After spending many months blogging about Rock N Roll New Orleans, I was really, really bummed I couldn’t actually run it. I’ve done the race since it’s inaugural event and hope to do it year after year. I love making an annual trip to Nola.
Even without me running, I knew we would be going. P was running and so were our three friends Tiffany,David, and John. It was going to be a weekend with friends either way as well as Tiffany and Davids first half marathon.
P and I arrived on Friday and did the exact same thing as last year. Oysters at Dragos and shopping on Magazine street. We changed up dinner and ate at Couchon-which was amazing! I was a major fail in the camera department and left my good camera in Atlanta-so only iphone photos all weekend. We had to split up our hotels and stay somewhere different on Friday night than the rest of the weekend. Turns out it was the pro-runner hotel as well. I managed to spot Shalane from the bar walking through the lobby. Figured it would be a bit stalker-like if I ran out and said hello but I was obviously in runner heaven. Unfortunately, we never ran into anyone again before we left for the other hotel.
We woke up Saturday for beignets and then the expo.
I knew the expo would be hard for me. P was a good sport and listened to me whine about not being able to run and mope around. He was also super supportive and hung around the expo for an extra hour so that I could hear Kara Goucher speak.
She’s so down to earth, absolutely stunning, and maintains complete grace and normalcy while returning from her injury. There were lots of Q&A’s about her running, training, goals, and competition. She basically eats what she wants, her easy pace and mileage are my dreams and is focusing on Boston. RNR Nola was her first race post heel injury.
After Kara had mentioned NUUN the same week of the race, I felt it appropriate for her to sign my NUUN tube since it happened to be in my purse. Super cool to now have met her and Shalane.
Post expo we spent time hanging out in the city and later having dinner with our friends. I woke up with P and we met Tiffany and David and I walked with them to the start. My goal was to find Holly’s mom and spectate with her and hitch a ride to the finish line after we saw everyone cross. I ended up “running” from the start to the mile 2 and 7 area. I actually didn’t have pain and kinda wondered if I should’ve just run the race.
Within a few minutes we saw the elites go by and it really was a cool thing to see. I’m usually behind them, not watching them. I saw Holly and P (but he didn’t see me) and we crossed the street to watch at mile 7. I got some pretty cool shots of Shalane and Kara, saw Holly again and we were off to the finish line.
I got there just in time to find my friend Bradley and we watched her husband John set a PR. A few minutes later I got to cheer on P as he set his new PR too! I got pretty emotional watching the finish-partly because it was hard to watch, the other because it’s really cool to see people giving it there all out there. We somehow missed Tiffany and David finish, but they both did great for their first 1/2 marathon.
We spent the rest of the day doing what you do in NOLA, eating and drinking.
I love NOLA. I hope that next year will be different and I will actually get to run it, but either way, this year was still a blast.
Ever seen the elites race? How often do you spectate vs. run a race?