The Spirit of the Marathon

Heading across the U.S.A. to document the Spirit of the different Marathons that each state has to offer. From one runners point of view.

-The site also serves as a Marathon visual guide.

-Send us an email to get Toky to run/document your Marathon.

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The Spirit of the L.A. Marathon Photo Essay

The Spirit of the Los Angeles Marathon

25th Annual Los Angeles Marathon. Photo essay from a runner’s point of view.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Arriving at Dodger Stadium at 6am

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Huge lines at the portable restrooms. Stood in line from 6:10 am to 7:20 am

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Elvis… or Elvises….

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Corrals

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Waiting to start. Marathon delayed because people were still arriving past 7:20 am due to traffic

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Ready to start!!!!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

While it’s a good idea to use a water belt to stay hydrated, water and Powerade are always available on the course every other mile starting on mile 3.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Runners are as diverse as the habitants of L.A.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

A “landmark every mile” in the new Stadium to Sea course is one of the big appeals of this year’s run

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

There is a guy inside the “PedEx” box. He ran the entire marathon inside that box.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

xoxo

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Finally, the Marathon starts. With 26,000 runners it can take a while to cross the start line. Each runner wears a chip (embedded on their bibs) that starts your time only after you actually cross the start line

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Another Elvis

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

It’s barely mile 0.5!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Mile 1. One loop around the stadium equals one mile. If you think about it, we can just circle the stadium 26 times and make this much easier for everyone!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Finally leaving the stadium

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Mile 2 already? Things sure go fast when you are excited. Hope it lasts.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Heading towards Downtown Los Angeles

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

On the first couple of miles is tough to pass people. The crowd sort of pulls you and you go with it.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Mile 3 through Chinatown and about to go into La Plazita Olvera.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

First “official” water station at Mile 3. As the miles progress the amount of cups increases. Most water stations slow you down as everyone reduces their pace to pick some water and make sure not to slip

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

This is the worst hill of the entire run. You must psych yourself for it. Repeat to self: “HILLS ARE SEXY”

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

A landmark every mile. The Disney Concert Hall sits at the top of the hill.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

The view from the top

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Another mile, another landmark. The Music Center/Dorothy Chandler Pavillion/Ahmanson Theater.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Still packed

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

When you reach miles that seem “symbolic” you start saying to yourself things like this: “I only have left to run 4 times what I already did + 1.2”

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Another landmark: Echo Park

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Mile 6 is the first on Sunset Boulevard.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

If you can, hold it! Standing in line will slow you down for a good 10-15 minutes. As the race progresses lines are shorter and shorter.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

With a healing broken leg, this guy was moving faster than most runners. You could just tell he has done this a lot of times and a recent accident was not going to stop him this year.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Almost in Hollywood. A group from the Aids Marathon Group cheers for their runners.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Entering the Hollywood District. The Pantages Theater.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Mile 11: Hollywood & Highland

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

It’s good to look back and know they are a lot of people behind you. At least you are not the last one!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Landmark: Chinese Theater

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Amen!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

R-e-p-r-e-s-e-n-t-i-n!!!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Mile 12. Back to Sunset and “The Rock Walk”

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Also mile 12 marks the start of injury sightings…

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Well said!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Their other sign said “If you are reading this, you are going to slow”… Oops! I’m trying!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

One of the most inspiring things of the Marathon is all the groups that run for different causes. So many of the runners fundraise, sometimes up to thousands of dollars, to support a cause that has affected them or they believe in. Sometimes a Marathon is more than just a Marathon.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Volunteers rock as much as runners!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

No matter their age, they are there all day long. Some of the groups came from nearby churches that cancelled their Sunday morning masses due to traffic and instead organized “Marathon of Service”, encouraging their members to volunteer at the Marathon (or other worthy causes on this day)

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Runner down!!!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

On this, my 3rd Marathon, I really noticed the importance of having a “Marathon buddy. You push me, I push you.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

This mural is always there. I just thought it was neat that the route was in front of it.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

"La bandera y el sombrero" Viva Mexico!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Another landmark. The Pacific Design Center. Now entering West Hollywood.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Representin’ as well….

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

From Wikipedia: “The term Legacy runners is defined as runners that have completed all of the Los Angeles Marathons. Only runners that have toed the start line on each and every race day and completed the entire course on race day, qualify as official Legacy Runners. Their numbers decrease year by year but there remains a group that is approximately 10 times larger than that of any other major marathon.”

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Food supplies from the sidelines start to dwindle after the midpoint. The faster runners have taken most of it. A very sweet lady was waiting for her peeps with snacks. She just had a couple and was saving them for the people she was cheering for. She saw my eyes staring at a banana and she told me to come get one :-) (thanks lady!)

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Now entering Beverly Hills

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Again, I can’t say enough good things about volunteers. From all walks of life. If ever I’m in a city with a Marathon happening, and I’m not a runner, I will for sure volunteer. I feel like I owe that now.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

If we decorate our cars engines, why not decorate our running engines as well?

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

These guys are barefoot!!! (and not the only ones I might add)

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Next landmark: Rodeo Drive

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Go Stephanie!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Endeavor to persevere

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

It’s easy to forget to let your body run as you trained it. You are so excited and there’s so much going around…. you start thinking too much. Reminders are nice.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Less than 10 miles to go! Wilshire Blvd.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

All the fluorescent green shirts you see on the photos are students. Students Run Los Angeles is one of many organizations that encourage students to run, be healthier, and stay out of trouble. Their fee is waived and they are provided with free shoes and running gear. An amazing organization. Look them up.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Lots of gents (and ladies) that have completed Ironman races use Marathon to train.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Indeed

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Turning to look back, just past Mile 18.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Dear Fireman, please don’t spray me with water. I am holding a $3,000 camera. Thanks.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

These little orange boxes is what keeps track of your timing

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

So you always want to make sure you don’t skip any. Some are placed randomly throughout the course to make sure you don’t cheat and skip any miles.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

So close you can almost taste it!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Another landmark: The Mormon Temple on Santa Monica Blvd.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Your loved one. The ultimate running buddy.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

You can’t help but smile and honor those runners who are doing this for bigger reasons.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Mile 20. The Veteran’s complex on Wilshire. That place is HUGE! You go through an entire mile in there.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

I don’t know the statistics but I would say about half of the runners are doing a full marathon for the first time.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Right now, I do too. Thanks to this amazing course!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

While the 22 should be a sign of relief, sometimes is a sign of despair. 4 more miles? Seems not doable.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Clever guy

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

That helps too.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

First sign of finishers coming back. We must be close!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Different people. Different reasons. All valid.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Am I dreaming?

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

That hazy palm tree is the beach. Woo-hoo!!!!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

For me, the last mile is the best and easiest mile. It’s a religious experience. You have nothing left. No energy, no stamina, no nothing. So you talk to God, The Universe, or whatever higher power you believe in, and you make a pact. You are going to be helped. And it happens. Trust me.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Ocean Blvd. Straight line to the Finish Line!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Certainly, do not give up now!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

.2 Miles to go

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

The finish line was crowded. And apparently a dog ran the marathon!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

That’s me, crossing! Dear God; THANK YOU.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

That medal has my name written all over it. “Come to papa!”

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

Way to go dude!

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

There is another “mile” after the finish line that no one tells you about. Looks like a triage area and if you can still walk, people scream at you to “keep walking”

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

The whole thing actually does end at the Pier. I thought they were just saying that.

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

This is the area where I chose to collapse

Los Angeles Marathon Photos

And that’s me with my medal.

About this photo essay:

This year marked my 3rd consecutive LA Marathon. The first time, the only goal was to finish. On the second and 3rd time, the goal was to improve my time from the previous year.

Around November I became a vegetarian. My body seems to only be able to run 13-16 miles on non-animal protein and about a quarter of the sugar I used to eat. Added to that, for some reason, the day before the marathon I wasn’t hungry at all. I knew all things were pointing to low energy and therefore my goal time wouldn’t be achieved. I decided to run/walk instead and document the run. This photo essay is the end result.

Notes

  1. spiritofthemarathon posted this

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