Happy post-PRR day! Hope everyone had a great Fourth of July and a great run. After all the build up to the main event, it’s kind of hard to believe it’s over. As a Peachtree Road Race newbie, I’m happy to say I had such a good experience that I’m already looking forward to next year’s race. I was impressed at how well-organized everything was and had an awesome time people watching — and of course celebrating post-race with a giant brunch. Here are some of my highlights — and just a couple of lowlights — from yesterday:
The flag: Seeing the giant American flag hanging from the crane at the starting line was an inspiring way to start the race.
The costumes: There were the expected red, white and blue get-ups, which were nice, but I loved the unexpected — the group of guys dressed as bald eagles, the girls in nude body suits and neon wigs who made me do a double take, the runners in head-to-toe colored spandex suits. It was a fun way to distract myself when I was trying not to focus on how hot and sweaty I was.
The vets: At mile four, I passed an older man wearing a sign on his back that said, “This is my 32nd Peachtree.” Riding MARTA after the race, I talked to a man who had just completed his 25th PRR. It made me want to want to rack up my own completed Peachtree number.
The bands: I love a race with some diverse live, local music along the course. I made note of a classic rock band, a rapper and an indie rock band that kept me entertained.
The spectators: The enthusiasm of the people watching was infectious. It’s amazing what hearing a stranger scream, “You can do it!” can do for your motivation.
The finish line: I think this goes without saying.
The post-race eats: I don’t think a peach ever tasted as delicious to me as the one I got from the Publix tent at the finish line. The cookies were nice, too.
The freebies: Don’t get me wrong — I love me some swag. But the T-shirts and Frisbees being thrown onto the course in front of Moe’s created some gridlock — I couldn’t believe how many people stopped right in the middle of the course just to get a free T-shirt with a burrito on it. You get a T-shirt at the end of the race that you already paid for, people! Keep running!
The running etiquette: Or, rather, the lack thereof. I’m going to give people who stopped to walk the benefit of the doubt and assume that they didn’t know that, just like the highway, slower traffic should stay to the right.
The heat: I knew it was coming, but that didn’t make it any easier.
What were some of your good, bad and ugly moments from yesterday? For other newbies: Did the race meet your expectations? What would you like to see for next year?