Saturday, March 2, 2013

Pre-Marathon Events

We made the 9 hour drive to Arkansas and arrived in Little Rock on Friday afternoon. After a stop for lunch, we went straight to the race expo at the Statehouse Convention Center. I love a good expo (especially sans kids when I have the freedom to shop and talk), and Little Rock did not disappoint. We spent a good couple hours there wandering booths and talking with vendors.

The theme for this year's Little Rock Marathon is "Lucky," playing off the 3-3-13 date, tying in the lucky horseshoe and thus a western vibe. The expo had neat displays to promote the theme, as well as a fabulous assortment of race clothing.

Even the race bib looks like a western bandana...

As a marketing person myself, I love it when events go the extra mile with all the little details. Kudos to the Little Rock CIC (Chicks in Charge).

While we wandered around the expo, I found the KT Tape guys at the Fleet Feet booth. After discussing my injury, they offered to tape up my ankle for the race. I'm not 100%, but still have great hopes of making it the full 26.2. Cross your fingers for me please!

After the expo, we started to drive the course. Some of the streets were one-ways and city traffic made it tiresome and long. By mile 13, we gave up and headed back to the hotel. I was tired and needed a mental rest before dinner. Back at the hotel, I bumped into Penny aka Pink Hat Runner. I've gotten to know her through blogging, so it was great to finally meet her in person.

Friday evening, we strolled Little Rock's downtown area called the River Market, grabbed dinner at the Flying Fish, and scouted out the starting line. Cool signs at the start... Again, I love the creativity of this event.

This morning, we were up early for the kickoff of marathon weekend. (There are FIVE different events here... Saturday: 5K, Kids Race;  Sunday: 10K, Half and Full Marathon.)  My hubby was running in the 5K. It was pretty darn chilly (and windy) in Little Rock this morning, so we huddled in the lobby of a nearby hotel until the start.

It felt weird to be at a race and not be a runner. But every time I take the role of cheerleader, I get to experience the race in a whole new way. It was fun to watch the lead runners blaze past just as it was to see the fun costumes and outfits on runners. I was touched today by the people in the race, their comraderie, and their families on the sidelines.  As a runner myself, I could see so much expression and feeling in their faces as they came down the finishing stretch. It made me really proud to be a part of the runner community... and equally excited for the marathon on Sunday.

My hubby finished his 5K... his first run since last November. Kiddingly, he prides himself on the Couch-to-5K plan - directly from the couch to the race course, with nothing in-between. He liked today's race and felt invigorated - even mentioned that perhaps he should "start running again". Umm, yeah.

I also ran into Endorphin Dude...

The forecast for Sunday's Little Rock Marathon is cooler than I expected, but I packed well. Not sure why, but I have felt freezing ever since we got here. Starting time temp will be low 30's, but by time I finish, it will be near 50 degrees. Thankfully, I'll have my hubby on the course to throw clothing at!

I'll be in this green shirt... so if you see me, please come say HELLO!

My goal for this race is the same as always... run a strong training run. Don't push it. This is simply a warm up for Eugene, not intended to break any time goals. That being said, it's hard as a runner to not put some kind of "goal" on a marathon. I hope to finish between 4:30-4:45, but it will all depend on how the ankle holds up.

I just want to finish - healthy.
And bring home that giant BLING that Little Rock is so well known for!

Now it's time for some carbs in the form of pizza! MMMM!


  1. You're going to be fabulous! And I think you should have lots of pizza. Yum!

  2. Best of luck tomorrow - thinking positive vibes for your foot to behave!

  3. It was great "running" into you this morning. :-)

    I saw the marathon medal at the expo and holy cow it is HUGE!!

    Good luck tomorrow.

  4. You'll do great tomorrow as you always do. Cheering you on from Colorado!

  5. Good luck tomorrow!!! I can;t believe it's been 1 year when I was there, time just flies!

  6. Have a great run! Don't push it!

  7. You're gonna be great!! Have fun through the journey....:)

  8. Good luck tomorrow! I'm looking forward to reading all about it!

  9. Good luck today Jess! I can't wait to hear all about it!!

  10. Good Luck! KT tape pro has got me through 6 months of running with an injury (my bad). Good luck!!

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  12. I am so excited to read your race report. I've been following you on FB for a while (love all your inspirational pictures!!) but I'm not sure if I've ever left a blog comment before. I'm the runner that met you coming out of the ladies room in the Marriott before the race. As soon as I saw you it felt like I was seeing a celebrity! :-)

  13. Hope the race was fun and you didn't come out of it less healthy than you went in!! Can't wait for the recap!

  14. Charlotte CorriherMarch 5, 2013 at 2:59 PM

    Hi Jess ! So nice to meet you Sun night after the race. Looking at your schedule I don't think I'll see you again until the CT/RI weekend...but atleast I'll get to follow you through here !
    Charlotte (The Birthday Cake Lady)

  15. I love Endorphin Dude! Looks like fun & I see that you finished. Looking forward to the recap.

  16. Best wishes for a great race. I love the shirt even more now. You don't happen to have other colors?? I can't wait to hear all about it.


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