After dropping our bags, we walked to the mall for a quick bite to eat at the food court before we headed to the Health & Fitness Expo. I love how easy it is to get from Providence Place Mall to the Convention Center via the skywalk and avoid the wet weather. We spent about an hour checking in, picking up our race shirts and swag bags, and then wandering around to the vendors.
As usual, the swag for this race was pretty nice. We received a race shirt and swag bag (to be used at gear check) filled with lots of goodies. By the time we left the expo, I felt like a trick-or-treater. By the way, thank you Sweaty Bands for being there!
Right before we left I was able to meet up with some friends from FitFluential. It was great to see Janine, Sam, and Dani.
We had some fun at the Rock 'n Roll Experience Booth!
For dinner we walked to Providence's art and entertainment district for dinner at Sakis. This cute little grilled pizzeria bar is located across from Johnson & Wales University and was the perfect place for a cozy pre-race dinner of calzones.
The weather cooperated for WaterFire so after dinner we moseyed to WaterPark Place Basin and grabbed a seat for the lighting ceremony.
It was a beautiful evening for sitting by the water, listening to the music, and enjoying the bonfires.
Race Day: We started with a quick ritual breakfast of PB&J toast and then walked to the race. After leaving our bags at the gear check we made one last stop at the port-a-potties where lines were long and slow as they usually are at races. It seemed like there were fewer port-a-potties than last year though. We made it to our corral just prior to our wave start.
Start - Mile 3: With a plan to go slow and walk every two, we eased into these first miles climbing gradually through the charming historic streets of Providence. The bands were on display before we reached mile 1 setting the tone for a lively run. We were feeling so good we completely missed our mile 2 walk.
Miles 4 - 7: Once we made it up the steepest hill of the race, the course flattened out nicely and we were greeted with tree lined streets and vocal spectators. We passed the relay exchange around mile 5.1 which looked to be a smooth transition area. Mile 7 ended with a very steep downhill straight to the water.
Miles 8 - 9: This part of the course was visually bordered by the Seekonk River, Blackstone Park, and Providence's East Side neighborhoods. The live entertainment continued as we easily made our way back toward downtown. At one point we ran underneath an incredibly large inflated Brooks rocker.
Miles 10 - 13.1: The longest mile 10 ever had us enter the city for a pair of double-backs that truly tested the mental endurance. Perfectly positioned cheerleader teams revved up the energy level and spirited our tiring legs. The uphill finish was the final test of our physical endurance.
At the finish line we were handed our finisher's medals, photographed, and loaded down with lots of refueling goodies.
After reclaiming our bags from gear check, we found a spot on the lawn to stretch, rehydrate with some low fat chocolate milk, and relax while they handed out awards to the speedy people.
Under beautiful blue skies we loosened up our leg muscles with a stroll over to the stage to enjoy some of the post race concert by American pop-duo Karmin before walking back to the hotel.
Last year my husband and I trained for and ran the entire Inaugural Rock 'n Roll Providence Half Marathon together, from start to finish. This year his training was inconsistent because of his work schedule, so I was his pacer. His longest run before the race was only 8 miles! Despite his low mileage leading up to race day, my husband totally rocked his half marathon.
Who inspires you?