5k marker cheerleaders

Today was the TC10k and the Half Marathon in Victoria, BC. It is a large run that takes place with typically 9000 or so people participating. There are some who run or walk, some in wheelchairs and others who are being pushed in strollers because they are just too tiny to take part yet. I have taken part in this event for a few years now but it wasn’t until today as I stood on the sidelines did I see all the people who do take part.

My friend Katie and I went to be cheerleaders for our friends we knew taking part. Our friend Robynne requested that we be at the top of the hill near the 5k marker. She would then be halfway and it would give her the extra encouragement she may need to get to the end. It seemed to be the perfect spot for support for everyone. When we saw Robynne she came over to give us high 5 and she was looking strong and happy. She has come so far in her running and we are super proud!

Katie made up a two-sided sign that she changed up from time to time for people to read as they went by. The above picture of the sign was the one that got the most attention and reactions as people went by. Everyone loved it and some actually slowed down to show us that they were “breathing and smiling”. It was awesome. I had made up a sign that said “Run your run” and I rang a Frontrunners cow bell.

Sign and Frontrunners cow bell
Sign and Frontrunners cow bell

We encouraged everyone along and cheered loudly. People were smiling, thanking us for being there and even giving us high 5’s. We both saw familiar faces of fellow runners and friends who were taking part. It was great to see them out there and smiling when they would see us. Some of them even waved us down to let us know they were there because we hadn’t seen them in the sea of people coming at us.

My friend Amanda also was back running her first race since her bike accident the end of February. I saw her smiling face along the run and text her after to see how she felt. She was on a high and happy with her run! I followed up with some other runners and they set PB’s and were happy as well! YAY!

Typically when a race takes place and I am not doing it I am wishing that I was but today I really enjoyed being a cheerleader. I know when I am running I always love seeing people cheer along the way. A few weeks ago when I was at the Merville 15k race I was trying to read a sign a little girl was holding up. The sign was great and said “Keep going! You’re running off your Easter candy.” It made me smile and I went up to the little girl after and told her thank you. I also let her know that I veered off the road trying to read it and she laughed. Guess I can’t read and run at the same time.

So, if you have the opportunity to go and cheer on a friend taking part in an event…go! They will appreciate it more than you know and today I learned how much they do. I found it very rewarding for myself to see everyone so happy and how our words of encouragement were just what they needed. We even had people take pictures of us with the signs and one girl stopped to get a selfie with us. I had never had that happen before at a race.

Happy Cheerleaders
Our own selfie

So, thank you to all of you who took part in the TC10k today. You made my day!

Do you have a sign that you see when you are running that makes you smile? Have you made up a sign for a fellow runner or walker? What did it say?

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