Thursday, March 17, 2016

The 2016 Rock 'n' Roll DC Half Marathon Recap

Lauren and I woke up super early. Got ready and headed to Virginia. So follow me here. Woke up in Maryland, traveled to Virginia to race in DC and eventually would fall asleep in PA. Got it?

We got downtown and met with the third in our trio, Mandy. Lauren and Mandy get to run together all the time so I was super pumped to get to join the fun. 

L to R: Lauren, Mandy and I

It was decided a few weeks ago that the three of us would help Lauren get a new half marathon PR. Home girl needed a sub 2:30 for that to happen. We would be running a 5:1 run/walk interval. Most of all, we wanted to have fun together! 

We lined up in corral 18, but for some strange reason we started in corral 21. 

Lauren looked at me and Mandy and decided she was going to sprint off the line. Of course we don't stop her, we are here to have fun! The only problem is I already have to pee. Great. 

They count us down and Lauren sprints off the line. I'm legit in tears. She is pumping up the crowd and smiling the whole way. It was amazing. And yes, this is exactly how I expected this race to go. 

My urge to pee did not go away. I found a few port-o-potties by the first water stop and waited for a good two minutes in line. I felt bad but the girls were cheering everyone along. It was great.

Mandy and I tried to keep conversation going to keep Lauren's mind off of the pace. While we were running we were between a 9:15-9:35 pace and I know we cannot let her know that. 

Mile six was the huge hill. It was also where the Wear Blue To Remember volunteers would be. Last year I wasn't ready for the hill or the volunteers with the flags lining the hill. This year, I was and I was going to run up this whole hill. Lauren needed to stop for some aspirin so we had a wee bit delay in our pacing. After she pumped those pills we were trudging up this hill. Mandy and I stayed side by side and beasted that hill! I was so excited. 

We hit the 10k mark at about 1:10 on my watch. Even with our stops, we were still doing great! 

My other goal for this race was to take all the beverages out on the course. If I'm going to have fun, why not have ALL THE FUN! After mile seven was when the beverages started. 

First was champagne and it was amazing. 

Mandy was stopping to pet random dogs, Lauren was laughing at random signs and I was drinking. It was pretty awesome. 

We came up on the second beverage stop and the sign said meat beer. Lauren is screaming that I needed to stop but I didn't want meat beer! No, these guys had meat AND beer. Yes, we were missing punctuation. 

Not meat beer!

And not long after, on the other side of the street was a margarita! 

I had to wait until our next walk break to drink it, but it was totally worth it. 

That was around mile 10. My watch said 1:51. In my head I thought back to Akron. Finishing in 1:51 was one of the most heartbreaking athletic moments I've had. Today, it was liberating. I was doing it. I was having the time of my life with two amazing people. 

This was also around the time we saw Philip. He is a rock 'n' blogger who ran the 5k. He snapped some AMAZING pictures for me! 

Clearly I'm not having any fun.

Oh, and then there was one more beer. 

We passed the lovely Oiselle ladies and gave tons of high fives and Mandy petted some more dogs. Thank goodness a little bit down the road one more of the girls friend, Laura, found us and gave Lauren a Diet Coke. Girl was good to go after that! 

At the half/full split me and Mandy kept screaming for Lauren to stay to the left. Home girl has never been so excited to stay to the left. We only had about a half mile to go and we were going to accomplish our goal. Lauren was going to PR. 

We followed Lauren's lead on when to sprint, and we all finished together. Our time, 2:24 which was a six minute PR for my girl! 

Started and finished together!

I finished my 12th half marathon! My first repeat half marathon and probably my favorite course. 

This race was everything I needed. We had zero pressure, tons of laughs and just enjoyed the time together. My soul needed this race just as much as my mind. I can do this, it might take a little longer than I thought, but I've done it 12 times before, and I will continue to do it! 

A PR is always a reason to celebrate!


  1. That sounds like such a fun race! I'm trying to break 2:30 too, do you want to come help me PR in Alaska? :) On a serious note, that's so cool you helped your friend PR and that you allowed yourself to have fun and enjoy the race. Great job!

    1. I would love to help! It was so much fun and I would do it again in a heartbeat!

  2. Congrats! We're compiling a list of recaps and will add your link to our post!