KP Half Marathon 2009 – Pama-Chills
What a great day. The Kaiser Permanente Half Marathon and 5K went off as perfectly as a race can. We had terrific weather, 9,400 registered runners and walkers, and over 1,000 volunteers. A special thanks go to race director Mike Taheny, volunteer coordinator Phyllis Nabhan, and the whole crew from RhodyCo.
The energy and excitement at the event was palpable. I was humbled and amazed to be in the announcer’s booth looking out at the sea of runners and walkers. They filled John F. Kennedy Drive for as far as my eyes could see. Hearing the national anthem being sung before the race was a great moment. Just as our nation must show hope in the face of a unknown times, the national anthem told the runners and walkers to have hope in the face of their unknown 13.1 mile journey (or 3.1 mile journey if you were in the 5K).
“I had Pama-chills at the start of the race,” said one club member, “And the day just got better. I’m extra proud to be a Pamakid.”
I think we were all proud to be Pamakid Runners that day. The team gathered at the start line for a team photo and then we had our first ever “Go Green” team cheer. As people went to their respective places to start the race, everyone looked proud to be wearing the green Pamakid uniform and representing the club putting on this great race. Everyone seemed to have a little extra skip in their step (my coaching calculations believe this skip in your step was worth :02 per mile on the flat and :01 per mile on the Great Highway). As I cheered on approximately 30 club members on the course, I was sad to not be racing myself. I could tell some people were taking advantage of the great conditions and were running outstanding times; I felt like I was missing some of the fun being on the sidelines.
Here are some examples of the extraordinary things that happened out on the course that day:
- A runner from the Sonoma State Triathlon club came upon a fallen runner around mile 8. He immediately went to the person’s aid. While someone else called 9-1-1, the Sonoma State runner comforted this individual as he went in and out of consciousness. The Good Samaritan took vital signs and gave one compression when the man’s heart stopped. When emergency personnel arrived the Sonoma State runner very nonchalantly resumed his race.
– After the race I was standing with Keith Johnson near the sweats pick-up. As Keith told me about his race, a volunteer saw Keith’s bib # from afar, went to retrieve his sweats check bag, and delivered it to Keith. Keith hadn’t even gone over to ask for his checked bag yet but he got a personal delivery!
A big thanks to everyone for your help with the success of this race. The half marathon is probably the single most important way our club can be visible to the running community and the general public. We showed off in style!
Keep Going Green!!