13.1 and done!

Happy Monday! I’m on cloud 9 today because we actually got to run our half marathon yesterday!!

We’d been hearing everything forecast for Sunday from rain to thunderstorms to full on floods throughout the week, so we were really worried it might not happen at all, but it did, and it was awesome!

Let’s back it up a bit first.

Friday night, Chris and I headed to Montclair which is one of our favorite Jersey towns (after JC of course). Our original plan was to head to Cuban Pete’s. The food there is absolutely slamming, but the staff is always incredibly rude. The food is so good they just don’t care at all whether you like them or not. We got there a bit late (around 8), but when they rudely informed us it’d be no less than an hour until we sat, we decided we really weren’t craving Cuban food that  bad, so we looked for other options. Enter Samba!

It was a cute place with an interesting menu, but the food was just good, not great. We started with a chicken appetizer that actually was delicious, but my entree of tilapia and shrimp came in a much too creamy sauce. The fried bananas tasted like a weird cross between bananas and mozzarella sticks. No matter, the staff was super friendly, and the atmosphere was nice, so I’d probably give it another shot.

Saturday we woke up and hit the road early to head to New Brunswick to check in at the race expo, but not before hitting  the DMV to renew my license and officially get the title for my car! I’m a car owner for a week (more on that later)! The DMV MVC (did you know it’s called that now? is that only a NJ thing?) really is getting better, but it still took almost two hours.

When we finally left, we were starving, so we made a pit stop at our favorite college spot, Sanctuary, for some lunch.

It’s a comic book/video game store plus an eatery and an ice cream shop. They do it all, and it has such a nice college-y feel, that it made me miss the good old days… for about one minute until some real life hungover, puffy-faced college kids came in, and then I remembered that I’m actually quite enjoying my mid twenties. I don’t miss the terrible eating, lack of sleep, or studying much at all.

After feeding our faces, cobb salad for me and a wrap for Chris, we headed to the Rutgers Unite Half Marathon race expo to pick up our numbers and check out the gear.

We got there towards the end, so they’re weren’t too many people wandering around, and most of the gear was gone, but the whole thing was really well run, and the volunteers were so friendly. That really helped calm our nerves and get us excited for the race.

At this point, the weather was beautiful. It was over 70 degrees and brilliantly sunny, so we were having a hard time believing these doom and gloom weather predictions, but this is NJ, and things can change in the atmosphere very rapidly, so we figured we should probably prepare for the worst.

Neither of us had so much as a rain jacket, so on our way back home, we swung through Sports Authority to get some gear. At first I was deterred by the $90 rain jackets. What am I? A Rockefeller? No, but I do know how to shop, so I wandered into the kids section and found a large child’s Columbia rain jacket for $45! Bingo! It’s still steep for a jacket, but it’s super waterproof with a very breathable lining, and I’d wear it outside of running, so I’m considering it a score

Check out that cute purple stripe and polka dot lining. I dig. I also picked up another pair of Nike Tempos because they had a purple stripe, and I just can’t help myself around that color. Chris got a rain jacket too plus his first ever pair of running shorts. Yes, he trained for a half marathon in basketball shorts. Can you believe that? I’d suggested running shorts before, but you know that saying about leading a horse to water? Well, let’s just say, after finally running in the right shorts, Chris is a pretty devoted equine.

After scoring our loot, we headed home for our own little pasta dinner

Then, sure as sugar, the rain came down hard and fast Saturday night, and we went to bed prepared for the worst.

Sunday morning, the sky was overcast, but there was no rain! We kept our fingers crossed that New Brunswick (about 45 minutes south of us) was under the same dry skies, and we were right! It was chilly, but we started the race with no rain! Of course, we didn’t need our jackets. That’s just the way that works, isn’t it?

The race was amazing! I’ll do a full review this week, but for now let me say, the course was fun, the volunteers were amazing, and it was just an all around great time.

This was Chris’ first half marathon, and I am so proud of him. He was absolutely the best race buddy I could ever ask for. He woke up in a great mood and helped me get super excited on the drive down. We had great talks and lots of laughs throughout the whole race, and even when the rain started falling (yes, it eventually came around mile 6) he never once complained. He kept a great pace with very little guidance from me, and was just so upbeat and wonderful.

When Chris decided he wanted to train for a half marathon, I was a little nervous that he was just doing it for me and, as a result, he wouldn’t be as dedicated or get as much out of it as he should, but I quickly discovered that when he does something, he goes all in. He was always such a good sport through every run. He handled an injury and recovery with loads of patience and grace. When I found out he went running in Las Vegas during a bachelor party weekend, I knew he was hooked! He poured his whole heart into this training and race, and it really showed. I didn’t think it was possible to love this man anymore, but after today, I really think I do. He’s reading about international half marathons, stretching, and marathon sniffles as I write. How cute is that?

We finished in 2:27 with huge smiles on our faces and just about as happy as we could be.

Oh and wet and gross. Very wet and gross, but with shiny new bling

Let’s go R-U!

We stuffed our faces with some of these

and lots of these

Pickles and fries. Think I was craving salt a bit?

After driving back up to Jersey City (aren’t post race drives eternal?), I showered for 6 hours, finished the first season of The Walking Dead, went grocery shopping (even I was impressed with myself on that one) and continued to eat my face off. We also had to deal with an ant infestation- not fun, but under control. Like I said, I’ll do a race review later, but for now, I’m gonna go read about running with my love.

In case you’re wondering, here’s this week’s menu:

  • Monday- Quinoa with kale and chicken sausage
  • Tueday- Spring Pea Risotto and salad
  • Wednesday- BBQ chicken and sweet potatoes
  • Thursday- chicken tenders and tomato soup
  • Friday- out for anniversary dinner!
  • Saturday & Sunday- in South Carolina! (more on that later too. it’s been an insane few weeks)

Workouts are up in the air, but I’m certain I’ll be resting today. Hope your week is wonderful!

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