26 Tips for 26 Days: Tip #19 — Get tips on navigating the course from a seasoned spectator

Tip #19.pngAs we put the final preparations in place for this year’s race, we’re sharing “26 Tips in 26 Days” to make sure you’re ready to go on race day. Click here to read them all, or follow along on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

Yesterday we shared some great places to watch your athletes. Today, we’re sharing a first-hand account from a spectator who has become somewhat of an expert at maneuvering her way around the course to catch her husband’s race. We thank Rachel Lewis for graciously sharing her tips with us. Editor’s note: these tips were from a couple years ago, but they still are relevant to our course. Additionally, we have partnered with COGO Bike Share for the first time this year on our Self-Guided Bicycle Tour of the course – please download the Tour here.

This was my third year watching the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon.  My husband has run the full marathon three years in a row and I LOVE this race.  I don’t usually go with him to other races he runs, but I actually enjoy cheering him on every year at the Cbus Marathon!

Planning Ahead

  • I always review the marathon map with my husband so he knows approximately where I will be to see him, take any gear and replenish anything he needs.
  • He knows I will always be on his left, and I make sure he knows what I’m wearing and that my sign has his name in big bold letters so he can find me easily, too.
  • I wear a backpack with some of his essentials and mine, and plenty of room for our layers as they come off!
  • We also ballpark his race pace so I know how long I have between stops. Plus the Real-Time Race Tracking app is FANTASTIC for keeping up when he inevitably gets out faster than expected 🙂

5:30 a.m. – Leaving bright and early!

  • We are lucky to have a parking spot in the Arena District (click here to secure pre-paid parking in advance).  We avoid traffic two ways: 1) Leaving extra early and 2) Taking the High Street/Convention Center exit off of 670 E (exit is on left) instead of going onto 3rd or Goodale.
  • This exit goes behind the convention center on Convention Center Drive for quick access (in and out) to parking at the Hilton, garages and surface lots which are less crowded. It also provides access to the north side of the convention center for more parking options away from the fray.

7:00 a.m.- Head to first spot – Broad Street Presbyterian (short of mile 2)

  • I don’t try to catch my husband (or other runner friends) at the start. Instead, I make my way down to Broad Street Presbyterian.  It allows for two viewing spots (this year a bit before mile 2 and around the corner at mile 8.)
  • I grab a CoGo bike at Nationwide and Front and walk it until I can hop on. We have a CoGo membership, but it is absolutely worth the $8 to have access to these for the day (again, CoGo and the Columbus Marathon partnered to develop this self-guided bike tour).  I take the bike out to Parsons and Oak to park it and walk the couple blocks to the church.
  • I’m in place by 7:30 and can hear the fireworks and kickoff music, still exciting 2 miles away!
  • A nice perk of being this far out is the chance to talk with other spectators, find out who they are rooting for and help each other cheer for our runners once they go by 🙂

7:45 a.m. – Warm up!

  • I can’t say enough how wonderful the congregation is at Broad Street Presbyterian!  Their members turn out in force to welcome spectators, offer a place to warm up, provide refreshments and – possibly most importantly – they have heavenly, clean bathrooms (they do accept donations, so I recommend bringing cash.)
  • One of my friends was a first-time spectator this year and I recommended she meet me at the church.  She was able to find parking, and navigate her toddler in a stroller to cheer on her husband in the same spots I did!

8:15 a.m. – Head to Mile 8

  • I walk the couple blocks toward the mile 8 marker and find a place to cheer!
  • After my husband passes by, I make my way back downtown with my friend to pick up another bike.

8:45 a.m. – Head to Miles 23-24

  • I pick up another CoGo bike at Sensenbrenner park and ride it up to Goodale and Front to find a safe place to cross the course without interfering with runners.
  • I take the bike down to Neil Ave and make my way to the bike stop at 3rd and Michigan in Victorian village.
  • This stop is right around the corner from Cafe Apropos, and I had time to appreciate another clean bathroom, order a latte and a bagel and find a seat on the patio to cheer between miles 23 and 24!
  • Spectator note: I really like being able to see the names of the other runners on their bibs – it makes it easier to cheer for them personally, especially if someone looks like they need some encouragement.

9:30 a.m. – Head to Finish Line

  • I don’t try to catch my husband crossing the finish line due to the crowds, but he makes sure his finish line race photo doesn’t disappoint 🙂
  • I ride back downtown and park my bike at the station on Nationwide Blvd near Arch Park and headed to the family reunion area.
  • And that’s it!  I always have fun working my way around the city, and end up getting a decent workout myself 🙂

If you have any questions, please let us know in the comment section, or ask us on Facebook and Twitter!

 

 

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26 Tips for 26 Days: Tip #18 — Spectators: know where to go

Tip #18As we put the final preparations in place for this year’s race, we’re sharing “26 Tips in 26 Days” to make sure you’re ready to go on race day. Click here to read them all, or follow along on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

The Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon offers a spectator-friendly course for you and 100,000 of your closest friends. Here are several popular places to visit on Race Day and a unique way to help get around the 13.1 and 26.2-mile course.

Bleachers At The Start: Bleachers line the north side of Long Street at the start line and can hold hundreds of spectators.  If you’ve never seen the start of the race in person, it’s well worth your time.

26 Miles of Patient Champions: 24 miles are represented by a patient at Nationwide Children’s, one is dedicated as an Angel Mile for the special children who have been taken too soon, and one is an “encore mile” for the Patient Champions from past years. These patients and their families will be along every mile of the course to cheer on participants and serve as a visual reminder of how the marathon is helping ill and injured children.

Broad Street Presbyterian Church (760 E. Broad Street): Starting at 7:15 a.m., BSPC will open its doors to all spectators to come inside for hot coffee and treats, restrooms, and warm conversation. Spectators can come and go as they please, and enjoy the hospitality center shortly before mile two. Broad Street Presbyterian Church also has a 160-spot parking lot that is free to the public.

Drexel and Main Streets in Bexley: A perfect place to take in the fall colors and amazing homes as the runners pass by. Fun fact: Bexley is home to more ice cream shops per capita than anywhere in Ohio.

Nationwide Children’s Hospital: The Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & 1/2 Marathon will run past two sides of Nationwide Children’s Hospital on 18th St. and Livingston Ave. and there will be great viewing opportunities for spectators at the park at Livingston and Parsons Avenues. There will be four different bands, butterflies on stilts and hundreds and hundreds of signs that represent those Children Champions who have been raising money for Nationwide Children’s Hospital.

Schiller Park: This German Village treasure is bordered by Reinhard, Jaeger and Deshler Streets. This year marks the 150th birthday of one of Columbus’s oldest and most scenic parks — you’ll enjoy walking from one side to the other to cheer on your athlete.

Short North Arts District on High Street: Between Nationwide Blvd. and Fifth Ave. — enjoy window shopping at the art galleries and boutique shops and have a cup of joe from one of the local coffee shops while you wait to see your athlete.

Grandview Yard: Athletes will run by the new Nationwide building and weave through the streets of Grandview Heights. For those hitting a runner’s wall at this stage of the course, there will be bands, plenty of entertainment and a flat course to help athletes push through the finish.

Celebration Village:  Celebration Village will feature the Columbus Marathon store, a medal engraver and sampling from different vendors. Additionally, there will be food trucks (Schmidt’s Sausage Truck, Kookys Cookies and Das Kaffee Haus), live entertainment by OK, Maybe and SWAGG and much more. NOTE: there will also be an Information Booth on Spring Street as you enter Celebration Village and the folks there will be equipped to handle questions ranging from how to track your athlete to how to get back to your hotel.

SELF-GUIDED BIKE TOUR

Take our self-guided bicycle tour to several cheer spots along the course! We have partnered with COGO Bike Share to put together a route to follow on a bike (see a list of COGO stations here that are close to the startline) that will let you visit key spots while not interfering with the race. Yay Bikes will offer free, secure bike parking at the Start/Finish for those of you who will ride your own bike.

If you have any questions, please let us know in the comment section, or ask us on Facebook and Twitter!

 

 

2017 Spirit Award Winners: Sarah Seither and Emily Shaub

Each year, we honor ten people in our field or 18,000 who have overcome enormous obstacles and have inspired many while they train for and participate in the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon. In the days leading up to the big event on Oct. 15, we will be sharing two of these stories at a time.

One of today’s Spirit Award winners lives in Columbus and the other will be traveling from North Canton – they both have inspirational stories to tell.

Sarah Seither 1

Sarah Seither, Columbus, OH

Sarah runs to honor the memory of her mother who was a NICU nurse at Good Samaritan Hospital in Dayton and Community Hospital in Springfield. Following each Columbus Marathon, Sarah gets a butterfly tattoo to continue to honor her mother and the work she loved doing—caring for patients. Sarah’s story was written about in ThisWeek News and you can read the story here.

Emily Shaub

Emily Shaub, North Canton, OH

Emily doesn’t allow Crohns disease and the implications of the disease: medications, pain, infusions and surgery to interfere with her “love of running.” Emily pushes through with a positive attitude that she imparts to the students she teaches and cross-country athletes she coaches. As with everything she sets out to do, Emily will run the full marathon with a positive attitude and giving 100 percent.

Thank you, Sarah and Emily, for being an inspiration to us all! We look forward to seeing you at the start line on Oct. 15!

26 Tips in 26 Days: Tip #17 — Drop off your gear to gear check before the race

Tip #17As we put the final preparations in place for this year’s race, we’re sharing “26 Tips in 26 Days” to make sure you’re ready to go on race day. Click here to read them all, or follow along on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

The 2017 Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon listens to and appreciates feedback from athletes and spectators. That’s why we take great pride in making sure you get off to a great start Race Day.

An efficient gear check makes sure you can focus on the journey ahead. The race starts at 7:30 a.m. The corrals open up at 6:00 a.m. With more than 15,000 parking spots near North Bank Park, you should be able to get from your car to the start quickly. We always recommend taking your commute time downtown and doubling it to deal with traffic. 

Participants can drop off and pick up their gear in the same location – at the Gear Check Tent at the corner of Spring Street and McConnell Blvd. (southwest corner of McFerson Park). It’s convenient and easy if you follow a few simple rules that help optimize the safety of athletes and spectators.

  • We will only accept the clear Gear Check Bags you receive at the Health & Fitness Expo during your packet pick-up.
  • All items you wish to check must be in these bags.
  • We will not accept any other bags, boxes, luggage, etc. No exceptions.

All items being carried at or near the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & 1/2 Marathon are subject to inspection.

Please ask any questions in the comment section below. You’re also welcome to connect with the marathon team on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

 

26 Tips in 26 Days: Tip #16 — Get to the start on time

Tip #16As we put the final preparations in place for this year’s race, we’re sharing “26 Tips in 26 Days” to make sure you’re ready to go on race day. Click here to read them all, or follow along on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

Runners are obsessed with time. We’re always looking for ways to shave minutes and seconds from our final result. To make the most of your 2017 experience, this tip is a simple one:

Get To The Start On Time:

To create a convenient race experience, the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon will have a combined start and finish at North Bank Park. Celebration Village will also welcome athletes and their families at North Bank Park after athletes cross the finish line. This means parking, pre-race and post-race activities will all occur in and around one convenient area.

Parking Overview:

So where can you park at the 2017 Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon? There are more than 15,000 parking spaces in the Arena District, close to the combined Start & Finish Line. You can alleviate some stress on Race Day by purchasing your parking pass in advance online.

Parking Plans:
Please make plans prior to race day to get downtown and into your parking spot well before the Race starts at 7:30 a.m. The Corrals open at 6 a.m., so plan accordingly.

We encourage you to think of how long it takes to get into downtown Columbus from your home or where you are staying. Got that number? Now double it! With 18,000 athletes making their way to the Start Line at the same time, you’ll need extra time to get where you want to be.

Parking Help:

Carpooling cuts down on traffic and parking problems. Plus, it will save you money. You can also check out CoGo Bike Sharing (offers 365 bicycles at 46 stations and have several bike stations within walking distance of the start/finish), taxis or Uber and Lyft for an alternative to driving downtown.  Car2GO is another option to consider, although advance registration is required.

Tell your family and friends to ride their bikes to meet you at the Race! Yay Bikes will offer free, secure bike parking at the Start/Finish, and we also partnering with CoGo Bike Share on a self-guided bike tour of the course – for the route, click here.

Make sure you know about any road closings/construction that may get in your way of being in your corral by 7 a.m. Check out Paving the Way’s Website for the latest road construction information, including weekend work

For specific directions to get to the start line and parked on Race Day, check out this web page.

Please note:

  • Long St. will be closed between High St. to the East and Hocking St. to the West.
  • Spring St. will be closed from West St. to the East, and Hocking St. to the West.
  • Neil Ave. will be closed from Nationwide Blvd. on the North to the combined Start/Finish Line to the South.

Have additional questions? Let us know in the comments below, or share with us on Facebook and Twitter, and we’ll be sure to get them answered!

 

 

2017 Spirit Award Winners: Emily McCune and Jeff Maynard

Each year, we honor ten people in our field or 18,000 who have overcome enormous obstacles and have inspired many while they train for and participate in the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon. Over the next couple weeks before the big event on Oct. 15, we will be sharing two of these stories at a time.

Today’s Spirit Award winners live right here in Central Ohio. These stories are sure to inspire you to keep pushing through your final days of training AND race day.

Emily McCune, Dublin, OH

Emily McCune 2

Emily and her husband Brandon lived through the pain of losing a child not once, but twice, when they lost their sons Jack and Holden, each at 31 weeks of pregnancy. Emily champions their memory by sharing her story with a raw, heartbreaking honesty.  Her transparency and strength are pillars of hope to all who know her and her story.  Last year, Emily pledged to run this marathon in honor of her boys.  She has trained tirelessly to prove to herself that in their memory, she can overcome any feat she used to think insurmountable.

Jeff Maynard, Delaware, OH

Jeff Maynard 1Jeff Maynard is running his first marathon with his daughter Hannah and participates in several volunteer programs at Marion Correctional Institution, one of which is a running club.  On September 9, MCI hosted its own marathon and half-marathon inside the prison, which Jeff and other volunteers participated in.  MCI’s residents decided that they wanted to use the run to give back to their community.  Jeff  worked with both MCI’s administration and Nationwide Children’s Hospital Charities to make this a reality and solicit donations from our community, which will be given to Nationwide Children’s Hospital.  MCI’s residents were extremely excited for the opportunity to help provide financial assistance to the care and recovery of the hospital’s patients and their families and ran hard in appreciation for the donations.  This is a true measure of how love can transform the world.

Thank you, Emily and Jeff, for being an inspiration to us all! We look forward to seeing you at the start line on Oct. 15!

26 Tips in 26 Days: Tip #15 — Engage with the online Race experience

Tip #15As we put the final preparations in place for this year’s race, we’re sharing “26 Tips in 26 Days” to make sure you’re ready to go on race day. Click here to read them all, or follow along on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

The 2017 Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & 1/2 Marathon is less than two weeks away. As athletes, volunteers, and spectators put final plans in place, we want to make sure you have all the tools you need to stay informed on the go.  Our race team has several different online ways to stay informed, get live race day updates, see photos, and ask questions.

  • TWITTER: The race team will monitor and live-tweet from @CbusMarathon – posting race updates, answering questions, and chatting with athletes and spectators. You can also use and follow the #CbusMarathon hashtag to share your race-day experiences and join in the excitement.
  • FACEBOOK: We’ll be on our Facebook page throughout the race posting behind-the-scenes photos and important updates. Be sure to “like” us to get the scoop!
  • INSTAGRAM: Follow @CbusMarathon on race day for live photos and videos of scenes from around the course, from both the Columbus Marathon social team and the athletes themselves. Want to share your race day photos with us? Just include the #cbusmarathon hashtag to your pics.
  • COLUMBUS MARATHON BLOG: We will update the blog from the Start and Finish Lines with videos, photos, announcements and more.
  • REAL TIME RACE TRACKING: Registration for Real-Time Race Tracking will be available for free starting Thursday, Oct. 5 for participants, family and friends. You can get progress reports texted to your mobile phone, or you can have it posted directly to your Facebook or Twitter feeds. Participants in the race can have reports on their progress automatically tweeted, posted to Facebook and/or texted from five checkpoints (start, four miles, 13.1 miles, 20 miles and finish).
  • SNAPCHAT: Runners and spectators, get ready to Snap! The Columbus Marathon will have two Snapchat Filters in place on race day — one at the starting line and a second at the finish line and Celebration Village. Join in on the fun by using our filters and uploading to your story or sharing with friends.

Thousands of volunteers, medical personnel and safety officials will be along the course. If you have a question, simply walk up and connect with them in-person. If they don’t know the answer, they can find another race team member who can help.

This is one of the best days of the year for our race team, and we can’t wait to share updates and talk with you during the race.

Have any pre-race questions we can answer now? Let us know on Facebook, Twitter, or in the comments below!

26 Tips in 26 Days: Tip #14 — Prep for post race recovery

Tip #14As we put the final preparations in place for this year’s race, we’re sharing “26 Tips in 26 Days” to make sure you’re ready to go on race day. Click here to read them all, or follow along on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

Athletes spend months planning for the 2017 Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon.  How much time do you spend thinking about what happens after the race?

The most important thing we can do is make sure you have a safe journey.  That’s why today’s tips focus on the best steps for a successful post-race recovery.

Our Medical Director, Dr. Darrin Bright, has seen and personally experienced several long-distance runs. Here are his best bets to ensure that you keep feeling good after the runner’s high fades.

  • Continue walking through the finish chute and in Celebration Village for five to 10 minutes. During the race your legs needed a significant amount of blood flow to supply the exercising muscles with fuel.  If you stop suddenly or lay down, the blood will pool in your legs and your blood pressure will drop, resulting in possible fainting, lightheadedness or cramping.
  • Start re-rehydrating and resume eating.  Gatorade and water will be available at the Finish Line.  In addition to combating dehydration, Gatorade contains carbohydrates and electrolytes that are important to replenish following the race. It also is important to eat something as soon as you can. Research shows that muscle glycogen is replaced twice as rapidly in the first hour following the race.  There will be food high in carbohydrates in the Finish area, or pack your own in your Gear Check bag.
  • Try an ice bath.  Research shows that an ice bath after a race can help with DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness) aka the “marathon shuffle.”  Fill the tub with cold water and pour in a 10-pound bag of ice.  Take the ice bath for 10 minutes.
  • Rest. You deserve it!  Take a nap later in the day.  Avoid running for the first seven to 10 days during your recovery.  This can help to prevent injury and ensure a safer return to running.
  • Ask For Help: There are medical professionals and volunteers across the 26.2-mile course during the race. If you have an injury that lasts for three or more days after the race, please consult a physician.

If you have any questions, please let us know in the comment section, or ask us on Facebook and Twitter!

 

26 Tips in 26 Days: Tip #13 — Finding medical help during the race

Tip #13As we put the final preparations in place for this year’s race, we’re sharing “26 Tips in 26 Days” to make sure you’re ready to go on race day. Click here to read them all, or follow along on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

With the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & 1/2 Marathon just around the corner, stretching, staying hydrated and conserving strength are some of the most important things runners and walkers can do to prevent injuries.

Over our 38 years, we’ve learned that no matter how hard you train, injuries occur. The Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon team has more than 200 medical professionals working and volunteering on race day to ensure the health and safety of our participants, spectators and volunteers.

Here’s where you can find medical assistance during this year’s race:

  • Medical Tents: Certified medical personnel are located in the Start/Finish areas and at four locations along the race course to assist athletes. In the event an athlete is unable to continue, report to one of these tents or the nearest water stop for assistance. Red Cross sweep vehicles will pick up disabled athletes for transport to the Finish Line. The medical staff has the right to withdraw any athletes from the race who appears in distress or at risk.
  • Minor Aid: Minor medical aid (i.e. band-aids or Vaseline) can be found at each fluid station.
  • EMS: In addition to medical tents, there will also be several, easily identifiable EMS units stationed at key intersections throughout the course.
  • American Red Cross first responder teams & support vehicles: American Red Cross first responder teams will be positioned throughout the course. These teams are mobile and will be easily identifiable by Red Cross signs. Red Cross vehicles will also follow athletes and be available to provide help, support or a ride to the Finish Line, if necessary.
  • Medical information: Please fill out the medical information on the back of your bib number. It only takes a few minutes. This information could save your life!
  • See Something, Say Something: Our participants are always on the lookout for each other and have flagged down medics for a fellow athlete who is struggling. Taking part in this race is important; being there for others in a time of need is important, too.

If you find yourself in distress during the race or see another runner who needs assistance, please be sure to notify race personnel or a member of our medical team. The best race is a safe race. Don’t hesitate to ask for help for you or someone you see on the course. 

 If you have any questions or concerns about getting injured along the course, let us know in the comments, on Facebook or on Twitter.

26 Tips in 26 Days: Tip #12 — Register your kids for the Highlights Kids’ Run

Tip #12Each year hundreds of youngsters take part in the Highlights Kids’ Run. This year’s run is Saturday, Oct. 14. The cost is $10 per child, with each participant receiving a medal, a hat and post-race refreshments.  A race bib will be given to each participant that can be redeemed for a free ticket to see Disney On Ice presents Magical Ice Festival at Nationwide Arena to one of the following shows: Wednesday, Jan. 24, Thursday, Jan. 25, Friday, Jan. 26 at 7 pm; and Saturday, Jan. 27 at 11 am.

NEW this year, the race takes place in the Arena District Downtown at McFerson Commons. This park is in the heart of the official Marathon & ½ Marathon Start/Finish area near the intersection of Spring Street and McConnell Boulevard.

Before the races, there is a Kids’ Run Expo featuring family-friendly organizations, activities, sports teams and demonstrations.

It’s easy for kids of any age to get involved. Race opportunities include:

  • The diaper dash (ages one to three) will be 60 yards;
  • Four to five-year-olds will run .15 miles;
  • Six to eight-year-olds will run .35 miles;
  • Nine to 11-year-olds will run .80 miles.

Parents or guardians, click here to register your youngsters online until Wednesday, Oct. 11. You also can register them in person, as well as pick up registration packets, at either of the following:

Noon to 7 p.m., Friday, Oct. 13 – Register and pick up race packets at the Highlights Kids’ Run booth at the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & 1⁄2 Marathon Health & Fitness Expo, Battelle Grand Ballroom, in Downtown Columbus.

Or –

11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 14 – Register and pick up packets at the Highlights Kids’ Run tent at McFerson Commons, near the intersection of Spring Street and McConnell Boulevard, Columbus, 43215.

Remember, Kids’ Run races begin at 12:30 p.m.