I still don't know what she's running from.
September 23, 2007 9:14 PM   Subscribe

Marathon Support: What can my roommates and I do for our other roommate after she runs a marathon?

One of my roommates will be running a marathon in about two weeks. The rest of us plan to be there (either somewhere along the route or at the finish line) with a gigantic banner and loud, enthusiastic voices.

What can we do when she's done that will show her how proud we are, and/or that will help her relax? We're looking for inexpensive ideas because we're all students. Her boyfriend will likely be there as well, and I'm sure he'll take care of the post-marathon meal or well-deserved hotel room.

Any other ideas?
This thread was a little helpful, but we want something to give to her upon finishing the race. I'm leaning towards making a shirt, but I need it to be very, very clever.

Thanks in advance!
posted by gursky to Human Relations (18 answers total)
Best answer: Maybe make some t-shirts with iron on letters or the paper you can print up and iron on with her name and face? A la Forrest Gump, "RUN ROOMMATE RUN!" Super cheesy, but it's cute and silly and everyone should get the reference.
posted by banannafish at 9:28 PM on September 23, 2007

I agree with banannafish, t-shirts and chants are a great idea. Or use an old sheet to make a big sign that says something smile-inducing. "Go Roomate Go!" Maybe bring pom-poms?

If you really want to go the extra mile. Have all your roomies chip in and get her a gift certificate for a post-marathon massage.
posted by heatherbeth at 9:46 PM on September 23, 2007

Second the massage afterwards.
posted by Kadin2048 at 9:49 PM on September 23, 2007

Best answer: Is it in a warm weather city? At the end of my first marathon there was a small kiddie pool full of ice water to soak your feet. Oh sweet heaven.

At the end of the race I want: ice for my feet, flip flops, and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches (lots of 'em!). Also appreciated: a wet hand towel and a dry towel to clean up a bit and a clean a dry shirt to wear home. Bring toilet paper. Lots of races have very poorly stocked port-o-lets - particularly if you're at the end of the pack.

FYI - lots of people get the blues after a marathon, particularly their first marathon. There's so much anticipation and then it's over. You're tired for a few weeks afterward. The best thing you can do for her is be a bit indulgent of her for a few weeks if she needs it.
posted by 26.2 at 9:53 PM on September 23, 2007

Remember to take pictures of her while she is running, especially near the end when you can see she is tired, but still going to finish.
posted by lain at 10:12 PM on September 23, 2007

If permitted, safe to do so, and she's ok with it, run with her or bike along side her for short stretches. It can be great motivation, especially in the final stretch. But don't run her over!

For post-race recovery, saunas, jacuzzis and massages are absolutely heavenly. A day at the spa would be awesome. Thirding the gift certificate.

Otherwise, buy her a new pair of shoes, identical to what she wears now. If she's trained properly for the race, they will be rather dog-eared by now. Give them to her AFTER the race, as it's unwise to race in shoes that haven't been broken in (and she might not be able to resist the temptation).
posted by randomstriker at 10:46 PM on September 23, 2007

nthing post race massage/pamper - it's a great gift. Immediately after the race let the runner sit down, and basically wait on them hand and foot, bring drinks and snacks if that's what they want, go fetch their kit bag so they can get changed.

But strike a balance between being helpful and overcrowding them, which in my experience is the last thing I want, at least in the immediate aftermath. (I had someone try to record a post-race podcast once!) Also, if I had someone with fresh legs running alongside me I'd want to punch them in the head, but friend may be a lot nicer than I.
posted by poissonrouge at 1:17 AM on September 24, 2007

Cosy warm clothes to change into straight after the race and then a nice long bath (hot or cold depending on what you think she will prefer)

Also give her time to chill...she will be relaxed with endorphines but probably not the sharpest (wit) she has ever been. She will feel great and elated but also a tad tired.

Alcohol can be nice in moderation, but better to mix or limit to soft fizzy drinks to raise the sugar levels again. Energy bars are good.

Guess, overall, just pamper :-)

PS. If you get any photos, they would be great to have up on the laptop/TV
posted by pettins at 2:00 AM on September 24, 2007

Best answer: The rest of us plan to be there (either somewhere along the route or at the finish line) with a gigantic banner and loud, enthusiastic voices.
Trust me when I say that whatever else you do, this will be appreciated and remembered for a long time. She'll feel like a hero.
posted by Wolfdog at 4:00 AM on September 24, 2007

Best answer: She probably won't be able to walk for a couple days after the race, so you should be there to basically wait on her hand and foot.
posted by mpls2 at 4:04 AM on September 24, 2007

Add one of those portable airhorns... those things are a bit obnoxious, which is just exactly perfect for making a great memory. :)
posted by Malor at 4:07 AM on September 24, 2007

Best answer: Can you hang up signs or write something like "Go [Roommate]" on the pavement in chalk? Especially around mile 20 where most people "hit the wall" - that's a great spot to put a little extra encouragement. (And especially so if she's running Toronto... mile 20-21 on that course is pretty drab looking and there aren't really any spectators cheering on that stretch.)

Also, you might want to pass on this unsolicited advice: taking an ice bath after the race (along with some good stretching) cut my recovery time in half. I highly recommend it.
posted by AV at 4:33 AM on September 24, 2007

Best answer: Casually ask her what she craves on the long training runs (for me it's Pepsi and Fritos). Bring that to the finish.
posted by probablysteve at 4:47 AM on September 24, 2007

Response by poster: brilliant!

thanks, everyone!
posted by gursky at 7:49 AM on September 24, 2007

In the half marathon I did last year, the last mile was the hardest. For a full marathon, I bet it's even worse.

Try to be there cheering at as many points as you can along those last miles. I didn't have anyone cheering for me and I would have felt so spurred on if there had been "fans" out there yelling my name. Strangers do it, but it's not the same.
posted by I_Love_Bananas at 9:31 AM on September 24, 2007

Pool your money and buy her a massage.
posted by blue_beetle at 9:36 AM on September 24, 2007

I second that you find good places to cheer her on. If you can, stand on multiple places along the road. If you cannot, I agree that the 20 mile point is a great choice, even better than the finish. Bring some food just in case she wants something to eat then.
posted by davar at 10:11 AM on September 24, 2007

cook her a great meal
posted by SageLeVoid at 11:08 AM on September 24, 2007

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