Rock-N-Roll Portland Half Marathon Re-cap

On Sunday I ran the Rock-N-Roll Portland Half Marathon!

The weather on race day was perfect:  dry, cool and cloudy.  The course was a nice change of pace as quite a bit of it took place on the East side, an area I haven’t done much running, but there were hills (yuck).  Overall the race was extremely well organized with amazing volunteers and the fans that came out to cheer on the runners were incredible.  My  months of training paid off and I finished VERY close to my goal time and have been recovering well (I’m not too sore). I’m already looking forward to signing up for my next Half!  Here’s my top 3 from race day:

1. I’m happy I finished my second Half Marathon!  I can mark this 2013 goal off my list…  My time was 2 hours and 36 minutes.  I had hoped to finish in 2 hours and 30 minutes, but those hills really slowed me down (after a few, I was walking up all the hills!) and considering I hadn’t done much hill training during my long training runs, I feel like I did OK.  Lesson learned:  Include more hill runs into my next round of training.


2. I felt great for most of the race.  Here I am at the start line, nervous, but excited to run:


At mile 4, I felt awesome!  My play list was rocking and my pace was a little faster then usual, despite my efforts to go slow:


At mile 8 over on the East side, I still felt good:


Around mile 10, things started to go south….  the gels I had taken (without any issues during training) were upsetting my stomach, and after stopping at every aid station for water/Gatorade, my stomach was too full of liquid and I could feel it sloshing around.  As I passed the mile marker for 11, I had to stop and walk because I was worried about tossing my cookies – urgh.  I walked for a while and still felt pretty gross, but everyone around me was so excited to be so close to the finish it seemed to help give me a second wind.  After crossing the Steel Bridge, I was in the home stretch and managed a slow jog to the finish line.  Lesson learned:  If it’s not 90 degrees out, I probably don’t need to stop for water at every aid station! Especially if I didn’t need to stop that often for water during my training runs.

3. Thank you to Matt for all his support – before, during, and after the race.  All the photos from race day were courtesy of Matt as he ran around the city trying to find me along the route.  He also dug out the t-shirt he designed and wore to my fist Half in Chicago:


Now I am hooked!  I’ve been “shopping” for my next Half Marathon – here are the ones making the final cut:

I don’t think I can do all 4, but maybe I can do 2 of them – one in summer and one in the fall.  We’ll see….   But before I run my next Half, I’ll be mixing things up with my fitness routine as I have signed up for an Outdoor Boot Camp in June.  I didn’t too much, if any strength training over the past few months, so I’m hoping by adding this into the mix, it might help me finish stronger at my next race.  More info to come on my Boot Camp experience.

To all the runners out there:  How long should I wait until I run my next Half?



11 thoughts on “Rock-N-Roll Portland Half Marathon Re-cap

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  4. Congratulations on finisihing the Rock & Roll Half. I ran it last year and loved the change of pace running on the east side. If you want some quality hill training that you can do even when its hot outside (even though hot isn’t usually in our forecast) you should do some trail running in Forest Park. It’s great for hill training.

    acamas is a great half marathon, nice scenary and this year they’ve changed it so you are not cursed with the steepest most ridiculous hill at the very end of a race every invented (seriously its worse than Terwilliger!) — there is one major hill at the beginning of the new course, but that’s pretty much it, with the exception of some rolling hills that are not steep.

    I’ve run the Eugene Women’s as well and that’s fun just because its all women and of coruse Eugene is beautiful too.

    There are some half marathons happening around the 4th of July, the one on Sauvies Island is incredibly flat, and then there is Stars & Stripes in Beaverton and another I think its the Freedom Half that runs in Gresham and Summerlake Half is in Tigard.

    Whatever you choose I hope you enjoy it!! Keep running! Stay happy!! 🙂


    • Thanks for the suggestions! Hill running is such a new concept for me having moved out here from Chicago where every race course is “fast and flat!” Some trail running sounds like fun – I have been meaning to try running around at Mt. Tabor Park (usually I just walk with my dogs).

      I really am torn about the next Half… I might wait a few weeks and see how I’m feeling and if Lacamas Lake in July seems feasible. I found the Sauvie Island race and that sounded so cool, but I think I’m going to Bend for the 4th and will do the Spark Your Heart 5k there. I’m actually really looking forward to a shorter race for a bit of a change!


  5. Do the next one whenever you feel comfortable. I just started running and love the thrill and excitement of getting a good pump in our body. My goal this year is to do one 5k or possible a 10k. Seeing you complete your marathon is really inspiring and helps motivate me to keep pushing. Best of luck withe everything and don’t stop running 🙂


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