do a lot, and driving in L.A. is the worst kind of driving because of all the traffic and the aggressive drivers out here. I can handle driving. I have driven before (and do take rental cars every once in a while), but it’s not something I love to do.

      Finally, cost aside, it’s much better for the environment when I take public transportation. I still have work to do to be greener. I don’t always make the absolute best choices when it comes to the environment, but every good choice I do make helps.

      (Again, I am not completely against cars. I’ve driven a rental before, and I’m sure I will again. They’re just not my favorite, and I would not want a car permanently (or even semi-permanently) in my life.)

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