If you've ever participated in a large endurance event, whether it be a half marathon, marathon, or Ironman, you know that there are a lot of spectators. And when you're a participant, you're not always concerned with looking for your loved ones that are out there cheering you on, since you're typically focused on getting through the race. Usually, though, it does provide a pick me up when you do happen to see your support crew.
There are a few different things you can do to make finding your supporters a little bit easier, and really make your support crew's day a lot better too. First, you can agree on a location that they are going to be at prior to the race starting. Then, once you get to that area, you know to keep your eyes open for them. What we've done for the last few races, and actually works really well, is The Wife gets a balloon the day before the race. This way, when I'm out on the course, even if I'm not exactly paying attention, a balloon almost always catches my eye! It makes it very easy to spot my family and get that little burst of energy!
Sometimes us athletes need a little reminder that the race isn't only about us, it's about the spectators as well! I actually think that the athletes have the easier job of the day. Our job is cut and dry. The spectators have the harder job of standing around and playing "Where's Waldo?" all day long. There's no way I could do that! So during your next race, make sure you at least give your supporters a big smile and wave and really thank them for giving up their day to support you!