I arrived in Paris on Wednesday evening, and the city was buzzing with excitement for the marathon.
I accepted a month ago that I was not going to be able to run the marathon. As disappointing as that was, I tried to make the best of it and still went to Paris to enjoy the festivities, and to cheer on my friend (who lives in Paris and hosted me for the week) and would be running her first marathon.
We visited the expo on Thursday night. It was huge – definitely as big as the NYC Marathon Expo. The excitement was tangible and I kept trying to figure out if I could somehow run the marathon! (Answer: I could not.)
We found our names on the wall of athletes:
One of the coolest parts of the expo was the shirts from past Paris Marathons on display:
I picked up my bib number so that I would be able to start the race with Maria Laura, since you can’t enter the start corrals without a bib. I realized that it might be hard to stop myself from running the race if I got my bib, but don’t worry, I restrained myself!
At the expo we also picked up our t-shirts for the Paris Breakfast Run, an un-timed 5K(ish) run through closed streets on Saturday morning. It’s designed to be a shakeout run for the marathon, but is mostly an event for international tourists. We were also handed small flags of our countries when we picked up our shirts, which we refused to run with on Saturday.
I ran into someone from Prospect Park Track Club at the start, a woman who had joined since I moved to London so we had never met before, but it was nice to chat with another Brooklynite!
Maria Laura and I took the run at a very relaxed pace, taking lots of breaks for photos along the way.
We stopped for lots of photos by the Eiffel Tower, since it was of course a tourist run…
After the run (which ended up being 2.8 miles, not 3.1) we got breakfast by the Eiffel Tower, since it was a breakfast run! There were croissants, pains au chocolat, and coffee and tea, as well as the standard post-race water bottles and bananas.
I recently bought this awesome custom shirt from Sarah Marie Design Studio, so I had to take advantage of the scenic backdrop of the Eiffel Tower while we were there!
The Breakfast Run was a great way to still enjoy running through the streets of Paris, since I wasn’t able to run the full marathon. It was also a good way for Maria Laura to test out running in the heat. The forecast for Marathon Sunday was a high of 78 degrees, very unseasonably warm for early April in Paris. Our bodies aren’t used to running in the heat yet (it takes about 2 weeks to acclimate to a new temperature each season!), so it was good to experience running in 68 degree weather and realize that it would be even hotter the next day.
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