Race Report: Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego Marathon

HI GUYS!  Well I did it! I completed my third marathon, and I’m just gonna say I had a rough run today.  I think being out of town for a whole week before the race took its toll on my stomach.  At the halfway mark I was on track for a 3:40 marathon, but then my stomach turned to knots around mile 16 and it was all downhill from there.  I was advised not to continue by the course medics around mile 19, but I insisted on finishing.  I came in at a painful 4:09.  Besides my personal experience, here is my report on Rock n Roll San Diego.


Expo:

  • meRock n Roll expos are usually pretty similar and easy to navigate.  So first we got our numbers, then our bags and t-shirts, and then you proceed into the Brooks section of the expo, and then to the rest of the expo.
  • I highly recommend the Brooks expo, its always got something going on, and you get some pretty good deals.  I got some capris that I’ve had my eyes on for a couple months now, and a Rock n Roll San Diego singlet.
  • In addition, since my mom forgot her Garmin, it was decided that I should *obviously* upgrade and get a new one and she can take mine.  So I am now the proud owner of the Garmin 220!  Not a huge upgrade, but every bit as sweet.
  • Pace teams were available to meet as well!  If you haven’t run a marathon with a pace team before, I highly recommend!

Race Day

  • Getting there was slightly inconvenient and here is why: the start and the end were not close at all.  So you had the option of staying close to the end or close to the start.  We chose to stay close to the end, and took the nearby shuttle to the start.

    This one cracks me up, I'm in the pink hat, and my run buddy is in the blue one
    This one cracks me up, I’m in the pink hat, and my run buddy is in the blue one
  • On the shuttle: It costs $5 for this race and it does sell out.  To be sure you have a spot on the shuttle, book ahead of time.
  • The shuttle stopped running fairly early, around 5:30, which was fine for me, the marathon start was at 6:15 so I was planning on being there early.  For the halfers though, they didn’t start til 6:50 so they had some waiting around to do once they got there.
  • The start was wave start, and it didn’t get packed in the corral until the very last minute.
  • We started on time! That can be rare.

The Course:

  • The marathon and half marathon courses were very different.  We didn’t run together at all but 3 or 4 miles.  So this will mostly be on the full course.
  • The first 9-10ish miles were okay as far as crowd support goes.  The rest was on this nice trail around Mission Bay, which was nice but secluded, and highway roads.  So not much people interaction besides the aid stations.  I felt like San Diego is so beautiful, and this course did not do it justice.
  • Aid stations were well stocked and well spaced.  There is a 2.4 mile section up a highway (which is also the hardest section due to a pretty significant hill), that doesn’t have aid stations, but they do have people on bikes to make sure everyone is alright.
  • Some people thought this was a hilly course.  I train in the mountains fortunately, so I didn’t think it was that bad sides the 2.4 mile hill at mile 20.
  • The finish was confusing, because there was an inflated arch at the 26 mile mark.  But we all know this race is 26.2, so the finish is still almost a quarter mile away.  Some people didn’t realize this, and sprinted their hearts out, only to find that they still had to run for a couple more minutes.
  • The half seemed to have a better time, as evidenced by my mother:
  • mom

The Finish

  • medalRock n Roll marathons are usually pretty organized at the finish.  You cross,
    get medaled, get some water, gatorade, chocolate milk, and all sorts of snacks.
    The beer tent was flowing, and O.A.R performed at PetCo Stadium.  Overall a good experience.
  • No space blankets at this race, because its usually pretty warm.
  • You also get a pretty sweet Brooks finisher jacket if you did the marathon!  My mom was jealous she didn’t get one!

me2

Overall this was a good race.  It was well put together, the shirts and jackets were cool, and the volunteers were excellent.  I do wish the course was better!  This race definitely did not give runners the taste of San Diego they came here for.

If you plan on running this race next year, and have any unanswered questions, please post below!

Happy recovering!

-Juliane,  ACSM CEP

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