Anyway he ran the Green river marathon which starts in Kent and ends on Seattle's beaches. It wasn't a really big production. No numbers, no people lining the course, no tape at the finish... but then again it was free. I laugh thinking back to the night before as we looked at the directions online and tried to even get the course figured out. They actually had to post people at certain points to keep the runners from getting lost (they didn't cover every spot though as Eric ran a good extra way).
We saw Dave and Eric off at the start and piled in the car to go to the 2 1/2 mile mark to see him crossing the river (the first of many crossings). We barely made it. They were running so fast. Then we were in the car again and off to find a place to buy poster boards and markers in an unknown land to make signs. We parked our cold little selves at one of those ambiguous direction places and pointed a good 75 people in the right direction. Then we saw Dave and Eric coming around the corner. We had lots of fun waving our signs and hooting and hollering. Next it was off to the rescue to find Advil and meet back up with our aching runners. That was at about mile 13. That's when Dave and Eric split up. He was on his own after that. We met again with him at mile 21 and from there Chase ran the last five miles with him to keep him company and keep his mind off of his aching body. We had a lot of fun being the Gatorade and Gu suppliers.
The kids are the best groupies ever. They never ever complained even though it was cold and we got rained on several times. Dave always looked like he was doing well the whole way. Not like me. I would have looked like the living dead after a short few miles I'm sure.
We celebrated with a yummy lunch at Red Robin and some ice cream later that night from Cold Stone. Now Dave can call himself a marathoner and I can say with no reservations that I will never follow in his footsteps :-)
That's what she said... now here's what Dave has to say. It's true, I mocked the marathoners as nuts that seemed to like pain. Then I met a guy in Egypt who does it because he loves to run. He runs beyond 26.2, even up to 100 miles. We had lots of conversations about the sport and I found myself wanting to run a marathon myself. To be honest, I had an idealized vision in my head of running long enough to find inner peace like Greg and become one with nature around me. Turns out I instead held a debate in my head for about 15 miles on the merits of finishing vs. the shame of calling Jen for a ride. I battled a cramping calf muscle for about half the run and my knees felt like they had gravel in them by the end but I finished. No need to tell the time because it wasn't fast, but if you want to look up the results I'll save you time. I'm pretty far down the list. http://www.greenrivermarathon.com/results/2008_results.html
I did learn a few things in running a marathon: it's great to run with a buddy (thanks Eric), 26.2 miles is an incredibly long way to run, and the fear of shame is a very powerful motivator.