This past weekend, the Running Lushes took on our eighth 1/2 marathon of the year with the 2017 Rock n Roll Los Angeles 1/2 marathon race. While we are no strangers to the Rock n Roll series, this was our first time taking on the City of Angels and it exceeded expectations!
We heard this was a costume race, so we packed up our tutus and leopard ears and flew a cheap Southwest Airlines flight to LAX. We stayed at the Residence Inn which was right at the finish line and about a 10 minute walk from the start — all near the LA Live area. This was a huge bonus as it was very quick to get back and shower after the race!
Top takeaways for #RNRLosAngeles:
- Course: Fairly flat, but does have some rolling hills. This is not the most picturesque course, but runners can take in LA Live, USC, LA Memorial Coliseum and Exposition Park. The bands along the way were some of the best we have heard in any Rock n Roll — our favorite was the Navy Band Southwest Destroyers!
- Expo: Smallish expo despite the very large space (LA Convention Center) where it was held. It was a very unexpected surprise to get a photo op with the one and only Meb and wish him luck on his last marathon! However, we missed some of our favorite vendors, such as Nuun, Glukos, and Sport Beans.
- Finisher Area: The finishing chute was similar to most races, but then the Finishers Zone was across a street to the LA Convention Center requiring a trip up a few flights of stairs (not sure that was the best idea after a half marathon). It was a little confusing to find, but once we did, the Headliner Band was excellent. There was both beer and wine for those over age 21 and no waits! The medal was a nice design and size and finisher shirt was also a nice, light gray tech-tee.
- Crowd/Vibe: The costumes definitely give this race a unique experience and folks really upped their costume game with ComicCon at the same time — some were truly amazing. But the costume-clad participants seemed to forget their race etiquette and slower racers failed to stay to the right to allow faster runners to pass. There were lots of cheering spectators lending great enthusiasm to the experience.
- Organization/Support: This being a Rock n Roll race, there is excellent course support. Plenty of water stops, great volunteers, lots of cheers. Love the Glukos gel at mile 9.
Parting Thoughts – This was a nice add to the Running Lushes 2017 Race Calendar. Not sure we will do this particular race again, but it was a very fun weekend and a solid race. And while not a stranger Los Angeles, I haven’t been there in a while and it was great to see the transformation of the LA Live area. It is a nice central location and lots to see and do (and eat and drink) so makes it a good jumping off point for a mini vacation to the beach.
PS. If you were the guy running in a diaper — no, just no.
Residence Inn – Downtown LA Live – great location, clean and features large rooms with full kitchen and seating area.
Colori Kitchen – Great little italian restaurant with all your pre-race carb loading basics. BYOB and moderately priced
Whole Foods – has a bar, hot and quick foods area and anything you may need. CVS is also across the street.
Yard House – amazing Bloody Marys (spicy maple bacon, anyone?) and very good beer and cocktail selection. Very close to finish line. Also has food.
Triple Eight China Bar and Grill – has a good selection of beer (even strong beer), wine and sake. Very close to finish line. Also has food.
Firestone Walker Brewing Co – Venice Beach – took a trip to the beach and this place had good beers and some very interesting tator tots.