Run. All. The. Races.
Last week I headed back to Savannah for the Rock n Roll race weekend once again. My crazy friends talked me into signing up for not 1, not 2, but THREE races in one weekend. If it weren’t for those extra shiny medals and hanging out with my awesome friends, I probably wouldn’t have been talked into this again this year. I’ve mentioned that running and I aren’t getting along well right now, and when you add 10 days in Portugal, a crappy race, and a nasty cold to the mix, it makes me even LESS motivated to get out there. But I did it anyway.
The first race of the weekend was the Half Marathon. Savannah is one of the only Rock N Roll race locations where the half and full marathons are on Saturday and then the shorter distances are in the afternoon on Sunday. Because of this schedule the expo is on Thursday and Friday, with Friday being a super busy day since that is when most people from out of town arrive.
I spent Thursday night in St Augustine with my running travel bestie Jenn and we headed towards Savannah on Friday morning. Already being halfway to Savannah when I woke up Friday morning meant that we were able to get on the road a little earlier than last year (when I had to drive from Orlando first).
After a quick run through the expo (and a few logistical problems), we met up with our friend Amy. She was supposed to run with us but due to a broken leg she was just along for the ride. We caught up over beer and snacks at Moonriver Brewing, then had dinner with some friends at Treylor Park. It was a early night for all of us since it was going to be an early morning for the race. VIP parking is great, but it also means being parked an hour and a half before the race start.
Once we were parked on race day we spent our remaining time in the VIP area at the Hyatt Hotel which was right by the start line. We were able to grab a bite to eat, catch up with our running buddies, and use the bathroom (VIP has their own bathrooms with short lines), before walking out the front door and to the start. It was forecasted to be super hot that day so Rock N Roll moved up the race start a little bit.
Our Savannah races (this one and the Publix Savannah Womens Half) have become the “Savannah Stroll” for a few of us. We aren’t worried about getting a PR, we just want to have fun and finish the race. This year was no different. We added a new friend to our group and made the most of the day. All in all this race went SO MUCH better than Lisbon and I was so happy about that.
Around mile 10 we could really feel the heat and I was glad that we only had 3.1 miles to go. Even better, it meant we were only 1 mile away from “Mile 11 Beer.” On the course you pass through this wonderful neighborhood that comes out in full force AND hands out beer to runners. This year they even had a photo station set up with a giant inflatable dragon. It was just what you needed to get through the last 2 miles of the race.
We crossed the finish line and headed straight to the VIP tent where beer, mimosas, and lunch were waiting for us. I’ve done VIP the last 2 years in Savannah and its been great. It is so nice to have somewhere to sit after the race to eat and drink, plus they even have their own changing areas and bathrooms. Since we had brunch reservations around noon it was nice to be able to clean up a little bit and change shirts before heading it. It also gave us another chance to catch up with our friends that we might not see again for awhile. So is VIP worth it? Absolutely!
Half marathon #18 wasn’t my fastest half marathon or my best race, but it was definitely the most FUN race I’ve done this year. I love being able to spend time with my running friends in one of my favorites cities in the US.
*Disclosure: As a Rock N Blog ambassador I am provided free entry to Rock N Roll races. As always, all thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.