Eileen and i carpooled into DC on Friday morning and used Parking Panda to park about a mile from the hotel. I cannot rave enough about Parking Panda, and there was a Groupon as well. Parking at our hotel was $50 a day and would have been $150 for the weekend. Parking Panda was $68, and after the groupon it was $48. Win win win.
We dropped our bags at the hotel, and went over to the expo.
Our first stop after getting our bib and tee was the Brooks Happy Island. They were doing free gait analysis and giving away free insulated totes. I got my gait analyzed, found out I'm wearing the right shoes, and happy skipped over to the booth where they had more giveaways! I had a choice between key covers or a visor. I regret not choosing the visor.
I bought some shoes, got my free bag, and we met up with Gigi and her friend Paul.
We got the expo and donated a little blood for research...
Afterwards, we had some lunch and checked into the hotel. Because we had such a late lunch, we decided to have a light dinner. Off to Chinatown.
We went back to the hotel so we could all walk to the start together.
Eileen and I stopped at mile 2 so I could pee and it took almost 12 minutes! Ugh!
We saw Paul when we passed him at mile 4 but we never saw Gigi until we finished!
We did stop for this photo...
This was right after Capitol Hill and the blue mile. I cried through the whole thing, and am so thankful to the families who stood there in the rain, holding American flags, slapping us five, and encouraging us. I'm teary eyed now, just writing about it.
That hill killed my foot. It was pretty much over for me after that. I gimped through the entire second half.
We couldn't resist stopping here!
At around mile 9.5, Eileen went on ahead. I was really lagging, and totally holding her back. She probably ran an extra three miles doubling back to cheer me on during the course of the race. Darn foot!
At around mile 11, they were handing out Thin Mints. Seriously. How cool is that? I love people. The woman actually ran up and down that stretch and handed them out. Some grumpy dude actually snarled at her, and a trio on my left was whining. It was toxic, and completely understandable, the rain was miserable.
At mile 12.5 a girl next to me was panicking about finishing. She was just done. I had run the race before, and knew we were close, and sure enough, minutes later we could see the finish area. She was so happy!
It was not my worst finish ever, but very close. It took just over 3:24 to finish and i was a mess. I got my medal and food, inhaled a chocolate milk and went to find my friends.
We visited some museums that nigt and the next day, and saw a parade, but more about that later.
I must say, I have no complaints about the race at all. The water stops were great, amazing volunteers, well marked, smooth finish area. The expo was big and covered all the bases.
That darn rain.