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6 Tips For Taking Photos While Running a Race

by Meghann on February 13, 2012

The best part about ordering take-out pizza from Anthony’s?

The next day leftovers for lunch.

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Derek and I ordered two large pizzas from Anthony’s last night, which ended up being too much for our ‘we’re only just a little hungry’ foursome. There was still a TON left at the end of the night and Tyler insisted that we weren’t allowed to leave unless we took some with us. FIne by us – we love pizza.

Derek took a few pieces to work with him this morning and I heated up two for lunch today.

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If there is an Anthony’s near you, allow me to recommend the cauliflower pizza. Besides having cauliflower on it, I’m pretty sure it’s not healthy in any way, but man it is good. It’s very buttery and the roasted cauliflower literally melts in your mouth.

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I paired the pizza with some microwave-wilted spinach and blue cheese

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And some surprisingly delicious Publix steam-in-a-bad edamame.

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The steam-in-a-bag edamame is a new one for me. It was actually pretty good. I was expecting it to be rubbery (there’s nothing worse than rubbery edamame), but it was perfect. Another win for Publix. ;)

6 Tips For Taking Photos While Running a Race

The truth: I’ve kinda, sorta turned into a crazy blog lady when it comes to certain aspects of my life. Running races is one of those crazy-blog-lady aspects and taking photos while running races is just an extension of that.

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Yep, I’m that runner. The one with the camera who is snapping away as she passes you by (or – more likely – that you’re passing her by).The worst part is I’ve actually fine tuned a system where I’m actually semi-good at it. Yep. Nerd.

Here are a few tips I have for other crazy-blog-peeps out there on how to take photos on race day while still nailing that PR.

1. Find a way to run with your camera that’s comfortable for YOU (before race day)

I’ve run with my camera in a spi-belt, a newton-running belt, a jacket pocket, a back pocket, and in my hands. Honestly? I’m probably most comfortable with the camera in my hands. There’s something a little nicer about just carrying something rather than having it bounce around on your back or front.

Sunday I started out with the camera in my hand, but ended up moving it to the zipper pouch of my Gracie’s Gear Sports Bra.

Gracie’s Gear Sports Bra pocket is my favorite. It’s a very secure pocket and really doesn’t bounce around that much. My only concern with keeping anything in the pocket is sweat. I’ve drowned a phone before while storing it in my sports bra (not in the Gracie’s Gear pocket) and have a fear of the same thing happening again with other electronics. Luckily, yesterday was a cold day and I didn’t sweat as much as I usually do.

Also, the sports bra was very easy to pull the camera in and out of without having to tug at a belt of out-of-reach pocket. <- huge plus!

2. Get a secure grip.

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When my camera is in my hand, I make sure the wristlet is securely wrapped around my wrist. I even involve a finger or two to make sure I don’t lose the grip.

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To keep my arms from getting tired I’ll subconsciously switch between each hand every mile or so.

3. Sports settings

If your point and shoot has a sports setting, make sure it’s set to take photos in that mode during the race. The sports setting favors a higher shutter speed, which will make it easier to capture fast-moving objects and reduce blurriness.

4. Stand still

Pictures still a little blurry? Here’s a secret – in past races I’ve stopped (for 2 seconds tops) to get a non-blurry photo. Both Savannah and Las Vegas come to mind for that. Both races I was running with other people and just held back for a milli-second to take a photo then run to catch up with my buddies. However, yesterday I got lucky with beautiful clear skies and remembered to change my settings ahead of time.

5. Take several photos at once

Yesterday I took a few photos at the very beginning

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One photo at the 10k mark.

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And a few at the pier.

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I took my camera out a total of three times during the race, but it looked like I had it out a lot more since I took different angles and spread the photos through the post. The tip here is to take different angles, so it looks like a different spot on the course and just take photos of the things that are worth remembering. I took the 10k photo when I realized I was about to mid-race PR and wanted to capture the moment. I took the pier photos because it was just too beautiful not to share. The view was amazing.

6. Don’t let the photos control your race

Racing is fun. Taking photos is fun. But the minute taking photos becomes a big ball of stress – stop. Don’t let the frustration of multiple blurry photos ruin your race.

Yes, I pulled the camera out during my race, but taking photos wasn’t the biggest concern on my mind – racing was. If I didn’t have any race goals, I’m sure I would taken more photos, but achieving my goal was more important to me than documenting it. That feeling of accomplishment is worth more than any picture of it.

If you don’t like running with your camera – then don’t. If you don’t like taking photos – don’t feel pressured to. It’s YOUR race! Run it how you want to run it. :)

Do you have any tips to add to the list?

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