Race report (of sorts): 2012 First Half Half Marathon

Dylan Wykes, passing mile 2 of the 2012 First Half Half Marathon.

Dylan Wykes, passing mile 2 of the 2012 First Half Half Marathon. He would finish in a course record time of 1:04:21.

It’s been said that one of the best ways for a runner to give back is to volunteer at a local race. This weekend, I did just that, at the First Half Half Marathon. Running the race last year, I was impressed with the way it’s organized. This year, with my single focus on training for the Vancouver Marathon, I decided to give the race a pass, but I signed up to be a volunteer.

I was assigned to two shifts. The first shift, on the day before the race, involved bib pickup. I got to meet a sizable number of runners, some of whom I actually knew. And when I was posted to a spot on the course on race day, I managed to recognize a few other people I knew running through, and I waved at them and encouraged them to finish strong (I was at the point where there was one kilometre left until the finish). And when I wasn’t holding back cars coming out of a private driveway, I was cheering for the racers, most of it with a cowbell. Maybe you heard it as you were passing under the Burrard Bridge?

It was fun, but I underestimated how cold it was when you’re standing outside for a few hours. Nevertheless, it was a great experience, and I encourage you to volunteer at a race near you. It’s definitely one of the great ways to be a part of the race experience without actually doing any running!

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