Mississauga Chiropractor Presents: New Orleans Rock & Roll Marathon – 2013

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Categories: Running

Here’s another blog from a Mississauga chiropractor…

On Sunday Feb 24th, 2013, I participated in the New Orleans Rock & Roll Marathon.  This was my second Rock & Roll Marathon to date, so I was excited to tackle this flat New   Orleans course.  We arrived in New Orleans the Saturday before and headed straight to the Health & Fitness Expo which was being held at the New Orleans Morial Convention Centre, just north of the Mississippi River.

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We found some parking and entered the Convention Centre and made our way to Hall A & B, where the Race Expo was taking place.  On our way we saw the ACE Hardware convention and a Cheerleading Competition also taking place in adjoining Halls.  We also decided to grab a bite to eat before getting the Race Expo.  We found a food court and tried some popular New   Orleans dishes.  I had a Muffuletta (deli sandwich) & a Catfish Po-boy (another sandwich), Maria had the Shrimp Po-Boy.

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Once I got my race bib and tech-shirt, we went straight to the official marathon merchandise section.  For my past 4 marathons (Boston, Chicago, Nashville, Columbus), I have made it a tradition of picking up an official marathon jacket.  Luckily for me, I found the last one that was in-stock.  It was a large however, but I also got a marathon hoodie to wear inside, so the fit was good.  Maria found some nice New Orleans running shirts as well.

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I was also able to pick-up another pairs of racing shoes.  Again, another tradition of mine is buying my shoes at the Expo discounted price.  This year’s model of my Brooks ST-Racers was a nice yellow.  A change from last year’s red and the bright orange & blue from 2011.

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After the Race Expo, we made our way to our Hotel, The Crown Plaza on Canal & Bourbon Street to check-in.  We then roamed around the French Quarters (New   Orleans’ oldest district), before settling in for dinner at a local Italian Restaurant.  I of course had my spaghetti & meatballs, my traditional pasta meal before a big marathon.

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On Marathon day we were expecting 16,000 runners all running either the Full Marathon or Half Marathon.  We walked over to Lafayette   Square at Poydras Street & Camp Street, where the start of the race would begin.

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In the starting Corrals, it was announced that US running greats Kara Goucher & Shalane Flannigan would be participating in the half marathon.  Evidently, Kara would finish 5th overall, while Shalane would finish 2nd overall.

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Personally, I was very excited about this marathon.  My goal was to run under 3 hours and 10 minutes.  My personal best was 3:09:17 at the Detroit Marathon in 2010.  I felt pretty confident because I had dropped from 172 lbs to 139 lbs in the past 3 months and I was running over 100 km a week pretty consistently for the past 2 months.

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I started out in Coral B because I had indicated in my sign-up that I wanted to run a 3:30 marathon, so for the entire first half of the race, I was passing a lot of runners with ease.

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Each of my splits for the opening 35 km ranged from 4:05-4:12 mins/km.  I was actually on pace to hit 2:58:00 until about 5 km to go, when I hit the infamous ‘runner’s wall’.  I started to slow down dramatically, but I tried not to panic.  As longs as I didn’t cramp up or start to walk, I would still hit my goal of running under 3:10:00.  As I approached CityPark which was the home of the Finish Line, I was able to crank my speed back up again, and I finished strong with a personal best time of 3:03:58.  I finished 50th out of 2629 marathon runners.

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My next marathon is scheduled for June 22nd, 2013 in Seattle, Washington.  This will be my 3rd Rock & Roll Marathon event.  It is supposed to be a very hilly course, so my training should start pretty soon.  No rest for the wicked!  Happy Running!

 

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