Almost a former blogger

Still rambling about running. Sometimes other things.

Socializing at Blue Ridge

Despite not having the best feeling race on Saturday, the Blue Ridge Half Marathon was fun for so many reasons beyond the race. This event turned out to be one of the most social races I've been a part of, finally meeting quite a few people from Twitter and dailymile. It was also special because the company who pays me in my day job had a huge part of the marathon, so I got to hang out at the expo for several hours. I also go to be behind-the-scenes of shooting a course video, which you can view here on YouTube.

As part of being at the expo I got to once again meet running legend Bill Rodgers, who I first met in October at the Baltimore Marathon expo.

Bill Rodgers, Roanoke, Va.

Blue Ridge, Roanoke, Bill Rodgers

Check out an interview a couple of my co-workers did with Bill following the race.

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While at the expo I met Tim, aka The Beer Runner.

The Beer Runner

Tim has a great interview with Bill here and an excellent recap of his Blue Ridge Half experience here. Tim was 3rd overall in the half marathon. We didn't get to drink together, but I'm hoping he'll return next year.

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Also at the expo I met Kevin of Just Finish (pictured below) and Mike (aka DirtDawg50k), both of whom were running the Blue Ridge "Double." Yes, that means running America's Toughest Road Marathon twice. Back to back.

Just Finish at the Blue Ridge Expo

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During the race I met Krissy, who blogs at Shiawase Life. Krissy was actually running this race thanks to me as she won my race entry giveaway last fall. She recognized my green shoes and my #runchat sticker I had on my back. About a quarter mile into the race she tapped me on my shoulder to introduce herself. We ended up running most of the first mile together. Her recap is here.

Below is Krissy, me and Jay (@iJasonYu on Twitter). Jay and I have known each other for several years and met a few times while I lived in Richmond.

Blue Ridge Half Marathon group

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Jay makes another appearance below with Shane (@ctnhd on Twitter), who I met and had a couple of beers with the night before. The three of us ended up literally opening a bar after the race, as you can see in the blurry picture below.

Blue Ridge, Roanoke, beer

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During the race, I met Ginny (@ginny26_2 on Twitter), who like Krissy recognized the shoes. We ran together for about a half mile up the mile 2 hill until I made the half marathon turn up Mill Mountain.

Ginny has a great recap of her marathon experience on her Happy Feet 26.2 blog.

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Lastly my fellow co-worker Josh (@nsydyrhd on Twitter) was volunteering and hanging out at the finish area. Despite feeling pretty miserable, I made sure I was having a good time.

Finish line, Blue Ridge Half

Blue Ridge Half, finish

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Two years ago I called this race an "Instant Classic." This year I feel exactly the same. My race performance aside, this is a must-do event for me for years to come.