Rock N Roll DC Race Report!

Pre- Race
We flew in to DC early friday morning, which left us plenty of time for sight-seeing. Kevin, S & S's boyfriend and I hit the sights one by one. Washington monument, Lincoln memorial, Korean & WW2 war memorials, the white house. We probably made 5-8 miles on foot with all the walking we did.

Cherry Blossoms in bloom at the Washington Monument!

Lincoln Memorial

White House!

After, we hit the metro to get to the Expo at the DC armory. It was a quicker ride than expected, and there was no line to get in the building as perviously told there would be. All in all, it was smooth sailing, as we headed in to pick up packets & meet up with T, who was running the marathon.

Major downside? My bag was lacking swag. Coupons only, where S had free samples in hers. Bonus? Race shirts came in women's sizing, but dark blue only in XL. Since we were in a hurry to get to a tour of the capitol, we had to rush through the expo. I grabbed some free LARABARs (YUM!), and talked quickly with the KT tape guy. Unfortunately the line was 30+ minutes, but he gave me a free sample, and told me I'd be able to figure it out with the videos on the website, especially since I'm a Physical Therapist.

Next, we headed to the Capitol Building for a tour. After a ridiculous security screening (they forced me to toss my plastic Nuun water bottle pictured above), we were in for a quick video and tour.

After our tour, we finally made it back to our room to relax before heading to dinner at Founding Farmers. I got a delicious dish of scallops and butternut squash risotto, then we headed back to the hotel to get ready and go to bed early.

I laid out my gear, filled my bottles, and got all my St Patty's Day gear together.

Time for bed!

Race Day
I woke up at 5:45am, feeling completely rested (I love those Marriott beds!). I started to get ready, then headed downstairs to the hotel's starbucks to grab 2 bananas. Back to the room to get ready. S was planning on coming to my room at 6:30 since she had the bread & I had the peanut butter, but I got a text from her at 6:20 saying she just woke up. I was already getting anxious about getting there on time. I passed the time by applying as many glitter shamrock tattoos as I could.

skirt: Lululemon, tank & arm warmers: Tough Chik

Finally S arrived. I shoved down my breakfast & we headed for the metro. I was aiming to meet up with the Tough Chiks at 7:15, so we had a half hour, which we thought would be plenty. Unfortunatley the Metro was crazy. Packed trains, broken doors, and large crowds of people slowed us up BIG TIME.

Our packed train
Trying to escape the Metro

We didn't make it to the race area until 8am. Did you know the race started at 8? I definitely missed that team photo, and practically our VIP porta potties, which we got to sneak into quick before they broke down the final one. The waves were already going off, so we stood by an opening waiting for our corral.

We finally got tired of waiting, and decided to jump in and start. I came up with a race plan to work on keeping my knee happy, and getting me to the finish without limping. I would start off without S, so I wasn't pressured to go out too fast. I would walk the hills that aggrevated my knee. I would walk through the water stops. I would have fun and go at whatever pace felt right. My goal time was anywhere between 2:30-3:00.

The first half of the race was a breeze it seemed. Not too many hills, I started thinking "This could be a PR race for next year."
mile 1 10:59
mile 2 10:42
mile 3 10:38
mile 4 11:35
mile 5 12:45
At mile 5, the hills started
mile 6 11:40

I met a couple Tough Chik Teammates Lindy & Katye. They were running the relay, so we spent a minute chatting before they headed off to finish their race. It was great to meet them, even for a quick minute.

I was expecting to see Kevin between mile 6 and 7, but he was nowhere in sight. I texted him during a walk break, and I must have passed him by. I was feeling good. Stopping to stretch as needed, walking when needed. The miles were clicking by fast for me, even though I was moving slow.

mile 7 12:57
mile 8 13:05
mile 9 12:32
mile 10 12:44
mile 11 12:51
mile 12 13:46

Right before the marathon split, I saw these girls I met on the metro. They were running the full marathon in a nude bodysuit with shamrocks sewn onto strategic spots if you know what I mean. They were still going strong!

I was starting to get tired. Which weirdly made me very happy. My knee has been hurting so much lately, that I've been limited by pain & haven't been able to get tired or sprint to a finish line.

mile 13 12:23

Uphill toward the finish, toward the end I picked it up to a fantastic sprint & finished strong, squeaking right in under 2:45.

After picking up some food, I headed to find S & Kevin, listen to a little music & enjoy the 70+ weather.

T finished the marathon in 3:31.. yikes!
The good
the scenery
frequent water stops & great volunteers
Race shirt

The bad
the Metro
chaos waiting for food, very disorganized
Mile 9 waterstop... only 1 side of the street & narrow!
The medal... wish there was more of a DC feel to it!

I'll turn this the right way later
Overall Stats
Pace 12:35
5K 34:12
10K 1:13:08
10 mile 2:02:19
overall 14074/16321
Division 2683/3027
Gender 8910/10725

Post race adventures to follow soon!


Wells L said...

Sooo cool! It sounds like it was a lot better than the Cherry Blossom from last year? Sure looks like a wonderful mini vacay!

Congrats on finishing in such a good time, enjoying yourself, and keeping your knee healthy!

misszippy said...

Congrats! Glad you felt good for it--it certainly was a hot day for you all. I'm glad the cherry blossoms were in bloom for you, too.

I worked the Brooks booth on Thurs--were you there that day?

Penny said...

Congrats on a great half girl. I have never traveled anywhere for a race. However I'll be traveling for my next marathon in JUNE. It is in Duluth, Mn. SO excited to do an out of state marathon. Loved all your pic to.

Abby's Road said...

Congrats on your race! Im so sad it was the same weekend as the NYChalf. Oh well! There is always next year.

Wells' comment makes me nervous, I'm running the Cherry Blossom next weekend.

jamie@sweatyhugs said...

Congrats! I just ran this same race and OH, the hills! It was def. tough towards the end. You are also making me glad I didn't take Metro and had the hubby drop me off. :) Anyway, great race! Congrats again!

Kelly @ The Fit For Life Wife said...

Congratulations on a strong finish! And an awesome little vacay. I have lived around DC my entire life and I still haven't seen the Lincoln Memorial. Ridiculous, right!?

BabyWeightMyFatAss said...

Congrats on a great finish!

They must get a deal on shirts because that was the same shirt we had the Chicago RnR half last year but with a different logo!

Lisa said...

Sounds like a fun day and congrats on a great race. I ran this race last year and really enjoyed it. I wonder if the Rock 'n' Roll Group changed the course because I don't remember any hills.

Lily on the Road said...

Congrat's on your race, it had some beautiful sights to see!

I found the same issues with the RnR Arizona, disappointing but still fun to do.

*~*~* Tracy said...

Great job! DC is a beautiful city to run in.
And bummer they made you toss your bottle at the Capitol. Usually you can just empty it and keep the bottle.

Anonymous said...

Great job on racing smart. I hope your knee is better by now.

DC is always a nightmare in regards to traffic and metro. Even though I live close, I stopped racing there.