Race Recap: NOLA Half Marathon

Last weekend I ran my 2nd half marathon.  I ran the

Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon

in New Orleans.  This was my first destination race & I really liked it!  Jaime & I traveled together & shared a condo in the French Quarter that we found on


.  But we weren't alone.  About 40 East Nasties were also there to run the race.

We got there on Friday & treated ourselves to a drink at The Carousel Bar & a fancy dinner at


.  The food was good, but we were a little underwhelmed.

Saturday was a full day.  We started with brunch at the highly recommended

The Camellia Grill

.  It was so good!  Y'all, that's butter, not OJ!

After brunch, we headed over to the race expo to get our race packets & hear Olympians speak.  Olympians, you say?  Yes, a whole mess of Olympic runners ran the half as a training run.  No pressure!

We spent the rest of Saturday afternoon walking around, shopping & riding the St. Charles Streetcar.

Another New Orleans restaurant that came highly recommend is


.  We ate our pre-race dinner there on Saturday night.  I mean, everyone eats fried chicken & bread pudding the night before running 13.1 miles, right?

Sunday - race day!  We woke up early & made our way to Corral 17.  I thought we would have to wait a lot longer than we did.  We were off & running in about 20 minutes.  The weather was great.  The first 7 miles of the race was an out & back along St. Charles Avenue, which was nice.  I love looking at all those huge old houses.  There were a lot of spectators & live bands set up every mile.  It was a good start.

Around Mile 10, I saw this huge inflated rocker dude that we had to run under.  Obviously, I stopped & snapped a pic.  OBVIOUSLY.  The last miles from Mile 10 to the finish were on horrible roads.  You basically had to run with your head down because of all the potholes & broken pavement.  It was also hell on our feet.  And there were no spectators along this part.  I felt fine, in fact, I felt a lot stronger than I did at the end of my last half marathon.  It was just boring & got a little tedious with the roads.  I kept chanting to Jaime & Lana, "Channel the HAM!"

We finished in City Park, which is a gorgeous park.  I ran the entire race with Jaime & Lana.  Heidi started with us, but left us soon after as she's a little bit faster than we are.  Even though my NOLA finish time is 9 minutes slower than my

1st half marathon

, I felt stronger during this run.  Last year, I really struggled to finish, but this year I felt great the entire time.  I'm a slow runner, but I'm a strong runner.  I'll take it!

East Nasty had a designated meeting spot in City Park, so we met up with everyone to celebrate.  In true New Orleans fashion, you get free beer & jambalaya after the race.  It was delicious.

After a nap & a shower, we all met back up at Pat O'Briens to continue the celebration.  One of my best friends from college was also in town for the race & we met up for the first time in 14 years!  We had an obligatory hurricane, then moved along.  It stormed that night in New Orleans & we were without umbrellas, so these ponchos happened.  Ballers!

We eventually ate dinner, then called it a night.  Before our flight the next day, we grabbed brunch at


, which turned out to be my favorite meal of the trip.  I ordered the Eggs Benedict Poor Boy & it was delicious!  And our server was from Nashville!

After one of the worst flights of my life, which you can read about


, we were back home.  But there's no rest for the wicked, as we're registered to run the

Oak Barrel Half

in Lynchburg on April 6, a mere 4 weeks away.  Stay tuned!

For more details on the race, read my post over on

the East Nasty blog


Full NOLA photostream



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