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What You Will See at an Expo

October 11, 2011

I’ve only ever been to two race expos (both for the same race in different years), so I’m probably not a pro, but I kind of find the whole experience fascinating and amusing, so I thought I’d share some of the photos I took while I was there on Saturday.

And yes, yes that is where I happened to drop my phone in a puddle of rain.  And no, it wasn’t a ploy to get the new iPhone.

So what will there be at an expo?


There will be too many little stations like this that you will have to make your way through just to get everything. 

And you will wonder why they can’t just stuff it all in that bag they give you… at the end.  Because that makes total sense, right?

Your race shirt will either be way too big or way too small (or way too ugly, but that’s a different story) and you will only be able to exchange it if the volunteer you ask feels like being nice.


You will finally get your bib and have to figure out what new weird timing chip they’ve come up with this time.


You will finally get your swag bag and wonder how many free samples you can fit in there before you leave.

You will watch people pose with the weird running mannequins and contemplate whether you want to become one of those people.  Just walk away.


You will see the race day weather chart and be relieved that it will neither be extremely warm or extremely cold.  Unless you live in Colorado and the weather could change at any moment. 


You will see super ugly running gear at ridiculous prices.  Please can I pay $100 to wear this horrendous color?


You will see weird things.


Really weird ugly things.


You will be told you can’t have your race fortune until you yell the fortune teller’s name as loud as you can.  Gigi was lying — I didn’t yell and she gave me my fortune anyways.

You will wonder why people are walking around in work out clothes.  The race is tomorrow, sillies. 

And you will stalk the Disney Marathon tent.  Again.  Because I’ll you’ll take any excuse to go to Disneyland.


You will see a million stickers that you would love to stick all over your car.  If not for the fact that you’re leasing your car.  I keep asking if I’m allowed to buy a 26.2 sticker if I’ve run two 13.1 mile races. 

And in addition to stickers, you will see headbands, socks and shirts that you will suddenly think you desperately need.  You don’t.


Then comes the fun part.  Where you get to get all hopped up on energy chews, gu and bites.  Not to mention whatever “magical elixirs” they’re trying to convince you you need.  You still don’t.

And more alarming than the fact that there millions of adults walking around OD’ing on energy chews, is the fact that those adults are encouraging their rambunctious children to eat them too.  I don’t want to be around for that car ride home. 

You will wait near the Larabar and Barenaked Granola tents until a rush of people come, because there’s a better chance you can grab an entire handful of free samples without A) anyone noticing and B) anyone trying to talk to you.

And even though I’m pretty sure the point of the expo is to get you to spend money, you’ll probably leave a little more excited about your race.


Have you ever been to a race expo?

Or dropped your phone in water?  I’m raising both of my hands.

8 Comments leave one →
  1. October 11, 2011 4:19 PM

    Congrats to you and Joey on the race! I don’t know anything about this stuff so I didn’t even know what a race expo was before I started reading blogs…looks fun and kind of strange! That race fortune teller definitely takes the cake.

  2. megmull permalink
    October 11, 2011 6:26 PM

    ahhh wasn’t the expo weird?? My friends and I went and well we were a huge mess to begin with but we basically just laughed our way through it… and probably got a lot of looks… its fine right? Congrats on the half!!!

    • October 12, 2011 9:56 AM

      We thought it was SO weird! But definitely laughed a lot too 😛 Congrats to you as well!

  3. October 11, 2011 6:29 PM

    hahaha this looks just like the expo I went to here in Richmond for the Monument 10K (which is our big race of the year!)

  4. October 11, 2011 7:02 PM

    I’ve never been to an expo before! Sounds fun 🙂

  5. October 11, 2011 9:05 PM

    Ha… I have a highlighter coat for running and cycling. I like to be seen/ it was on sale.

    • October 12, 2011 9:01 AM

      I knew when I posted that picture someone would say they had one! Didn’t mean to offend you 😦

  6. October 12, 2011 8:01 PM

    haha love it! I really did have no idea what to expect. I dropped my phone in the toilet. That’s nasty water.

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