The 2003 Chicago Marathon - Mile by Mile
October 12, 2003
A Photographic journey

Page I of III

I wanted to visually capture as best as I could "what it's like" to run a large marathon.  The 2003 Chicago Marathon, with over 40,000 participants, ranks the highest in number of participants of any marathon in the World.  Because nothing but the best would suffice to you, the viewer, I carried a Nikon digital SLR with a wide angle 12-24mm lens.  I shot over 250 images, sometimes while running, sometimes while pausing on the side.  Below, in sequence is a photographic journal of the Chicago Marathon, which we can comfortably enjoy without having to run 26.2 miles!

(s = 35mm, d = Digital, m=6x7 Medium Format, l= 4x5 Large Format)

The exposition on the day before the race, where runners pick up their packets. (d)

 

 

Before the race - over 40,000 runners self-assemble according to expected pace times. 
Elite runners are separated and placed at the front.  We begin near Grant Park, facing North.  (d)

 

 

As the race was about to begin, runners shed layers of clothing, which can be seen tossed in the air. 
The morning temeperatures began around 50 degrees. (d)

 

 

The race began, but we haven't crossed the start line yet.  It will take 15 minutes
after the race begins before we reach the start line.   (d)

 

 

Finally, we reach the start line!  The field is very crowded, and at this point,
we begin transitioning from walking to running. (d)

 

 

TV cameras recording the event as we head North towards Lincoln Park. (d)

 

 

Above on the bridge fans can be seen, cheering the runners on.  Over 1 million
spectactors attended the race. (d)

 

 

Running underground. (d)

 

 

Crossing the Chicago River as the sun rises to the East. (d)

 

 

Water and Gatorade stops were provided approximately every 2 miles. 
Below is the carnage that's left of all the runners preceeding us. (d)

 

 

Many musicians came out for the race, representing many styles. (d)

 

 

The Powerknobs were doing a great job cheering us on! (d)

 

 

Y..M..C..A..!  Cher can be seen in the background.  We are around mile 10 or so. (d)

 

 

Multiple Checkpoints occured during the race.  Each runner had an electronic chip tied to their shoe
which individually records their time as they ran over the red mats that can be seen ahead.  (d)

 

© 2006 John Miranda