Last weekend we rocked the Rock ‘n’ Roll New Orleans Marathon. It was great to be in the “Big Easy” again and enjoy the sites, sounds, and food. We stayed at the beautiful Drury Hotel located downtown in the business district. All in all we had a wonderful mini-vacation/marathon experience.
After getting our race bibs and shirts we did the customary wandering around. Then at noon we went to hear Kara Goucher speak for 30 min. It was standing room only, but I still really enjoyed hearing her speak in person. She seems down to earth and a combination of humble yet competitive.
The Race Expo
On the way back to the hotel room we saw Shalane Flannigan walking around. How cool is that?
There were several elite runners here for the half marathon. Another notable woman besides Kara and Shalane was Meseret Defar from Ethiopia. She won the woman’s half marathon with a course record of 1:07:25.
Shalane Flannigan was second with 1:08:31 (a new PR for her and the 3rd fastest half time by an American woman). Kara Goucher, coming off a heel injury, came in 5th.
In the men’s half marathon, UK Olympian Mo Farrah (gold in 5,000 and 10,000) set a new course record in his second half marathon attempt coming in at 1:00:59. He currently trains in Portland, OR. Second place was Gebre Gebremarium of Ethiopia with 1:01:00.
The marathon wasn’t nearly as competitive and the majority of runners in this race did the half marathon. Out of approximately 15,000 runners there were only around 3,000 who ran the full marathon. The male winner was Meyer Friedman of San Diego with a time of 2:28:43 and the first female finisher was Karen Lockyer of LA with a time of 2:52:23.
Our Finishing Times
I felt more relaxed this year because my goals weren’t so lofty and was more prepared for the course and things that I’d encounter. I think I felt more nervous for Trevor, praying that he’d stay strong and break 4 hours.
I made a few mistakes like starting back in corral 12 and waiting in a long line for a port-a-potty. But I really enjoyed the sites this year- the architecture, waterfront and people watching.I got to see Trevor on the out and back section and we high fived each other. I knew then that unless something major happened he would definitely break four hours. I think at that point I relaxed and enjoyed the race even more.
I didn’t struggle as much with the middle section of the race and actually had a lot of energy left to push faster the last 3 miles. I made a game to see how many people I could pass and didn’t let anyone pass me. My finishing time was 4:01:40. I’m a little disappointed that I didn’t finish sub-4, but I have to remember that 2 months ago I couldn’t even run a mile.
After finishing a marathon I always feel incredibly blessed to be able to run marathons, thankful for the little bit of speed that I have, and for the joy of running.
Trevor started up in corral 5 and ran a steady race. He stuck to his fueling plan and enjoyed the musical selections on this ipod. His official finishing time was 3:54:15. I’m so proud of him!