Rock n Roll Raleigh (now with llamas!)

Hi friends!

We had a fantastic race yesterday where we both PR’d! Which is a slightly bigger deal for me than Steve since this was his first so any finishing time is going to be your best finishing time.

I have always enjoyed reading race recaps from other people so here is my shot at a race recap 😀

We woke up at 4:30am (OMG) because the streets started closing at 5:30am and we needed to get to the parking decks. Yes this early morning wake up is as awful as it sounds. No they don’t get easier with more races.

The race didn’t start until 7:00 am so we had an hour and a half to chill and freeze in the wind. We hopped into a nearby hotel lobby with a bunch of other runners. This was glorious because hotel lobby = toilets that flush! And we were able to wake up a bit before it was time to get corralled!



There were almost 6000 runners doing the Rock n Roll Raleigh Half Marathon this year so they did a wave start to help prevent congestion at the start (thank god!!). I was in corral 4, so I wished Steve good luck and left him to find corral 13.

And then we were off!

Crazy right?!?

I was shooting for 1:50 (8:20 min/mile) so I hung out with the pace group for a while. I also hung out with them because we had the same shoes on and therefore they were cool peeps ya know. The course was mostly downtown Raleigh which has some small rolling hills. Here’s an overview of the course with the elevation profile below it.



RocknRoll Raleigh


The first downhill part was AWESOME. Was nice and relaxed and didn’t have my music on and had a great time! Then around mile 6 we started going uphill. FOR. 3. MILES. It wasn’t all steep. But it was all uphill. This was where I lost the pace group. Which really only happened because I walked through the aid station at 7.2 miles and grabbed a GU (the only fuel I took for the entire race). It was also where I decided that a little extra motivation was needed and I started up the iPod which was a miracle-worker for my morale!

I got my legs back around mile 10 and then promptly lost them on that last steep hill you see at the end of the elevation profile. Ugh. I walked a bit. Not gonna lie.

The finish was right around the corner though! So I picked up the pace for the last 1.5 miles and had some sub-8 min miles there at the end and finished strong at my new PR of 1:50:12!!!

Steve was still on the course so I speed walked through the finisher’s area and grabbed everything that was handed towards me (water, Gatorade, chocolate milk, pretzels, a sandwich, a banana, and a protein bar) and made a beeline for the gear check so I could grab my phone and try to get pictures of Steve.

I think I was a little out of it at this part because I saw a llama chillin on main street! I was like….OMG is that a white llama?!? Why would someone bring a llama to a race?!? Who has a llama in Raleigh?!?….wait…..that’s not a llama….that’s a dog. WTF Amanda…..

Anywho. I was able to catch Steve on his home stretch and ran with him for a bit before I realized that that was stupid cause I just finished a half-marathon and was tired and my feet hurt.


See him in the orange!! Note: we both wore orange for this race. It was embarrassing.

On my way to catch him at the finish line, I hobbled walked past a new patisserie and stopped in to grab some celebratory macarons! (They were incredible and dreamy) If you are ever in the Raleigh area, check out Lucettegrace for some seriously delicious treats.


I’ll let Steve tell you about the race, but we both had a blast!

Race pros:

  • Plenty of aid stations. I actually skipped 2 (which I rarely ever do).
  • Awesome spectators!
  • Great and challenging course
  • Very organized
  • Weather was perfect for running (slightly cool and breezy)

Race cons:

  • So many hills
  • The finisher area was pretty spread out (I had to walk a while to get to the med tent/gear bag area and to the beer garden)
  • Streets closed suuuuuper early

See ya later!

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