Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Rock and Roll DC Expo

I started typing up my Rock and Roll Half review and it was getting a bit long so I'm splitting it up in 2 parts. I'm going to start with the expo and pre-race and then I'll do another one about race day.

So let's get started! I was already nervous about this race and wanted to try to make it as easy as possible. I found a good discount on a hotel downtown a few weeks before the race so we decided to get a hotel room and make a weekend of it. Friday, I worked from home and then went downtown to check into the hotel around 3.  My room wasn't ready so I checked my bags with the desk and hopped on the metro to go to the convention center, where the expo was held this year.

This was a very convenient location for the expo. I hopped of the metro and there was an entrance to the convention center right there.  And the signs were pretty clear to direct you from the entrance to the expo since there were a couple events going on that day.

The first thing I saw at the expo was a set up of computers where you could look up your bib number if needed. There were plenty of computers and not much of a line here.  In fact, I hardly saw any lines at all at the expo! It was very well laid out. You walked in the doors and saw the signs to go to bib pick up. Again, no line at all. In addition to the bib, there was a shoe tag which I wasn't sure how to put on. Never fear, there was a video playing with instructions.

This may have been the longest "line" I saw at the expo.

Then you were funneled into an area to pick up your shirt and bag. There was a line here but just 1 or 2 people.  And it was split up by shirt size, so there wasn't a line for some sizes. Next you were guided into an area with official race merchandise from Brooks as well as a sectioned off area where Brooks was doing things like free gait analysis. They even had a mechanical bull that was shaped like a shoe that people seemed to be enjoying riding!  I didn't give it a try but it seemed like fun. I did like some of the official merchandise and ended up buying an extra shirt.

After that, you were released into the expo at large. There were a good amount of vendors but it never felt too crowded or congested.  I wandered around checking out various booths.  I sampled some Mama Chia drinks, which I ended up liking so I bought 2 for later.  I also bought some compression calf sleeves from Bondi Bands since I wasn't sure how my compression socks would hold up in the rain.

My haul from the expo (the shirt on the right is the one I bought)

There were also some fun photo ops :)

And that was it.  I spent about an hour at the expo total and then headed back to the hotel.  My room was ready so I went up and laid out my "flat runner" as well as all the things I needed to take with me race morning.

Mike met me at the hotel once he was done with work and we went out for some dinner.  We found a place with a veggie pasta I could eat for my carbs and then watched some tv.  I called it an early night around 9 so I could try to be rested for the next morning.

Photo courtesy of Run Disney website

On another note, registration for Disney's Wine and Dine Half Marathon weekend opened today. Both the 5k and half sold out in under 40 minutes so I'm thankful I got myself in for the half and for the 5k, which I'll be doing with Mike and my parents. So now my Fall half marathon plans are set!