SFM Expo

I just got back from a short, easy run in preparation for tomorrow's race. It was overcast and cool again, which seems to be the trend of the moment. I like it! Yesterday a colleague and I took an extended lunch to pick up our race packets at the expo. It was scheduled to open at Noon, and we got there just a few minutes before then.

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A line had already formed and extended around the building.

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When the doors opened, they controlled how many people could enter a time. It took us a good half hour of waiting before we finally got into the building.

Once inside, it wasn't very crowded at all.

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Bib/Chip Pick-Up

When I originally registered for this race, I signed up to run the First Half marathon (in addition to the 5K, this race offers a full marathon, the first half marathon, or second half marathon). But taking running barely any miles in June, I decided to switch to the Second Half, which doesn't have as many hills, and the ones that it does have aren't as steep. I made this switch over a month ago and it was rightfully reflected on my Runners Confirmation Sheet.

The bib lines were organized by Bib # and my bib read #15700, which was a number for the First Half. When the volunteers gave me my bib and chip, it read the First Half. I showed them my confirmation sheet and pointed out that it read Second Half. They didn't know what to do and directed me to the Solutions Desk.

So I had to stand in line at the Solutions Desk. There was a volunteer walking around trying to find out what our issues were. When I told her mine she also had no idea what to do so I had to keep waiting in line.

Once I got to the actual desk, I explained my situation and the girl told me, "Well you're in the computer as the second half, so your chip will just be timed for that."

I explained to her that:

1. I didn't want hassles from any volunteers/officials at the start line of the Second Half for wearing a First Half bib.

2. I would qualify for the Half It All Challenge (a special medal if you ran both half's in consecutive years) and I also didn't want any hassles trying to get my medal.

So she ended up giving me a new Second Half bib chip, but sadly, it doesn't have my name on it. It's okay, I can live that.

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Oh and she also moved me up a Wave. :/

Race Shirt

Next we moved onto the race shirt pick up. Since this is the town of the World Champion Orange and Black team, I was thrilled to see that the race shirts were orange!

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I love that it has the GGB on it. It's long-sleeved and on the arm it reads, "Worth the Hurt", the slogan for this race.

Half It All Challenge

My colleague and I had run into a friend of his at the expo who was also doing the Half It All Challenge. We had been wondering what the process would be for that.

When I switched races, I had asked the staff person who corresponded with me about it, but didn't receive a reply. The day before the expo I was surfing the race's Web site and saw that I had to "purchase" it, meaning I had to register for it by adding it to a shopping cart and checking out, etc. even though there was no cost for it. It would have been nice to have some correspondence on this. Even after receiving the confirmation email of transaction, there was no other information on what to do.

So at the expo, we asked at the Information Desk and found out that we had to go to Half It All Challenge Desk. Oh ok. So we circled back through the expo and found the desk.

The volunteer working there tried looking up our names from last year but didn't find them. Then she tried looking up our registrations from this year and couldn't find them. Instead of giving us a hard time she finally said, "I trust you" and put the special sticker on our bibs indicating that we were eligible for it. God Bless her.

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App

One new thing about this year's SFM that I think brilliant was the iPhone app!

It has all the information for runners, spectators and for those of you who want to track runners.

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This along with the Virtual Race bag really indicates the race's efforts towards being green. I love it!

The rest of today will be spent doing last minute errands, then I'm heading up to the City to the expo, dinner and then getting ready for race day.

Good luck to everyone running SFM!

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