What do you do when you've already signed up to volunteer for an event and someone else asks for a favor? If you can, you find a way.
Action 203 - Double Up.
I wanted to be involved in the Ragnar SoCal Relay Race in April, but I can't afford to enter yet another event with all that I have already signed up for. So I decided to volunteer. I searched Facebook for a random team that sounded fun, introduced myself, and offered to field one of their three must-fill volunteer shifts. No surprise, they were thrilled and accepted immediately.
And then, not two days later, I saw that a friend had posted a request for volunteers on his own Facebook wall. What to do, what to do? I wouldn't back-out on the first team after agreeing to help them, but I wanted to help my friend, too.
So, I doubled up. I'm going to work back-to-back shifts, covering one for the first team and one for the second team. I'll be working at an exchange point from 4:30am to 10:30am, then heading down to work the finish line in Coronado from 12:30pm to 5:30pm. It will make for a long day, but I will get to be twice as much a part of the Ragnar SoCal as I first thought I would be.
And why is this one of the actions that help me prepare for my own marathon in May? Because every large running event depends on volunteers. We need those people at the water stations and the confusing turns and cheering and screaming and encouraging mile after mile. Passionate volunteers can be the only bright spot on a long run, and they have made the difference for me many times.
I hope that my own time as a volunteer will help me remember to treat the Pasadena Marathon crew with courtesy, gratitude and respect. They deserve it.