On Sunday morning I ran my first race of the year.  I was in New Orleans in 2012 for the marathon and this time I ran the half marathon.  I left Saturday morning along with my two sisters and my nephew.  Lola wanted to join us but had to stay at home.  She was definitely missed.

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Time to hydrate at the airport.  Seriously, Contigo water bottles are the best.

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Once in New Orleans, I went to the expo to pick up my bib.  I was in there for 20 minutes.  My goal was not to buy anything. Mission accomplished!  I was tempted to sign up again for next year.  I mean, $50 is seriously a great deal.

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This little park was next to our hotel.

Later I met a few friends for lunch.  I was so hungry because I hadn’t eaten anything since breakfast early in the morning in Chicago.  We went to Pierre Maspero’s and I had a beer along with Fettuccine Alfredo with Blackened Shrimp.  It was delicious.  Then we went to a couple of bars to check out the music and to drink.  Well, I did not drink but my friends did.  I did see the cutest cat.

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For dinner I had made plans to meet with Rebecca.  I met her in 2013 in San Diego when she ran the full and I the half marathon.  My goal was to finish before her and indeed I did.  🙂  She is so much faster than me and her race began 30 minutes before mine.  I did not meet her for dinner because I had a late lunch but I did see her after the race.

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Race day.  I had coffee and a waffle at the hotel.

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As for the weather, it was perfect!

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For some reason I thought the race started at 7am (that was the start time for the 10k) so I left the hotel at 6:30 since I still had to use the bathroom and check in my gear.  I then found out that it started at 7:30.  Oh well.  I looked for Rebecca and Sam but I did not see them.  I did see Jaime and a few minutes later it was time to go.

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When I began training for this race, my goal was to finish under 2 hours (Goal A).  Let’s say I had bad and good runs throughout this training period.  However, I did have great runs during the month of February.  I was confident but was still prepared for Goal B which was to finish under 2:17.  That is my PR from 2013 and I came so close to it last year.

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I was feeling great till about mile 6.  That is when my legs began to hurt.  They felt tired too.  I took an ibuprofen and stopped at the medical tent for some of that pain spray (cannot remember what it is called).  None of that worked for me and I ran/walked the rest of the way. I was disappointed.  The weather was great.  It was a flat course.  Some parts of the route was sunny but for the most part it was all shade and it was WONDERFUL.  I did not understand why I could not pick up the pace.  By mile 10 I was around 1:46 and with some quick math I figured that I could still PR as long as I ran the rest of the miles at 10:30. That did not happen.  My last 3 miles were done at 12:00, 11:36, and 11:51.

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All this time the marathon and half marathon runners were running the same course but it was time to split up around mile 12.5.  By then I just wanted to be done.  There were people giving jello shots and you bet I took one.  Why not?  I was almost one.

Official finish time is 2:24:26.  Done with race #138 and half marathon #63.  I am disappointed with how my race went on Sunday.  I know I should be happy that I finished the race and that I ran another half marathon (and I am).  However, I can’t help it knowing that I trained for this race for months and then for it not to go as I expected.

My coach told me “Shake it off.  It’s not a reflection of your hard work or self worth”.  So true.  I am not giving up.  I still have a few more half marathons this year and I know I will get my sub 2 this year.

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Next race is the Live Grit 10 Miler on March 19.

14 comments on “Rock ‘n’ Roll New Orleans”

  1. Regardless of the outcome, you finished a half marathon! CONGRATS! You should be proud! I agree with your coaches. There will be many other runs! NOLA is a fun place to run 🙂

  2. I hate it didn’t turn out like you expected, but I’m glad you finished! I so wanted to take the jello shot, but when I came by they looked all picked over! I did take advantage of the $50 special for next year, got a cool tank too! I’m headed on over to check out your 2nd post!

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