Well, I did it! Yay! I ran my first half marathon. I am so excited to have accomplished this goal of mine. Three other girls and I went on a girls weekend to New Orleans to do the Rock-N-Roll half marathon. We drove in the day before the race, got there in time to pick up our swag bags, bibs etc. check into the hotel and then we went out for dinner. We ended up walking around quite a bit looking for a place as all the places were packed due to the extra 22,000 people there for the race. We ended up at the restaurant that was at the Hilton called Dragos. It is a very fancy restaurant and was very busy, but we lucked out and got seats at the bar and were able to order food there. Unfortunately for me it was a seafood restaurant so there were not any vegan options, but I was able to piece together a meal for me of rice, seasonal veggies and potatoes. After dinner we made our way back to our hotel and got ready for bed and all our race stuff ready. I did get a little nervous at this point, but just for a short time.
The next morning we all got up and ready for the race. I nourished my self with water, coconut water, and then a chia seed parfait that had chia seeds, almond milk, maple syrup, blueberries, and granola. My awesome sis-in-law who booked the hotel got the one right by the start of the race so we were able to see the start of the 10K race from our window, and then we just walked out the hotel and got in line for our race. Great planning. That is the way to go if you are able to. Then, the race started… and you see I was not sure if I was going to do intervals with the group or keep a constant pace like I am used to. I had not trained much so I just decided to go based on how I feel, and well about a mile in I decided to keep my constant pace. I knew the girls were going to be having fun along the way with the bands, taking pictures etc. and I kind of wanted to do that, but I also wanted to see what I could do in my first half marathon. You see, I ran long distance track and cross country in high school, and continued to run for exercise after high school, but this is the longest I have ever ran. I feel like this is crazy that I am just now doing this when I have considered myself a runner all these years. Not that you have to run this far to be considered a runner, but I am sure most runners have the goal of a long distance feat. My ultimate goal is a marathon, but that will come in time… Like this next year if my feet hold out! You see, I was supposed to run a marathon back in January, but in October my plantar fasciitis flared up really bad. It actually flared up on my 12 mile long run when I was training for the marathon, the day after I signed up for this half marathon. Maybe it was a sign that I needed to do a half first, and that is how it worked out. I took about 3 months off of running to heal my feet, and then slowly got back into it about 6 weeks before this half. I had no idea how it was going to go since I had never ran one before and I did not feel like I had trained enough, but I did surprisingly well with a time of 2:03:10 AND MY FEET DO NOT HURT! YAY! Now my legs are a bit sore due to not getting to train as much as I needed. After we all finished we stretched, took some pictures with the whole group and then got on the bus back to our hotel.
Once we were back to the hotel we got cleaned up, ate, rested and then it was time to go to Bourbon Street. Oh my, that place is CRAZY, WEIRD, DIRTY and quite HILARIOUS when you are sober. Lets just say there was a lot of drinking (not by me), mechanical bull rides, karaoke and lots of laughs. The group of girls were so much fun. The three I was with were the calm ones. The extended group were crazy fun…. and made us laugh so much. We ended the night with a dinner at a place on Bourbon street ( I had fries for the second time that day. Not a vegan f riendly city. Good thing I like potatoes.) and then an Uber ride back to the hotel at about 10. We watched some of the grammies, and then went to bed.
We headed back the next day. I had such a blast, but was happy to be home.
Here are some pictures from the trip.
I look forward to my next half, this time with a bit more training and see how I do.
Have a great one!