- 3 miles/5K, 5 miles/8K, 13.1 miles/Half Marathon, 26.2 miles/Marathon
- Road Race
- Event Website
Packet Pick up- The packet pickup area was well organized. I liked that the volunteers directed you which section of the room to go to first and made sure you weren’t waiting in line for what you thought was a packet only to need to turn around and stand in a different line. Each group of bib numbers was broken into smaller lines which helped to keep the size of lines down. Altogether, it took less than 10 minutes to get through the whole thing, including signing my waiver, which I could have done at home.
Expo- I try to get to expos early in the morning, which helps with the crowds. By noon, a few thousand people were milling around the expo hall, which made it was hard to get to most of the samples. This is fine, I try to bring all my race day needs from home, but a free coconut water would have been nice. There were tons of areas for photo ops. The part I loved was seeing all the different medals from the other Rock ‘n’ Roll races, plus all the heavy medals you can earn depending on the number of Rock 'n' Roll races you run in a year. Make sure to go to the expo early, especially if large crowds stress you out.
Transportation- Since I got to the expo late, I missed out on getting a ticket for the shuttle that brought runners directly the start line. This miscalculation caused a bit of stress because I was staying about 2.5 miles away. A 5 a.m. Lyft ride turned out to be the answer. Based on what I saw when arriving, the buses brought people directly to the start line, which eliminated the uphill hike many runners had right before a race.
The start line- This is small, but was my favorite part. There were over 20 corrals, which is great because it means you don’t get push along too quickly. Every runner had a corral number assigned to them on their bibs, but these numbers were ignored as the start grew closer and runners arrived last minute. Since each corral started in 3-4 minute increments, I was able to start my run at the right pace without being pushed forward in a crowd. I loved this!
The course- I loved the half marathon course. Both the half and full marathoners ran together until about Mile 8. The course was filled with spectators (including a house at Mile 4 house giving out shots of tequila). The spectators were loud and tons of fun. I don’t think I remember too many stretches where there weren’t people cheering. The last three miles of the half marathon course was mostly downhill, which is great after 10 miles. There were a few hills but nothing that stood out as being significantly steep. I found myself pausing my Spotify playlist when arriving at each musician to hear the different styles of music being played.
Course Aid- It was a hot day, so I was keeping an eye out for every water stop I could get. They were well spaced out and well stocked. I was a huge fan of them making sure that we knew which one had water and which had Gatorade. Very helpful in case you have not trained with a specific drink.
Finish Line- That downhill finish made for a strong push at the end. You can hear people cheering for you on, and it made the last third of a mile fly by! I felt like a rock star (pun intended). They move you through the finish line area, allowing you to get your medal, Gatorade, and chocolate milk (yum). Surprisingly, at a race with 30,000 runners, it was easy to find my husband after the race.
Swag- The medal was very cute. I loved the small sparkle in the wave and the guitar pick shape. I only wish the half and full marathon were different sizes. I know when I ran my first marathon I loved that my medal was different than the 5K and half marathon. The standard race t-shirt was simple and what you would expect. There was a massive selection of finisher shirts available at the post-race party, which were pretty affordable.
Overall- This race was a ton of fun and out of my typical environment. I can see why people love the Rock ‘n’ Roll race series so much. They are well organized and offer excellent crowd support. If you are a music fan, love big races, and the sun, you should check this one out!