There have been three races that I registered for, but didn’t run…
There was the 2000 Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run when Bill and I woke up to a light snow and let the sweet call of our warm bed pull us back in.
Then there was the the 2012 Rock ‘N’ Roll USA Marathon that I couldn’t run because of a painful back injury.
But the reason behind not running the 2003 Frederick Marathon was downright ridiculous. We were well trained and probably would have done well, had we made it to the starting line. That was the year that I had run Debbie’s Easter Bonnet Marathon as my last long run before the taper; perhaps it was fate that made me randomly run an unplanned marathon that day.
The reason we didn’t run the 2003 Frederick Marathon? We almost ran out of gas… And we both left our wallets at home…
About half way to Frederick, Bill pulled into a gas station to fill up the tank on the 4-Runner and realized he’d left his wallet at home. No worries, I’d just get my wallet out and take over driving… Uh-oh, no wallet…
So we had two choices: drive on to Frederick and risk running out of gasoline on the way home, or turn around and drive home right then and there! Apparently, we’re not risk takers. We drove home.
The marathon organizers were kind enough to mail our shirts to us, but we were too ashamed to ever wear them!
We registered for the 2006 Frederick Marathon as our redemption race. We topped off the gas tank the day before and shoved our wallets in our running shoes so we wouldn’t forget them. We arrived at the race plenty early to check in and pick up our race packets, but they couldn’t find us as registered. After a bit, they figured out the problem and hand wrote out bibs for us.
When I saw the shirts, I was so excited that they were technical and available in a ladies cut! Unfortunately because of the registration mix-up, I had to take whatever size was left and had to settle for a large.
We saw our friend Jimmy and his brother there and hung out with them for a while before the race started. I don’t have a lot of specific memories of the race itself, except that Bill and I hung together for quite a while. It was a humid day and around mile twenty the sun got really hot. Bill started struggling a little bit with the heat and I pulled ahead.
This was the only marathon I’ve ever run in that had porta potties every mile! Even if you don’t need to use one, it’s very comforting to know that they are near by.
From about the 20-mile marker on, I ran alone and since the race field was spread out, I was pretty lonely. I saw Bill not too far behind me at a turn-around point, and I was relieved that the weather wasn’t bothering him as much as I thought.
As we approached Harry Grove Stadium, home of the Frederick Keys, the course turned onto the outfield and we ran toward first base finishing at home plate. I finished in 3:50:14 (8:47 pace) with Bill exactly two and a half minutes behind me.
As soon as we crossed the finish line, we were given our medal and a finisher’s shirt. I love little surprises like that after a race!
We walked around the field, stretched, grabbed some post-race goodies, and reminisced about taking the boys when they were younger to see the Keys play.
We hopped in our car and drove home, and it wasn’t until the race results were posted online the next day that I realized that I won my age group and the women’s masters!
I called the running store where the unclaimed trophies were taken after the race, and they agreed to let my friend, who lived in Frederick, pick mine up for me.
For a relatively small marathon with a hometown feel, it was a well run race. I would definitely consider running it again if I were still running that distance.
- What is your best DNS (did not start) race story?
- Have you ever run a race that started or stopped at a sports stadium?
- How’s your weekend going so far?
Happy Running! ~ Deb