Friday, June 28, 2013

Race Recap: 2013 Seattle Rock and Roll Half Marathon

I think Rock and Roll lost my photos :(...all my friends have their photos up and I don't and I don't want to wait any longer to post my recap so here it is without stolen pics with the word PROOF across them!

Ah man, this race was just pure awesomeness! It marked the 5th year since I started running half marathons and the 5th anniversary of the Seattle Rock and Roll race.  Quick trip down memory lane before we start...
Pre 2008 race - man I was SOO nervous!
2008 Seafair Half Marathon (became Rock and Roll in 2009) - my first half in a time of 2:35:xx!
2009 Inaugural Rock and Roll Seattle Half - 2:18:xx
2010 - 2:11:xx
2011 - 2:03:53
2012 - 2:02:13
2013 - 2:02:10 <--- race PR by 3 SECONDS!

Let's dive into this year's race ok?

Per usual I didn't sleep too well the night before and when I did I only dreamt about waking up late or missing the start.  Alarm went off around 4:30 and I made my pre-race breakfast and had a half a cup of coffee.
Already half eaten eggs and potatoes! Not picture - Nuun and coffee.

I wasn't going to leave anything to chance so I left insanely early about 5:30 to head to the start.  That proved to be a good idea because I scored a FREE street spot in lower Queen Anne and made my way to the VIP area to relax and get my pre-race business done (you all know what I mean).  Thanks to access to no line potties I did everything I wanted to (or thought...) and made my way to my corral to meet up with blogger friends.

pic from Stacie!
Nuun ladies! Myself, Stacie and Zoe

My running buddy and fellow 5 year runner, Lindsey, and I got in corral 7 and waited for the race to start.  My stomach decided it wanted to rebel one last time about 2 minutes before the gun went off...awesome! I vented my frustration to Lindsey who just said "don't think about it"...not so easy to do I might add!

All corraled up and ready to run

Miles 1-3

Starting in corral 7 with my speedy friend was probably not the best idea because we started ticking off 8:30 miles right away.  My stomach was still unsettled and I knew I wouldn't be able to keep up with her so I made the very smart decision to tell her to go ahead and stopped at a port-o-potty right before the 5k mark.  BEST.DECISION.EVER. I felt like a million bucks after and found my own rhythm right around the 9:20 pace. Coincidentally this exact same thing happened last year except I waited until mile 6 for relief.

Miles 3-9

We made our way south on Rainier Avenue which is not what I could call Seattle's finest neighborhood but luckily you turn off of it eventually and make your way to Lake Washington Blvd and run north along the lake towards I-90.  I was feeling strong and ticking off the miles staying in the 9:20 range the entire time.  I ate some Sports Beans around mile 7 and made sure to take water and Gatorade at every stop. While I would LOVE LOVE if Nuun was on the course I didn't want to carry my own hydration so I "suffered" with the Gatorade for this race ;).

Side note: I swore someone spectating yelled my name in the stretch on Rainier but I looked and didn't recognize anyone...was it any of you?

Miles 9-12

Into the I-90 tunnels we went and every year I honestly hate this part of the race. It's stuffy, it smelled like sewage and they had a DJ at the end bumping music so loud you could feel it in your bones...NOT in a good way.  I knew once we exited I would be greeted with fresh, cooler air and it felt so glorious! The sun was out in full force that day but I was comfortable in my Nuun singlet and shorts...should have worn a visor or sunglasses though.

The best cheer squad EVER was right at the corner after mile 10 and even though I only saw them for a split second it made all the difference and powered me though those last miles.

Photos from Sarah - thanks ladies!!!
Megan, Andrea, Sarah, Lauren, Rira, and Rebecca!

See...look how happy I am to see them!
Miles 12-13.1 (well according to my Garmin 13.5!)

My legs were definitely tired and I was ready for the race to be over with but I still felt pretty good so I tried to pick up the pace a bit towards the end.  I have to say Rock and Roll made some excellent changes to the course this year but one thing they forgot...ending a hill! But this year they made the hill longer so I would guess the last 1/4-1/2 mile were pretty much all uphill.  When I spotted the finish line I broke into my best sprint possible and finished strong.

2 hours, 2 minutes and 10 seconds <---can't help but think I would have gotten under 2 hours without that bathroom stop...darnit!

I could not chug a bottle of water, gatorade, and chocolate milk fast enough! I met up with my friend and fellow Ragnar teammate, Jessey, for some race debriefing.

Great lighting in this finish pic ;)

Post race I headed back to the VIP area to cool down in the shade and change out of my sweaty clothes before heading to the Online Shoes blogger party (recap next!).


Again thanks to Online Shoes and Brooks for the amazing experience and as always Nuun hydration for the extra water stop and all my pre and post race hydration needs.  The Nuun singlet was awesome for this race, no chafing and stayed relatively cool for the whole race...I am a fan!

Question: Do you love Rock and Roll races? Did you run Seattle? Link up you recap below please!