This past weekend I ran the Denver Rock n Roll half marathon. So yes I am a little "half crazy" at the moment, this being my 5th half marathon this year (and I have another one in 3 weeks!). I truly just love the experience of races and if I am going to run that far anyways I might as well get a medal for it! I also LOVE the Rock n Roll series. They have the best race expos, awesome race course in amazing cities with bands that play every mile, and so much excitement that comes with big races. Don't get me wrong-I love the small intimate races too but they lack the excitement and energy of one that has 18,000 people running. Since moving to Colorado, I hadn't really seen the town of Denver so what better way to take a tour of my new city?!
I got to meet Dorothy Beal at the race expo (EEK). She is a marathon and all things running lover, and a mommy of 3 who is inspirational in the world of "mother runners". She lived in the town next to me in Virginia, we ran the same paths, and we had many mutual friends which is how she got on my radar. I started following her blog but seeing our connections it is funny how I never had the chance to actually meet her until being in Colorado. Check out her blog at mileposts.com! And of course the race expo itself was amazing (besides the fact that I had to corral my 4 kids there). If you look closely in the background of this picture you will see Asher playing in the Mazda booth "wind tunnel" and Josie behind us wearing my race t-shirt. There were booths after booths of running gadgets, energy foods, race info, and games to play in order to win prizes. I always spend a bit more money than planned but still happily left this expo with 2 new pair of pro compression socks, a flip belt, 2 Sparkly Soul headbands, and a new running water bottle (runner's retail therapy!).
The start line with 18,000 other runners. There were 5 races to choose from in this event (all starting at the same time!): marathon, half marathon, marathon relay, 10K, and 5K. I had originally wanted to run this marathon but backed it down to the half when I realized how long it was going to take me to adjust the elevation in the mile high city. It was a bit chilly but knowing what a beautiful day it was going to be I chose to wear shorts and t-shirt (with a pair of my new compression socks of course). I always scour the closet the night before a race for a "throw away" shirt to shed at the start line and stop myself from freezing while waiting in the corrals.
The race started and finished next to the town hall, one of the many beautiful buildings I would get to see along the course.
|Photo taken by Amy Zader (@runwritehike on instagram). Thanks Amy|
We also got to run by Coors Field (home of the Colorado Rockies)...
|Photo taken from JoeBucsFan.com|
...And Mile High Stadium (home of the Denver Broncos).
Joel is a saint as he again corralled the kids (after a 5am wake up so we could leave the house at 5:30 to drop me off at the start line) and still managed to see me 3 times during the race! Nothing makes this girl run faster than high giving my kids along the course. Their shouts at the end always bring me home and are what spurred me to push that last mile even with an uphill climb to the finish.
And I finished in a time of 1:47.52 seconds (at an average of 8:13 minute per mile). I had no idea what to expect of myself on my first road race in Colorado. I tried to enjoy the miles and not really obsess over my Garmin. At some point I knew I wasn't going to PR but said I was still going to give it all I had. I am SUPER happy with my results and think I just might be adjusted enough to the elevation now to start adding some speed work back into my running routine-YAY! I will be chasing my half marathon (and marathon) PR down in no time! BTW, don't you love my socks!?!?! I got so many compliments on them and I LOVE them. Bright colors make me happy.
The race ended at the Capital and I couldn't help but snap some photos with the crazy clouds! Thank you Denver and Rock n Roll series for a sweet race! There is nothing like a runner's high at a mile high!!