Please welcome my Cruiser and Moms RUN This Town friend Amanda as she takes you on a tour of DC during the recent Rock ‘N’ Roll DC Half Marathon. Amanda is a busy working mom of two who joined the Cruisers over a year ago. She ran her first marathon, the Marine Corps Marathon, last fall and has run several other half marathons and local 5K’s. She has gone on to become a chapter leader for our local MRTT group and is an inspiration to all who meet her! Without further ado, here’s Amanda…
My third running of the Rock ‘N’ Roll USA Half Marathon was an incredible team experience. From the decision to run (over drinks at a girls night out), through the worst winter for training, to crossing the finish line together, we relied on each other to get it done. In the beginning we had seven women ready to sign up, but one had just had a baby and another got injured, so neither could run the race. That left only Maria B, Laurie, Courtney, Elizabeth and me toeing the line on race morning. Without a doubt, our other two friends, Teresa and Maria E, will be joining us at our next race.
We stayed in DC the night before the race even though we live only about 45 minutes away. Our mini getaway would allow us to save time on race morning, but more importantly it would assure us of a good night’s sleep and we wouldn’t be left at the mercy of our children’s nighttime schedules!
Elizabeth and I are co-leaders of our local Moms RUN This Town chapter and all of our R’N’R team are members so we wanted to be included in the MRTT pre-race group photo, and left the hotel for the metro at 5:50 AM for the 6:30 photo shoot. This worked out great, and helped us beat the rush. There were runners on the metro, but it wasn’t crowded and there were no lines at the fresh and clean porta potties. After the photo, we headed across the mall toward the corrals. The music was pumping and we did a little dance-walk to our corral.
It was about 50 degrees with 15 mph winds at the start, but we had hand warmers and an extra layer that kept us comfortable, especially since we used the buildings to shield us from the wind.
We had great matching “kits” according to the guy at Mile 2. We all wore pink tanks with ‘Moms ROCK This Town’ logos and great sliver sparkly skirts. Elizabeth had the most amazing guitar earrings!
As we ran, the winds died and the temp rose to about 57 degrees. We saw the sun a few times, but we were thankful to have clouds protecting us. The weather could not have been more perfect. After we crossing the starting line, I realized Maria had fallen behind so I ran back to make sure she was okay to run alone. She said she was, so we continued the race as a team of four.
Since this race was as much about looking good as it was about getting our team across the finish, I wanted pictures. I pre-briefed the team about where the race photographers would be, yelled out to every photographer and made sure we were together for the finish photo mat. Laurie thought my obsession with the photos was hilarious.
Courtney and Elizabeth had struggled a bit with injuries through training. They did a great job of managing the delicate balance of enough running without worsening their injuries. It was both Elizabeth and Courtney’s first half marathon and Laurie’s second. Laurie kept the lead for most of the race, always making sure we stayed together. There was the “hill of all hills” at mile 6, and we decided ahead of time to walk it and take in our GU. The rolling hills in the last half proved to be challenging, but we kept going, walking just through water stations. My husband stayed home with the kids, but everyone else had family at multiple points in the race. It was great seeing them and they did a wonderful job navigating a crowded city on race day to be there in support of us.
Overall the race was well organized from the quick and easy packet pickup, to a great expo (we stayed 3 hours!), to plenty of porta potties with improved locations over last year, to awesome bands and crowd support, to beautiful medals, and good post-race food complete with chocolate milk!
It was such an amazing feeling for us to all finish together! Our finishing times were all within a few seconds with a 2:15:00 for me. A long, cold, snowy winter of training paid off with success! I couldn’t be more proud of what we accomplished together.
- Have you ever run a race as part of a group that stayed together the whole time?
- What’s your favorite outfit (or “kit”) that you’ve seen at a race?
- Moms, have you looked into joining your local MRTT?