A race that has been on my bucket list for a while now is Rock ‘N’ Roll San Francisco. Fortunately, as a member of the RockNBlog team, I’m able to run all the races! (Ok, maybe not all, but as many as I can manage.)
The day before the big day, I headed down to San Fran to check out the expo, pick up my bib, and most importantly, meet up with my We Run Social / PRO Compression crew. The drive to San Fran normally takes about 2.5 hours. On this drive, however, the journey took about 3.5 hours with all of the traffic that was going into the “City by the Bay”! Fortunately, I still made it in time for a We Run Social / PRO Compression pic.
After walking around the expo not once, not twice, but THREE times, I figured it was time to go check out Pier 39 then head to my hotel. While checking out Pier 39, I of course took some more pics!
The rest of my evening was pretty low-key. I grabbed some dinner, checked into my hotel, laid out my flat runner, and then went to bed.
My alarm was set for 3:30am on Sunday morning, but I didn’t hear it. I woke up at 4:09am and was able to get out the door by 4:35am (shower included)! #win Fortunately, I was able to park and make it to meet up with the PRO Compression / We Run Social crew by 5:25am!
I pre-purchased a parking pass for $30 and was glad I did! Parking at the Pier 39 garage was convenient and there was no rush to get back to my car since the parking pass was good for all day! If you’re running Rock ‘N’ Roll San Francisco, I highly recommend purchasing a parking pass.
After getting a picture with the PRO Compression / We Run Social crew, I met up with the Bib Rave Pro gals. We too got a picture!
Shortly after this picture was taken, it was time to drop off my gear check bag and head to the starting corral with Ashley This was my first half marathon in which I walked the entire 13.1 miles. Fortunately, I had Ashley to keep me company for the whole half marathon journey.
Before we knew it, the 6:15am start time arrived and we were off! Within the first mile we came to our first hill on Bay Street. For non-San Franciscans such as myself, a 150 ft. climb is a big deal! Fortunately, we made it up the hills and lived to talk about them. 😉
Some other highlights within the first few miles included getting to fist bump from Elvis and running through the “wear blue: run to remember” section. Members of the wear blue organization lined the half-marathon course with families of the fallen, active duty military, and veteran service members holding American flags as a living memorial to our fallen military. Pictures of men and women who have died in service were also stationed along the course to encourage and remind runners of their sacrifice. It was truly inspirational!
Shortly after the “wear blue” section, it was time for the Golden Gate Bridge… my favorite part! If you haven’t seen from previous posts, running over bridges is my favorite thing to do!
Not only did we get to run one way across the Golden Gate Bridge, but then we got to turn around via a cool dirt trail, cross UNDER the bridge, and then go back across the bridge for a second time! It was awesome!
By this point, we were at about mile 9 and almost done with the race. I just could not get over how absolutely gorgeous it was! The sun was out, the weather was nice and cool, and the views of the bay were breathtaking!
One of the many highlights of the Rock ‘N’ Roll series events is the music. There are headliner bands that play at the finish line as well as live, local bands throughout the course. The bands help to give myself and other runners the little boost we need to get us to the finish line!
The final few miles went by fairly quickly (relatively speaking). Towards the end I was getting pretty hungry and was ready to sit, put my feet up, and eat some delicious San Francisco food. Yum! A highlight in the final miles was seeing a penguin at one of the water stations. 🙂
And just like that, Ashley and I rounded the final corner on to Beach Street and spotted the finish line. We made it! We crossed, hugged, grabbed our medals, and made our way to the ice cold chocolate milk and pretzels.
Four hours was our time goal and we did it! “Running” Rock ‘N’ Roll San Francisco would not have been as enjoyable had it not been for Ashley. Hmmm… I wonder if there’ll be more Rock ‘N’ Roll races coming up in our near future? 😉
After discussing trying to find a brunch spot, we instead decided to head our separate ways to do our own thing since we were parked in two different directions. I changed into my dry clothes I had packed in my drop bag (highly recommend doing this since normally your core body temperature drops after completing a race), grabbed a donut, checked out more of Pier 39, and then walked back to Ghirardelli Square to enjoy a sundae!
The sundae was delicious, but I could not eat the whole thing… it was so rich and so sweet! Often times, I am hungry while out on the course, but once I finish, it takes me a while to gain an appetite again. Does this happen to you?
Finally, I realized it was time to head back home. I still had a 2.5+ hour drive, had to swing by my classroom to grab a few things, and then pack my bags for a week-long outdoor educational school with my 5th grade students that I was leaving for the next day! As I got to my car, however, I thought, “I really want a cool picture with my medal and the Golden Gate Bridge in the background.” So, I drove to the Golden Gate Bridge Welcome Center for a pic.
When it was all said and done, I ended the day with a total of 43,549 steps which works out to be 20.60 miles! Needless to say, I was extremely tired and happy. Will I go back to San Fran to do Rock ‘N’ Roll San Francisco again? Yes, absolutely!
Finally, if this race recap has made you want to sign up for this race or another Rock ‘N’ Roll race, use code “RNRBRP2018” to save $15 on most RnR marathons and half marathons!
Until next time,
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