Blue Angels Rock N Fly Half Marathon

Most exciting part of my weekend: I set a new half marathon PR! I ran the Rock N Fly on Saturday and finished in 2:10:30. I finished my first half marathon (less than a year ago) in 2:22, my second half in January in 2:15, and now I've taken another 4 minutes off my time. I'm gunning for that sub 2 hour finish. I think 2015 will be my year! So, a bit about the race. I was provided a free entry to help spread the word about it. They used to do a half marathon on the Navy Base years ago but they stopped for whatever reason and this was the first year under the new name of Rock N Fly. It sold out at 2500 participants. Friday afternoon packet pick up started at Seville Quarter, one of the most popular bar/club/restaurant complexes in downtown Pensacola. 2014-03-29 06.48.23

I've been to Seville dozens of times but I never noticed the dress code posted outside the doors before. I loved the line about 'No running, jogging, or athletic outfits' given 50% of the people picking up packets were wearing that.

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I was pretty disappointed with the packet pick-up. There was a line wrapped around the building to even get into the place which I've never seen before. It was raining hard all day that day so I spent 20 minutes in the rain waiting to get inside. Once inside it was total chaos. No one seemed to know where to go and the place was way to small. I finally figured out where I needed to be and a lady took my number and yelled back to one of the volunteers to put my packet together and handed it to me. I wanted to ask her if there had been any update to the race schedule since it was predicted to rain heavily Saturday morning but I couldn't even hear what she was saying it was so loud in there and there was a line of people waiting behind me that wouldn't appreciate me taking any more of her time. I think there were like 3 vendors there but I left as soon as I got my packet because it was so chaotic.

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It turns out the race was postponed an hour but they didn't make the announcement until 9 p.m. Friday night and posted it on facebook. I feel bad for those people who don't check facebook regularly as I'm sure a lot of people got there at the original time and had to wait around longer then they expected.

As far as the race itself I would highly recommend it. The course was extremely flat, and a good portion of it was an out and back with decent beach views. There was music at every mile marker, but I was kind of surprised there were not any port-a-potties or gu at all on the course. My favorite part was around mile 10 the course looped back by the start/finish area so there was a huge crowd there cheering everyone on. That's the time where I usually start to fade a bit so that definitely gave me a boost of energy I needed.

Since I was sick all last week I didn't know how realistic my plan was but I hoped to maintain a 10 minute mile pace. I'm thinking all the extra rest and hydration I gave myself helped because I killed it! I stayed between 9:55-10:10 the entire race. I tend to start out to fast and burn out by the end so I'm more excited about keeping a steady pace the entire time (and not stopping to walk at all!) then getting a PR.

Every other race I've completed I've felt like I didn't give 100%, that I could have pushed myself a little harder. Not this time. I gave it every ounce I had and it payed off. 2014-03-29 11.49.08

It makes me excited and terrified for my marathon in a month. I mean, I really have to do that times 2!?

When I got home I went straight into recovery mode with some healthy food, compression gear and foam rolling. I took a nap after lunch and woke up with a horrific headache. I think it was due to heat exhaustion from being in the sun all morning. The temperature was around 70 and with 90% humidity it was an extremely hot 2.5 hours.

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I absolutely love the race shirt! Often times the smalls are still to big for me and this fits perfectly and is so soft. 2014-03-29 18.16.12-1After lounging around the house all afternoon (minus a quick trip to Publix for sushi and Arctic Zero ice cream) I managed to put non workout clothes on and meet a friend downtown to watch the sunset and have a celebratory drink. 2014-03-29 19.01.15-1

Fried Oreos may have happened as well.

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I went to bed exhausted from the day and woke up with Salem like this. He sleeps by my head all night, every night.

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I'm not sure what got into me but I went into overdrive Sunday morning and cleaned the house and did all my food prep before lunch. I boiled some eggs to have with oatmeal and yogurt for breakfast, and for dinner this week I'm having this Super Berry Quinoa Salad.IMG_7562

For lunch I'm finally trying the 'salad in a jar' thing (I know I'm so unfashionably late to this party.) This is the Mexican Chickpea Salad recipe from Back to her Roots. I didn't use the chili-lime dressing as I want the salsa I used to be the main taste 'star'. I used the Publix brand mango salsa which is so delicious I eat it by the spoonful for funsies sometime. I'm interested to see how fresh it tastes by Friday.IMG_7568So, as you can see, my weekend was pretty amazing. I've still got a lingering cough but I'm feeling 90x better than I was last week and I'm hoping I can ramp up my miles again. I'm pretty effing nervous about my marathon. There's this little voice in my head that's telling me to just switch it to the half instead, or just cancel the whole trip and save money, but that voice is a nasty little person that needs to stfu. I've got 20-21 miles on the books for Saturday so hopefully that will build up my confidence again. Or totally destroy it. We'll see.

How was your weekend? Have you tried the 'meal in a jar' trend? Success or failure?