Crescent City Classic 10K Recap 2016

Saturday morning, we woke up to our alarms at 6:15 (super late by race day standards!) and got ready to run the Crescent City Classic 10K in New Orleans for the fifth time.

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I had yet to decide on an outfit, but went with bright pink to go with the Easter theming, and of course my bunny ears, which I have worn for every CCC I have run!

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We were staying at the Hyatt, the host hotel and where the expo was located, so it was amazing to just walk downstairs and there was the start line! We were waiting for the other bloggers at the start line before heading to our corral.

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We weren’t able to get everyone, (that’s what happens when your race has over 20,000 registrants, but here are some of us!

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Bobby took this one, not too sure what was going on, apparently. So glad Jen wore her ears, too!

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We headed to Champions Square and up the Superdome steps to get into our corral.

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The corrals were color coded, and the first three were seeded corrals. They had big colored banners to help you figure out where to go, but since green was in front of purple and red, we had a hard time figuring out how to get past those two corrals and into ours.

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We weaved our way through, right as the race was starting and our corral took off! Poor Bobby had forgotten to get location on his GPS so he had no idea what his time/pace was for the first two miles. We were both running alone, and of course he took off at the start and I never saw him again. I put my headphones in and zoned out. I really wanted to PR but was nervous because it was 97% humidity and it was already had to breath just standing there.

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The first mile was very frustrating because there were so. many. people. and I had to do a lot of weaving (this would come back to bite me later, but I had no choice). I started out way too fast because I knew I needed to make up time from behind stuck behind people, walking, holding hands, etc. and my first mile beeped at 8:39. I knew that was a bit too fast for me for a 10k, but I was feeling good and kept going at that pace (foreshadowing…now). We ran down Decatur and through the French Quarter.

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I was sweating SO MUCH that I couldn’t get the camera on my phone to come on because every time I tried to swipe the screen it was soaked with my sweat from my hands. Hence why the above picture of the St. Louis Cathedral is blocked by a tree. We hit Café Du Monde and honestly, I snapped the below pic and then never even looked to the side. I was SO focused on not tripping or running into anyone and on keeping my pace.

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We made the familiar turn onto Esplanade and I decided to take a picture before I got too tired to do so. I saw a bunch of people running on the opposite side of the road where it was much less congested, so I eventually made my way over there and am so glad I did. I had way more room and just felt more relaxed not constantly having to change up my cadence to go around people.

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Miles four and five were rough for me. I ran a 9:30 pace for both of those. My body felt fine but I could not catch my breath with the humidity. I looked down for most of those miles and just told myself to keep going. I stopped twice to grab water and took two sips then poured the rest down my back, as I was getting really warm.

The course was new this year, so instead of running towards the art museum and around back, we went to the side, and kind of zig zagged our way to the front of the Museum. It was kind of a tease because you could SEE the finish line but weren’t quite there yet.

The whole race I thought I was going to run a 57:00, then realized that because of all the weaving I had to do, that I would be over a tenth long so my time on my GPS watch would not match the finish time. This was frustrating because I knew I could run a 57:00! However, I knew I could still PR (old PR was 59:04) so I gave it everything I had. That last mile was so mentally challenging, but thankfully it was faster than miles four and five. I barely even looked up as I approached the finish, and didn’t even smile for the cameras. I was just powering through with every ounce of energy I had left.

According to my watch, I ran 6.31 in 58:26. (That was my official time just not official distance!) While I am really happy to have PR’ed, I knew I could still go faster, and being the uber competitive person I am, wasn’t completely satisfied. After the race, all I wanted was water. They told us to keep walking and we would get to water and our medals. Well, we walked…and we walked…and we walked. I was about to fall out! I get why they did it, as to not bottle up the finish, but the water was REALLY far away. Then we had to keep walking more to get to the finish festival.

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I bee lined it for the VIP tent, and texted Bobby who said he was where the medals were. I assumed he was just waiting for me so I told him to come on to the VIP area. The tables were set so cute for Easter!

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I immediately grabbed chocolate milk, a sandwich, and a Mimosa (great combination, I know) and took a seat.

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Our two sided medal was really cute!

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Finally Bobby appeared and didn’t have a good race. He had worked out really had four days that week (including the day before) and his legs were dead. Apparently I passed him somewhere along the way but had no idea. I felt so bad for him, I thought he had long since finished. Sad smile

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We ate and met up with some blogger friends, and then it started POURING. Thankfully, we had the tent to get under and it only lasted about ten minutes, and then the sun came out.

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More friends arrived and we just hung out listening to the music and eating and having a good time.

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The race announcer, Mike spotted us and it was great to see him. He does a great job with so many races!

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Rockin’ Dopsie headlined the event and did an amazing job. Check out this video:

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After awhile we decided it was time to head back too the hotel, pack up, and head back to my parents house. Sweet Jen and her husband had their car at the finish and offered to give us a ride to our hotel.

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We made it back, showered, packed, and left NOLA once again. We had a blast and it went by way too quickly! A huge thanks to Crescent City Classic for an amazing race weekend that just gets better and better every year!

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Disclosure: I received race entries and VIP passes for this event, however all opinions are my own.

QOTD: What race has the best post race party that you been to? Do you like the 10K distance?

Faster than Boo

It’s time for another virtual race from Gone for a RUN! What makes this one even better? It’s Halloween themed, and the medal is really, really cute. Tell me more you say?

This one is the “Faster than Boo virtual 10k”. How fun is that? Check out the great medal. He is wearing a sweatband and holding a water bottle. I love it. Boo also glows in the dark. What?!?

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There are two options for this race, the basic package and the premium package which includes knee socks.

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This race will take place October 29-October 31, so why not make it a fun costume/themed Halloween run with your friends? You must register by the 19th to get your race package in time, which includes shirt (tank for women, tee for men) race bib, and SPINNER MEDAL. You can run, walk, or crawl your 6.2 miles (and be sure to share photos on the Gone for a RUN Facebook page).

This race will also be giving back as well, so a portion of your entry fee will be going to a good cause:

By running this race you will also be supporting an amazing charity. A percentage of your race entry will be donated to Friends of Jaclyn Foundation. The Friends of Jaclyn Foundation has enriched the lives of over 600 children and their families battling with pediatric cancer. Please read about Jaclyn’s story and the great success of the foundation athttp://friendsofjaclyn.org/jaclyns-story.

GoneForaRun is proud to provide runners both a great virtual running event that promotes fun and wellness as well as giving back to a very worthy cause to help others in need. A big thank you to our community of dedicated runners for their support!

To enter, simply go to Gone for a RUN’s website and sign up, super easy!

QOTD: Are you running any Halloween themed races this year?

Disclosure: as a Gone for a RUN ambassador, I will be racing for free, however all opinions are my own.


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Crescent City Classic 10k Race Recap 2015

On Saturday, I ran in my fourth Crescent City Classic 10k in New Orleans. It is a super huge, super flat and fast road race that the city of New Orleans has embraced and turned into a not-to-miss event. It is always held on Saturday, the day before Easter. I have worn the same bunny ears for the past four years of this race!

Bobby and I were up before 6:00. We were staying at Aloft New Orleans, a hotel just a few blocks from the starting line near the Superdome (more on the hotel later). We got dressed and ready and headed to the start line around 7:00.

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The weather forecast said early morning rain, but that it should be moved out before the race, and that is would be partly sunny the rest of the day. When we stepped out of the hotel, I knew that wasn’t going to happen! It was cold and very windy. We walked to the start and took a blogger picture with the other #CCC10kblogger folks, then headed to Champion’s Square.

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On my way into the square I ran into Mindy! We chatted for a minute then I went into the square to find Mrs. Z.

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There were so many people milling about, but she texted me and we found each other near the free smoothies and coffee.

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Hi friend! Fun fact: At this race, in this exact same square last year is when she told me she was pregnant! Her due date was a few weeks after mine but she ended up delivering before me!

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We decided to head to our corral early because last year it was a bit chaotic. They had the short fences up and people were jumping them, and there was no one guarding corrals to make sure people went into the proper one. However, this year was MUCH much better! The corrals were much more clearly marked, and they had volunteers standing at the front of each corral checking bibs. They also had the tall fences around the corrals, but sadly I still saw MANY people lift up the fences and sneak into different corrals.

All of the sudden, it felt like it was getting colder…and then it started raining! So we stood in our corrals like a bunch of cattle, getting rained on. It was kind of a miserable way to start the race, but what can ya do?

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I was very pleased with the corral organization this year though! We made it up to the start line, and after a shout out from my race director buddy Mike, we were off!

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The first mile or two was pretty crowded, but it evened out a lot once we got past Café du Monde and the French Market on Decatur.

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We made the turn onto Esplanade, and I stopped to get water for the first (and only) time at mile 3. It was nice and cool, and the huge oak trees on Esplanade provided great cover from the rain.

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There weren’t as many spectators out as there has been in years past, however there were still a couple of fun beer/mimosa/margarita “aid stations” out on the course.

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We turned left as the museum of Art was in front of us, and went around and then inside the park. Usually I hate this park of the race when it’s sunny because that’s when you realize just how hot it is without the shade of the trees. Luckily the rain had stopped, and we kept on trucking. At mile 5 we saw a guy take a nasty fall on some uneven roads (which are everywhere in NOLA!) He hit his FACE, I felt so bad for him. Luckily a lot of folks had already stopped to help him. I took one quick 10 second walk break, and we made it back into front of the museum of art. Aaannnddd that’s when the heavens let loose! I was already dying/out of breath being just a half mile from the finish line, and the torrential rain on top of that was not pleasant. You can see just how dark it got all of the sudden in the next photo!

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We made another familiar turn, and I could see the finish line in the distance! For some weird reason I didn’t do an all out kick like I usually do, I just kind of trotted through to the finish. Not sure what I was thinking? Anyway, we finished in a respectable 1:03:30, which is around 4 minutes shy of a PR. Considering I have only been running long slow miles since having the baby, I’ll take that.

We got our medals and made our way to the VIP tent. It was time to EAT! Jambalaya, red beans and rice, mimosas, and sandwiches were plentiful.

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Oh, and wings form Hooters.

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We met up with some of the other bloggers and had our own little table where we chatted about the race and such. It was fun to get to relax and hang out with everyone.

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Of course we had to take another group picture!

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It was pretty chilly, especially because I was sweating, and sadly not as many people stayed for the after party because of the weather. It was a bummer because the day before the race and the day after the race were beautiful and sunny.

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When I felt like I couldn’t take the shivering anymore (hello isn’t it Easter weekend in New Orleans? Why so cold?!?)

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We headed to the bus line to get back downtown. I had my fingers crossed as we made our way over to the bus line, because this was my big complaint from last year. They were only loading one bus at a time last year even though they had 10 buses waiting to be filled, and we stood around forever. Sadly, it was the same story this year. I timed it, we waited in line exactly 30 minutes to get on a dang bus. They thankfully had someone “directing traffic” and putting people on the buses, but were only loading buses two at a time. I wish they would count off 40 people, send them to bus 1, then count off 40 more, send them to bus two, so on and so forth and load 5 or 6 buses at a time. Maybe next year? Or maybe I should volunteer to man the bus line? I would have that line moving in no time!

We made it back downtown and had to walk a few blocks back to the hotel, but since it was just a 10k I wasn’t sore or tired so we weren’t hobbling back to the hotel like we have been for other races!

Overall, we had a great experience and I can’t wait for next year! Here is my pro/con list:

PROS:

-very low entry fee

-expo (with free food and beer!)

– everyone gets a shirt and finishers medal

– amazing after party with food, beer, bands, things for the kids to do, booths for other races, etc. (Open to the public for $10, runners get in free).

-free shuttle downtown before and after the race

-fast, flat course

-timing chips for all runners

CONS:

-Lots of people so it can get crowded and congested

– waiting in line for bus back downtown for 30 minutes

-uneven streets/I almost fell a few times

The pro’s HEAVILY outweigh the cons, and this race has improved year after year. I wouldn’t miss it! If you have any questions about the race feel free to ask, I would love to have you join me next year!

QOTD: Have you ever run a race in the rain?

**Winners of my Airborne everyday giveaway are Elle Pink and Vunda Vall. Please email [email protected] to claim your prize!

DISCLOSURE: I was provided a free race entry, pasta dinner, and VIP

Crescent City Classic Race Expo 2015

On Saturday, Bobby and I ran in the New Orleans Crescent City Classic 10k. This is a HUGE race with around 20,000 runners, that winds through the French Quarter and ends at city park with a big post race party! This was my fourth classic, but oddly my first time at the expo! In years past I have always had people picking up my bib for me.

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Friday Bobby and I arrived in New Orleans and parked at the Hyatt where the expo was being held. In true New Orleans fashion, they had free beer and red beans and rice. I also heard earlier in the day there was a second line that came through the expo.

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We got our bibs and wandered around a bit.

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We took a look at the course map to see what side of the street we needed to be on (last year was a bit of a mess trying to get into the corrals so I had high hopes for this year).

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Of course the husband smelled food and was at the table before I could even say anything to him.

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Free beer! When in New Orleans, right?

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They had several booths for other races at the expo, as well as some apparel and gear booths. I thought it was pretty good for a 10k, and am glad we went this year! You also could get a picture with the Easter bunny! I passed, but did get a picture with my bib.

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After the expo we headed to a pasta dinner put on by the race at the hotel the expo was in. It was a buffet and had a pretty good selection! Great job with the expo CCC, we will be back!

QOTD: Do you like when expo’s have free food and samples?

Disclosure: I was provided with free race entry and pasta dinner tickets, however I was not required to write this post and all opinions are my own.

Rock ‘N’ Roll New Orleans 10k Announced!

it’s official! The Rock ‘N’ Roll New Orleans marathon and half marathon will have a fun new addition in 2015: the 10k distance! Not quite ready to tackle the half? You can still participate in the race weekend with the all new 10k.

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Here is a picture of the race course:

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***Enter code LOOKINGGLASS10k at checkout for $5 off 10k registration. ***

Also in other news, the marathon course will be undergoing some changes from last year as well. Here is the new course map:

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If you are familiar with the area, you may find the below turn by turn changes beneficial!

  • Turn left onto Carrolton, out-back to Canal (access lanes on the outside of Carrolton)
  • Marconi one way to Robert E. Lee (allowing southbound travel on Marconi)
  • East on Robert E. Lee (in eastbound lanes, leaving westbound lanes open for travel) to St. Bernard (St. Bernard will be used out-and back to Lakeshore Dr.)
  • Out and back on Lakeshore Drive to get necessary distance (past UNO/Elysian Fields, similar to the turnaround location last year)
  • From St. Bernard, we will return to City Park on the east side of the park using Wisner to Harrison Dr.
  • West into the Park on Harrison Dr. to the round-a-bout and south on Diagonal Dr. (whole road once inside the park)
  • From Diagonal, left on Magnolia by the Bark Park and Left on Zachary Taylor Dr. to Golf Dr.
  • South where Golf Dr. turns into Henry Thomas Dr. and around to Roosevelt Mall and the Finish.

As you can see, lots of exciting stuff happening as we get closer to the main event. I am so excited for the 10k addition, it means more of my running friends will be joining in! The 10k is a great middle distance if you know you can run a 5k but aren’t ready for a half marathon. You can do it! Go sign up!

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QOTD: Do you like the 10k distance?

Emma Kate’s birth story, part II will be up tomorrow or Thursday!

Virtual Race Entry GIVEAWAY

 

My blog friend Shannyn is hosting a virtual race, and I am giving away a free entry! It is the first ever virtual Pug run to benefit the Northern Illinois Pug Rescue.

You can participate in the 5k, 10k, or 1 mile option and get the beautiful medal on a ribbon mailed to you. If you want to sign up or donate to the cause, the cost of the race is $27.

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If we can save 26.2 pugs, Shannyn’s fiance will run the Chicago Marathon in this singlet.

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From Shannyn:

“We want to save 26.2 pugs, for a donation of $7,860.  As my fiancé runs his marathon at the Chicago Marathon, we’d like to dedicate each of his miles (and the .2) to changing the life of one pug and fundraising for the Northern Illinois Pug Rescue.

That’s right.  You can support the cause, and run or walk on your home turf between now and October 12th, when Chris runs in a pug singlet (seen above) and you’ll get a shhh-weet unicorn pug diecast medal mailed to your door.

To hit our lofty financial goal, we’d have to have over 375+ participants.  To be able to afford to do bigger medals, we’d need to hit 500 medals to get a better discount and still hit our $7,860 goal.”

Want to win a FREE entry into this virtual run and get your medal for free? I am giving away one entry to a THLG reader! Mandatory entry as seen below in the rafflecoptor widget is you have to SHARE about this run in some way. Either in your own blog post, tweet about it, make a facebook post about it, and LINK THE POST IN A BLOG COMMENT ONT HIS POST or your entry will not count.

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Tomorrow I will be back with my weekly pregnancy update, I cannot believe I am 34 weeks today! My goal for this week is to get the car seat installed and maybe even start on getting the crib put together. I think that will make me feel better. I read about these other pregnant women that have everything all together by this point in their pregnancy and it is making me a little panicky. I know I am “behind” because of the move, but I can’t help but feel like my due date is quickly sneaking up on me and I DO NOT feel ready to have a newborn. AAAHHHH! But I still can’t wait to meet her and also get back to feeling like myself again. More on that later.

See the rafflecoptor widget below for instructions on entering the race entry giveaway.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Crescent City Classic 10k Recap 2014

This was my third year running the Crescent City Classic, and this year was by far the most enjoyable.

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Last year I was going for a PR, so I was really stressed out the entire time and didn’t have as much fun. This year, being pregnant, there was no chance of a PR so Bobby and I decided to just take it easy, enjoy the course, and take lots of photos. I am so glad we did, we had a blast and got to see several blogger friends as well.

We stayed the weekend at my parents about 35 minutes from the race start in downtown New Orleans, so we woke up at 5:15 so we would have plenty of time to drive over to the race.

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Gorgeous sunrise on the way across the lake.

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We parked at the Superdome, and hung out in Champions Square while we waited to meet up with some other bloggers.

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We had to go through a security checkpoint to get to this area and the corrals, but luckily we were there early so there were no lines.

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Panera Bread and Community Coffee were both set up in the square with free cinnamon bagels and coffee for the runners. The weather was great, a little chilly to start but it definitely warmed up!

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We met up with some blends, and before we realized it the race was about to start so we had to dodge and weave to get into our corral.

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Larisa, Jen, me and Nicole.

Just 25,000 of my closest friends.

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We hit the starting line, crossed over the timing mat, and were off on a 6.2 mile adventure! We started in front of the Superdome then headed towards the French Quarter down Decatur.

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As soon as we started running, I immediately had to go to the bathroom even though I went when we arrived at the race. I knew this would happen, and kept my eyes open for a good time to stop. I knew we were coming up on some well hidden public restrooms, so we ran as I looked, and before I knew it we were passing St. Louis Cathedral.

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Then we passed the always delicious Café du Monde.

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Finally I spotted the bathroom, and luckily there was no one even in there, hooray! I felt much better after that and we continued on through the quarter.

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We turned onto Esplanade, which is a great street to run on because it is entirely shaded by huge beautiful trees.

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I loved looking at all the old homes, and there were so many spectators cheering us on!

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We passed one of my favorite sights on the course, free beer and breakfast! Oh, the breakfast is alligator sausage. Only in New Orleans my friends.

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I passed on the sausage and beer, but a lot of people were taking it!

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These folks had free mimosas. Yum. If only I wasn’t pregnant I would be all over that!

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The miles were ticking away, and soon we were coming off of this street and out into the sun towards the park and the Museum of Art. I remembered these last couple miles being tough because there is no shade and no great scenery to look at. We took a few walk breaks because I didn’t want to get overheated.

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We made it into the park, and had a mile to go. The Saints mascot gumbo and the new New Orleans Pelican mascot were out at the mile 5 water stop, so of course this girl had to get a “character photo.”

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We were in the home stretch as we passed the museum of art. Only .3 to go!

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We rounded a corner to the last .2, which I love. It’s a gorgeous oak tree lined street. I kicked it in and we pushed hard to the finish.

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We did it! Our time was 1:19. Definitely my slowest 10k and over 20 minutes off my PR, but also my most fun 10k! I felt very accomplished especially with how I had been feeling. I took two Tylenol before the race to help with the round ligament pain, and it definitely helped a lot. I was still uncomfortable but it was bearable.

We walked a good bit to make it to the entrance to the race fest, and got our medals before heading in.

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Runners got in free, and spectators were only $5 which is a great deal if you ask me, all the Jambalaya, red beans and rice, and beer you can drink, plus live music!

Before we headed to the VIP tent we had to go find where to pick up our race shirts since we didn’t go to the expo, and we stopped off for some grub.

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There were people EVERYWHERE.

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We made it to the tent to discover lots of amazing food and drinks for us. We enjoyed having a shady place to hang out and eat with my blogger buddies and all recap our race experiences.

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Bobby put his name down for a free massage, too.

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Melanie, Me, Larisa, Mindy, and Holly in the VIP area after the race.

We got a text from some other friends to meet up out in the main area, so we went out to chat and for more picture taking!

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We stayed about two hours after the race just hanging out, then decided it was time to head back. I was hoping since we had stayed so long the bus line would be shorter…I was wrong. This is my only complaint about this race. Since we parked downtown, we had to take a shuttle back to the Superdome after the race, and we waited in line 31 minutes just to get on a bus, and I was so tired and ready to be on our way home. They had several busses lined up but were only loading one or two at a time, I’m not sure why there weren’t more volunteers loading up 5 or 6 busses at a time. Honestly other than that the race was perfect, so it’s really my only complaint! Maybe next year we will park at the finish and shuttle to the start instead so we can leave right after.

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All in all we had a great time and the weather could not have been more perfect. If you are looking for a laid back, fun New Orleans race this is for you. You definitely get your money’s worth, and get to experience a New Orleans after party as well as running through some great parts of the city! Not to mention it is an EXTREMLY flat and fast course, great for a PR. I can’t wait for next year, I won’t be missing this race.

QOTD: What us your favorite thing to see at a race after party?

Enchanted 10k Race Recap 2014

As part of the Glass Slipper Challenge, I participated in the inaugural runDisney Enchanted 10k with my mom.

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We were up at 2:45, dressed and ready to get to the busses by 3:45.

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The bus line was LONG and a full ten minutes went by with no bus. I had friends at other resorts telling me they had one bus lined up behind the other getting people on so I was a little perturbed that it wasn’t the case at the Boardwalk.

After about 20 minutes we were loaded onto a bus and we met up with Karen and then went to the Team runDisney meet up.

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We stayed and chatted a bit before heading over to our corrals (LOVE the short walk to the corrals for the 10k!)

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We went to the bathroom, got some water, and sat in our corral for a few minutes chatting with other runners. (Was great to meet so many readers! Thanks for saying hi!)

We were soon ushered up to the starting line, being welcomed to the first ever Enchanted 10k!

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We were off, into the darkness, turning left out of the parking lot. Look, it’s Elsa from Frozen! We even had “snow” fall on us.

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We kept on trucking, and decided to stop for the bathrooms in the median somewhere between mile 2 and 3. This is where my only annoyance for the race came in, and it was NOT runDisney’s fault.

Let me set the scene: We were out on the 3 lane highway, right before it opens to 4 lanes, and had just stepped off to the left to use the bathrooms. We had run the whole first mile, then walked just once before using the bathroom. We got back onto the road, and decided to walk a few seconds before going right back into running to get our heart rates back up. We were ALL THE WAY on the left side of the road, and the road was empty. (I think we were in between corrals at this point.) Anyway, a girl runs up next to me and starts YELLING at us for being “in the way” and said we need to learn to walk on the correct side of the road. Um….EXCUSE ME? 1.) We were ALL the way to the side 2.) The road was EMPTY so we were in no ones way 3.) Why the heck would we go all the way across 4 lanes of road to walk for 15 more seconds? Wouldn’t that be more of a hazard, cutting straight across people just to get to the right side? If we had been in the middle of the road or the right side we of course would have gone right, but we had jut come out of the left medium where the port-o-potties were. Oy. Anyone who has run a runDisney race before knows that walkers need to get to the side…any side, and that it’s impossible to just be on one side, especially when it’s super crowded. There are people taking walk breaks everywhere, all along the course, and I have no problem with walking as long as you are to the side. I was in shock, and would be lying if I said it didn’t tick me off for most of the race. Just to give you an idea of HOW EMPTY it was, as soon as I got over the shock of how rude this chick was, I took a picture to show how “in the way”’ we clearly were of all the traffic.

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Seriously. SERIOUSLY? Why ruin someone else’s race like that? I just don’t understand the mean spiritedness some people have in them. I would be lying if I didn’t notice every single person walking on BOTH sides of the road during the race after that. If I stressed that woman out when there was no crowds, she probably had a heart attack the rest of the race. Sigh. Ok, moving on.

We made it to mile three, and started the turn towards EPCOT. The boys were supposed to wake up and go downstairs below our room and watch us run by, so I started texting my dad when we got to EPCOT.

We made it around the World Showcase, and out to the Boardwalk. I let the boys know we were close, and sure enough there they were! We stopped for quick sweaty hugs and were on our way again. We made it all the way around, and were heading back into EPCOT. We were almost done! Mom was doing a great job, and I kept telling her we were close and to just hang on a little longer.

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It was starting to get daylight, and the cast members were out cheering for us through EPCOT. We made the turn backstage that I know so well, and we just had two tenths of a mile to go.

When we reached the final stretch, there were tons of fans in the bleachers cheering, and we got a mother/daughter shout out from Carissa and Rudy. Carissa even asked if Bobby was in the bed haha. We crossed the finish line, hands in the air, we did it!

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I was super proud of mom for doing the 5k and 10k back to back. We got our medals and I got my 10k finisher wristband for the glass slipper challenge, and grabbed our food before heading to the busses.

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I really enjoy the 10k distance, and the medal was really cute. I think they could do so much more with the course, but other that that I had a really good time and think it’s great runDisney is including a “middle distance” for people who have done the 5k but aren’t ready for the half, or people like my mom who has done three halfs and still wants to runDisney, but not have to train as much. It’s a happy medium, and I hope they continue to offer it. We didn’t stop for pictures because the lines were pretty long, and mom just wanted to keep going, which is totally fine. We ran the first mile, then walked probably every half mile for a minute or so after that. (ALWAYS on the side and always after putting our hand up signaling we were about to stop!) Everything was well organized and ran smoothly as far as I am concerned, except for the long wait at the bus stop. I would definitely run this race again in the future!

QOTD: Do you like the 10k distance? Have you ever been yelled at on a race course?

If you are interested in other runDisney races check out rundisney.com

Dopey Challenge 2014: 10k Race Recap

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The next leg of my runDisney Dopey Challenge journey was the 10k. I was excited for this race, because it was the first Disney World 10k, so this course was brand new.

(If you missed my 5k recap you can check it out as well).

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Can you spot the bottom of my tail in the above pictures?

We started at the same place as the 5k in the EPCOT parking lot, at 5:30 in the morning. I was able to meet up with some buddies before the race began, something I didn’t get to do the morning of the 5k!

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Rachel and Mindy

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Karla

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Divya

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Danielle

Bobby and I arrived earlier on this day and were able to get to the front of our corral. This REALLY helped as we were able to avoid some of that initial congestion getting out and onto the road.

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We got towards the front of C but not right in the front because I didn’t want to get in anyone’s way starting out faster than me.

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Also, since the course goes the opposite way of the 5k, the road opened up a lot sooner for this race which was really nice. We were out on a road quickly, and going under the overpass outside of EPCOT.

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Our plan for this race was much like the 5k, no character stops, but still taking it at a comfortably easier pace so we had some gas left for the half and full. I would say we stopped off on the side to walk for about one minute every mile or so. I met some blog readers out on the course (hi guys!) it was so great to chat with everyone and hear everyone’s race stories so far.

I stopped and took a photo with Kathryn who spotted us out on the course. We chatted for a bit, she was running her first half marathon the next day (and she rocked it!)

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I will say the first couple miles of the race were pretty boring. I loved the Disneyland 10k course, so I had high expectations. For those that ran the 5k it was a repeat as we ran through much of the same parts of EPCOT.

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My favorite part of the course was the Boardwalk. It is gentler on my body, and was a nice change of scenery.

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There were a ton of people out cheering along this part of the course, which we so appreciated! Lots of fun signs to read, and people lined up near the Boardwalk in and by the Yacht and Beach Club resorts.  We made it back into EPCOT and towards the finish line again. We were almost there!

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I couldn’t believe I still had two more days of crossing this finish line, it seemed so surreal at that point that I was actually in the middle of this crazy challenge.

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It was just getting to be daylight when we crossed in 1:16:01.

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Everyone kept saying we were “halfway” done, but as far as mileage goes, we weren’t even close to halfway. The early mornings were tough on me though, so I was quite happy to have two of the four 2:45 am wake up calls over with!

As we crossed the finish I ran into some of my buddies!

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Linzie, Kat, and Rebecca

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Newsies!

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Jenn and Danielle

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The boys

It was time to once again head back to shower, eat, and hit the parks. Two of four, done.

QOTD: Do you prefer the 5k or 10k race distance?

Crescent City Classic 10k Race Recap

On Saturday Bobby and I ran the 35th anniversary of the Crescent City Classic in New Orleans. We woke up early to drive from my parents house into the city.

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We weren’t sure how bad the traffic would be with over 20,000 runners so we wanted to get there in plenty of time. We parked at the superdome and headed to Champions Square.

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Having the assembly area in Champions Square was a great idea. We were able to use REAL bathrooms instead of port-o-potties which was a HUGE plus. They had free Community Coffee available as well which was a nice perk. After texting back and forth we were able to meet up with Larisa.

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The race was to start at 8:00, so we headed to our corral. We had to go up the ramp to the Dome and then down the other side onto Poydras.

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We turned the corner on top of the ramp and were greeted with this site:

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Good morning New Orleans! So. many. people. Bobby and I were in separate corrals so we said our goodbyes and headed in opposite directions.

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I ended up being in the very front of my corral behind the rope. Before I knew it, it was time for the National anthem and we were moving up towards the start.

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There were a ton of people on the street ready to run.

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Finally it was time for my corral to go up to the starting line. The sun started to rise above the buildings and it was beginning to get warm.

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The horn went off and we were on our way. The first mile was the most fun because…well…I felt great, and we were running through the French Quarter. The beginning was SO CROWDED and people were already walking because they started in the wrong corral. I know there is only so much the race can do about this, but it was a little frustrating. The road opened up a bit and I had a little more breathing room.

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Café du monde!

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After a bit we turned left onto Esplanade.  Anyone familiar with running in New Orleans knows how bad the roads are here. I almost rolled my ankles several times and my legs were so wobbly and achy. They had water stops at every mile which was nice, but they weren’t long enough and were super crowded so I passed them up at mile one and two. At mile three, I took a gel so I stopped and grabbed a cup of water. By mile four, the heat was starting to get to me. I stopped and got water again.  My face felt very hot and I was tired of starting down at my feet making sure I didn’t roll an ankle. I knew it was just two miles more but it was getting super hot and sunny. I saw two people at different points down on the side of the road with paramedics that had passed out.

There was great entertainment along the way. Several locals were out with water hoses in their front yard, and there were a couple of beer stops people created that were so fun and decorative. A lot of people had on festive costume and I saw a lot of Easter bunnies!

We made it to city park and I knew we were close. I didn’t get any additional water after mile four, I just wanted to keep my momentum and finish.  This part of the route is the same as Rock n Roll New Orleans so I was having flashbacks to the three times I have run that race. I hit mile 6 and knew I was close to getting in under an hour (which was my B goal). I saw the finish line in the distance but it seemed like it took forever to get there! I pushed hard and crossed the finish line at 59 minutes flat. I had a fun race but was happy to be done with the heat. Bobby found me and he ran a PR as well, 50:42 and he even had a hurt back and wasn’t sure he could race. I was so proud of him! We made it into the finish fest and got some Jambalaya and drinks and we grabbed our finishers medals.

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My favorite thing about New Orleans races is they know how to throw a party. I have run races in many states and ours are by far the best as far as post race partying goes. There was a huge stage with a band playing, free Jambalaya, beer, water, and Gatorade as well as red beans and rice. Everyone was having a great time enjoying the sunshine.

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I was having a hard time getting my texts to go through but finally was able to meet up with Liz, and then I saw Mindy! Three fellow Claim Your Journey Ambassadors together!

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We all chatted for a bit and then Bobby and I decided to head home. His back was hurting, and we had enough of the sun and it was starting to get really crowded.

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We had to get in a long line to take a bus back downtown, and finally made it back to the Superdome and our car and headed back to my parents house.

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All was quiet at the dome on the way back to the car.

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We both took glorious naps when we got back, well deserved after we both PRed (my 4th PR in my 4th race distance this year! 5k, 10k, half, and full marathon)

Overall:

I was so happy to see some positive changes to this race since the last time I ran it in 2009. The addition of the corrals were nice although they were a bit hectic. Having real bathrooms and Champions Square was great as well. Loved having a medal, and the post race party was way more organized. There were a couple of minor issues like waiting 25 minutes to get on a bus, and a bottle neck at the finish line. They should have pushed the water tables back at the finish, but again minor details. Overall I loved the race and love that it’s a big New Orleans party. It’s a great tradition and had some fabulous additions this year and I so hope that I can run it again next year. I would greatly encourage you to run this if you are looking for a fun 10k that is in a great tourist destination. If anyone has any questions feel free to e mail me!

QOTD: Where is a city you would want to run a race then stay after for a few days and play tourist?