Monday, October 23, 2006

On the other side

Working a Gatorade stop @ the Chicago marathon was third behind the following things:
1. running the chicago marathon (done)
2. running the chicago marathon with Amy (will do?)


I will admit, it gets boring once the runners turn to walkers and handing out gatorade to the walkers is just as thrilling as… well, no analogy needed – as thrilling as it sounds to hand a cup to someone who is walking.

The real excitement is with the fast ones. There is strategy:
- You need to hold the cup from the top, between thumb and pointer finger. This way the runner can grab the cup in natural cup grabbing motion. This also means if it is very cold, your fingers will turn numb, and if you are wearing gloves, your fingers will get soaked — and ultimately turn numb. Might as well forget about the gloves.
- You must concentrate on each handoff. If you're not on your game, gatorade will end up everywhere, ground, hair, clothes and that is not the point of the task. The point is as little spillage as possible.
- The way to make this happen is to follow your hand with the pace of the runner, until you are quite positive that he or she is really holding it. Then you need to release in a perfect upward motion, not left or right because that will lead to spilling. This is very complicated when you are moving your hand leftwards, then must simultaneously release upwards. And you absolutely must release. It is very easy to hold on for too long — you're not sure if they're ready to hold the cup themselves. But you have no time to ask them if they're ready to hold alone. They are running a marathon for christ's sake! That is why you must have talent, you must have skill, you must have a sixth sense. You absolutely must know the proper time to release. And that is if you even get that far.

Now tips for marathoners:
- a thank you is always appreciated, and will get you personal encouragement
- if you are running on the left side, don't grab with your right hand, and vice versa. Seriously people, WTF? That just complicates the whole process way more than is necessarry.
- If you are aiming for a particular cup, signal to the cup holder that you are coming for her cup. This is a good idea for several reasons. 1. she knows not to give it away to anyone else 2. she can physically and mentally prepare herself for the extremly faced paced and extremely complex process of handing off a cup of gatorade that is about to happen.

Enough digressing on passing out Gatorade. You're reading this and are embarassed to know me. Oh yeah?!?! Well I'm embarassed that you know me too.

No comments: