This is the first 10k I’ve done. I’d originally signed up for the half, but due to some time constraints with traveling family, we had to get back home by a certain time on Sunday. I dropped down to the 10k since there was no way I’d finish the half early enough for us to get home.

To be honest, I probably would have dropped down to the 10k regardless. I wasn’t sure that I would be able to make it to New Orleans, so I was barely training for anything. It wasn’t until a few weeks prior to the run that I even booked the hotel; usually, I book a couple of months in advance! Additionally, I mentioned in a previous post that I intended to step back from halfs for a while. I think I’m mostly over that since I’ve been looking for halfs to complete in anticipation of a marathon I am definitely training planning to run (more on that later!).

If you’re wondering, changing my race was easy. First, I got my bib. The process to get my bib involved claiming it on the Rock’n’Roll app and showing the app and my driver’s license to the volunteers. No printed waiver needed. Then I took my bib to the Solutions table. I told them I wanted to drop to the 10k. After the person made the change on the computer, I was good to go. I was a little unsure because I didn’t receive a sticker or anything to indicate the change. But I checked, and all I had to do was make sure I started at the right line.

A 10k is such a world of difference from a half. For one, this had fewer participants and four corrals versus the half’s twenty (!) corrals. But the start line was just as energetic. As I was checking out bibs, I noticed lots of other halfers had dropped down too, so I didn’t feel too weird about it.

Side note: I don’t recall this service at other Rock’n’Roll runs, but they had spectator transportation! My mom and aunt watched me at the start, then boarded a bus that took them to the finish. That was so great since we had a brief moment of panic over parking. Again, we were leaving as soon as I finished, and if we had to walk back to the car or park somewhere in the middle, it would have taken us longer to get home than if I had just done the half.

My mindset was 100% different going into this 10k. Instead of passing a mile marker and thinking, Am I done yet??, I was thinking, NEARLY THERE! The course entertainment wasn’t as good as I assume it was for the half — in my experience, there are more live bands on the half marathon course. The 10k course had primarily DJs and at least one live band that played a really slow song. Did not understand that choice, but okay.

These guys were beasts! They kept getting stopped for photos.

The course passed a Mardi Gras float on the way to the French Quarter. Super fun! The French Quarter was still being cleaned though — as I was running through, it occurred to me that they have to do that every morning because the French Quarter gets wrecked each evening. Like. Wrecked.

We also ran through some cute neighborhoods — neighborhoods are pretty standard on these courses. It reminded me of Savannah in a way with its old-world vibe. Some of the roads were rough, and at least two people fell down as a result. New Orleans! Get your roads fixed!

There’s not much else to say about the course. As I was approaching the finish line, so were the first and second place half marathon runners. Course volunteers started shouting that the 10k runners needed to stay to the right as the two men zoomed by us. It was exciting!

I crossed the finish line to the sound of the announcer mispronouncing my last name. I aggressively posed for my mom and aunt as they took photos of me, sweaty and gross and tired but holding a medal. And then the shuttle took us back to the start area (or rather, close enough so that our walk to the car was very short!). I do wish I had run the half, but I’m also glad I did the 10k. Recommended!

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