What's with this serious look, Heather? Somewhere between miles 9 and 11. Eugene Women's Half, 2010 (That's my girl Juliette next to me)

I finally broke down this week and ordered a couple of digital race photos taken during the Eugene Women’s Half over Labor Day weekend. I’d gotten a couple of emails from the photography company, and initially I thought, nah, I don’t need these. Plus, I figured they probably weren’t all that great. Nothing against the photogs — I’ve just never seen a picture of myself mid-race that’s seemed worth the not-so-cheap price tag. Typically my face is distorted in an ugly grimace. Or the extra, um, middle I can’t seem to shed no matter how many hours of pilates and running I rack up is right there, front and center, and I just can’t imagine forking over cash to have that image in my possession and on display for anyone else to see.

But the thing is, I wish I had more photos of me running and racing. By myself and with friends and family, who are either there to run with me or who are coming out to support my race. Who really cares how great these race pictures are anyway? (OK, I still do a little. But I’m going to get over it. I’m doing something I love and capturing that to look back on is more important than any jiggling body parts or funny facial expressions.)

The awesome feeling of finishing. When else can you pump your arms in the air?

I guess I just haven’t yet figured out the art of getting pre- and post-race photos. Unless there’s a family member there at the finish line –probably one without three excited and busy kids taking up all their attention — I just don’t have the photos I’d like to have. I carry as little as possible when I head to a race — I prefer not to use the bags some races provide for extra clothing. And I suppose I wouldn’t ever trust a camera in one of those bags, either. I even find secret spots on my car to hide keys so I don’t have those on me either. Pre-race, I’ve gotten a few good ones, but I think the post-race ones are especially cool.

So, I’m working on the picture thing. Ordering two from the Oregon race is a start.

How about  you? Official race photos: nay or yay? Any tricks to share about capturing awesome pre-, mid- or post-race photos?

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