Monday, November 1, 2010

New Orleans Jazz Half Marathon Recap-Part 1 of 2

I’m going to write two entries on the Jazz Half Marathon!  I have too many pictures for just one post so stay tuned for Part 2!

The day before the race, I tried to stay off of my feet as much as possible…well, as much as a Nurse can stay off of their feet at work!  I think I did pretty good though considering we got off of work at noon on Friday!  We had fun on Friday at work because we were all able to dress up in costume!  Yay!  I love fun days at work! :0)

After work, I came and ate an Almond Butter and Jelly sandwich on wheat bread with Baked Cheetos.  I also tried to take a nap.  That didn’t work out very well so I watched “The Backup Plan” instead!  I had just received it on Friday so that worked out well! 

I had a few errands to run so I dragged myself out of the house (which was really hard to do) and went to Wal-Mart, the Bank, AND I had my oil changed and my car inspected all in an hour and 15 minutes!  Woohoo!  I got back home and picked up around the house, washed clothes, finished packing, etc. I didn’t want to leave myself a lot to do on Sunday when we got back cause I knew I would be sore, which I was (smart idea, Karen!)! 

While waiting on my brother and sister in law to arrive, I had some Greek Yogurt and a Peanut Butter/Banana smoothie!  Yummy!  My sister in law lives in another town and teaches Kindergarten. I knew we would get on the road late…and I was right!  We left my house around 6 p.m.  The original plan was to stop in Baton Rouge and eat.  Well, at that time, it would put us eating at 8 p.m. and I didn’t want to eat that late so we thought we could stop in Lafayette for dinner.  Then I realized, 7 p.m., Lafayette, Friday night?!  Bad idea!  So what did we do?  We loaded the car and drove down the road to a little hometown restaurant.  After reviewing the menu, Kayla and I decided we felt more comfortable eating at Subway!  So we left and went to Subway!


I had a Subway Melt on Pita Bread with Baked Doritos and a water. I was still full from my afternoon snack earlier but oh well!  Jason stopped by after he got off of work to see us off and we were on our way!  My husband couldn’t come this weekend with us cause he had to work. Bummer.

We made it to the Atchafalaya Basin bridge when Kayla decided she had to take a “potty” break.


This is her “I need to potty” dance! :0)

Luckily, they had a welcome center about midway through the very loooonnnnng bridge that we could stop at.

The rest of the trip was very uneventful!  I took a mini nap in the backseat and woke up just as we were getting into NOLA!  It was about 9:30 p.m., and we saw this on the side of the interstate!


Oh my!  It was a CAR on fire!!  The fire trucks hadn’t arrived yet!  So scary! I hope everyone made it out of the car alive!  The entire thing was engulfed in flames!


We pulled into our hotel at 10 p.m. There were people EVERYWHERE!!!!  Apparently Voodoo fest was going on that weekend and the streets were full of people dressed in costumes. It was insane. I joked that I was gonna put my stuff in the room and join them for an all-nighter. Yeah right. Me?! An all-nighter? Seriously NEVER!

We got into our room and it was late and we were tired but we had enough energy to dig through our race packets!  Hah!


The Jazz Half offered concierge packet pickup if you stayed at one of their race hotels.  It was nice and convenient for us, but not so nice and convenient for out of towners who weren’t staying at a host hotel.  They didn’t offer race day pickup which wasn’t cool at all!


Our hotel was nice. My only complaint about the hotel was the parking. Or should I say lack of parking?!  We were told at check in that there was no self-free parking. Ok fine. I’m ok with paying for parking…so now what?  The lady at the desk told us that they had a parking garage with VALET parking for $30.  Great no problem.  We checked in and got back to our car to see what to do, and there were NO “valet” parkers to be seen.  Okkkk…

We followed the guy in front of us into the parking garage and when I say that this place was small, I mean it was TINY!  No way it had enough room to hold all of the hotel’s guests!!!!  We could not find a parking spot anywhere.  I was just a second away from getting out of the car and asking them to refund my $30 cause their parking garage was junk.  My brother somehow managed to get around the exit and squeeze the SUV into this mini-tiny-micro parking spot.  So much for “VALET” parking. That I paid $30 for. In the tiniest parking garage ever.  Whatever.


Back to the room.  My brother…….that’s my brother, by the way…….was mad at us cause we were looking through our race packets instead of going to sleep. I kept calling him “Grumpy pants” and “Mr. Grumpy gills”.  He wasn’t amused but I thought it was pretty funny! :0)


My race gear all set up, ready to go!  I had a great nights sleep although I had trouble actually falling asleep. Once I did, though…I slept great!


Fast forward to race morning!  Here’s Kayla and I in our “costumes”.  We were two players from the All American Girls Professional Baseball League.  The team I chose to be was the Rockford Peaches!  These ladies are best known for their movie from the 90’s called A League of Their Own.  This also happens to be my FAVORITE movie, by the way!

How did these costumes come to play, you might ask?  Well, I have been toying with the idea for a while of being a Rockford Peach for Halloween this year. I even researched costumes, looked for ideas, etc. Most of what I came up with was either really expensive versions on Ebay, or have a homemade costume.  Since I can’t sew and I didn’t want to drop $300 on a costume online, I decided to drop the idea.   When I heard that the Jazz Half was encouraging costumes, I decided to pick the idea back up again!  We looked and searched for pink skirts with matching pink tops and couldn’t come up with anything. I remembered reading that the girl’s home uniforms were white, and we were able to find a white running skirt/shirt so we went with that!  We also bought red hats, red non-cotton baseball socks, and red belts and voila!  A costume was born!! :0)


Back to the race!  It was a little chilly that morning so Kayla and I wore light jackets to the start. My brother was nice enough to bring them back to the rooms for us!  Something nice about this hotel is that it was within walking distance to the start line of the race!  Very convenient!  I researched to find what hotels were close to where the start line was going to be and that’s how I found this hotel!  It was nice for my brother too cause after we started the race, he could go back to the hotel, eat breakfast, and take a nap! :0)


At the start line, I ran into a bunch of my running group friends!  That was really nice, especially since I didn’t know that some of them were running this race!


Heather and I kept texting each other trying to find out where the other was at. She didn’t see me as she walked by so I screamed out her name and ran to give her a hug…not like I was that far from her to begin with!  People must have thought I was way too cheery for that early in the morning! Hah!


This race didn’t have coral starts.  They had elite, relay runners, and….well….everyone else!  I fell into the “everyone else” category!

We lined up and were fairly close to the start line which was nice!  While waiting for the start, we sang the National Anthem which had quite a Cajun flair it!  It was interesting, let’s just say that!

A guy dressed as Michael Phelps stood next to us!  His costume was crazy!  He had on an American flag speedo and a bunch of fake party favor medals around his neck!  It was hilarious!  He actually ended up doing really well in the end!

7 a.m. arrived and…..


We were off! 

Part two will come shortly!  Stay tuned!

In the meantime, check out the blogs of two other runners who also ran this race!  A lot of our pictures from the race are the same, but we all have our own unique versions of the story to tell!  Kayla ran her very first Half Marathon and Heather pushed hard to PR! 



  1. I don't know why I look so weird it that picture of us. I think i had lost my mind and was cold. The national anthem was hilarious!
    also, the michael phelps costume was original...but I don't see how it would have been "comfortable" for him to run in that if ou know what I mean.

  2. love the costumes great idea a league of their own is one of my favorites and you can't go wrong with subway... looking forward to part two., :)

  3. I think I've used those same names for my hubby =)

    Can't wait for part two!

  4. Way to go on the half Marathon. I loved yours and Kayla's outfit!!

  5. Great race report. Your costumes were so creative. Love it!

  6. Wow! I love the costumes. I've been wanting to do just that. Could you please help a girl out and tell me what brand and where to buy the skirt/shirt combo and specially how you got the emblems on? I was dreading my Halloween half, but now I'm totally looking forward to it!


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