This one apparently took off out of the gates at breakneck speed and never looked back. Emmy and Elsa came in first and second out of our crew, and though my firstborn swears he came in second "out of the people we know", I just don't have the heart to tell him otherwise.
With regards to the race, there is a distinct discrepancy in enthusiasm between my first and second born, as is evidenced by the following photos:
With the kids' run and 5k wrapped up-congratulations to AK for her 5k PR!-it was then time to cheer for the half-marathoners and marathoners, so Heather and I were first stationed at mile 5. Bennett made his dad an awesome "camouflage" sign, and I do think Len's PR of 1:59 can be attributed at least in part to said sign.
Is Thomas even running here? I'm not sure. Cameron, on the other hand, after waking up at 6 and bounding into our room full of excitement and energy, is determined, rounding the corner with speed and tenacity.
Thomas did eventually pick it up, however, and ran the last lap with Jay, Evan, and Bennett (who, incidentally, was on his second lap), and then crossed the finish line at a decent clip.
We then headed to the top of McDaniel, mile 10, to give runners a boost after climbing that nasty hill. Patrick finally participated at the urging of either Aunt Lynne or Evan, two of his very favorite people.
We got to see a lot of people pass here-Scott B, who finished 16th overall in the half, Ben A, who's training for an upcoming November marathon in Georgia and who is continually amazed by the ubiquitous Barnhardt fandom, Keith C, who ran a sub-four hour marathon, and Joe, to name a few, who ran his first half with a time of 1:43 and who's pictured below moving so fast Heather couldn't even get him in the frame.
Maddy and Tina looked strong here as well, as is evidenced by Maddy's fancy footin' and shadowboxing.
Meanwhile, back at the stadium, Jon was breezing around the field for yet another victory. I swear when I saw him pass at mile five it was almost like a mirage. He was so quiet, efficient, and (I'm overstating the obvious here), FAST, I almost missed him. Congratulations, Jon!
Photo by Ashley Southern
After seeing Maddy and Tina at mile 10 we headed out to the course to catch them at mile 18 and 19, pictured below, where they both still looked really strong.
Joy picked up Tina at mile 19 and ran her in, and then came back and did the same for Maddy. She is such a supportive, intuitive, generous friend, and I know she made those last miles tolerable and maybe even enjoyable! Madeleine unfortunately had severe knee pain during the last 16 miles, but she gritted it out and finished strong, thus proving that girls DO in fact run marathons.
This finishing photo of Tina makes me cry every time I see it. It speaks to accomplishment, triumph, training, joy, hard work, and believing in yourself, and I love it. I swear I can hear Queen playing every time I see it. I remember last summer talking to Tina at the pool, suggesting she run a half-marathon. She didn't say "NO WAY" out right, but she hedged a little, probably thinking Joy and I were a titch nuts. And now look at her!
All told, it was a great day from start to finish, and I'm already looking forward to next year...
Thanks to Heather P for the majority of these lovely photos, and to Tommy as well!