Rock and Roll VA Beach (1:28.49)

Rock and Roll VA Beach (1:28.49)

When the orthopedist told me on Friday there was no reason not to run the Rock and Roll Va Beach on August 31 st, I immediately got excited.  Even though my arm was cleared to run, my legs felt stiff from never really getting the lactic acid out from my 8k the previous weekend.  It had had a week to sit there and fester so although my arm was okay, my calves were sore.  By sore, I mean running a 9-minute mile the day before felt the way a 6:30 mile should.  Rock n Roll VA Beach is known for the American Music Festival and having live bands along the course.

Two of my friends, Heather and Laura, came down to race Rock and Roll Va Beach too.  We all piled into the car at 5:00 along with dad headed to the race start.  We quickly found parking and made it to the start an hour early.


While lining up in carrol 1 of Rock and Roll Va Beach, I was a bit more cautious since I didn’t want to bump into anyone.  The doctor had said due to the location of the fracture, the only way I could shatter or hurt the bone more was to fall on the exact same spot with the exact same force.  I still did not want to bump into anyone just because I’m overly cautious (and have pretty bad luck).  My GPS didn’t synch correctly, so I don’t have mile splits, but I’m 100% okay with that.

The first few miles of Rock and Roll Va Beach, I ran with Mike.  It’s always nice to be able to find someone to run and be about the same pace.   The 5kers started at the same time as Rock and Roll Va Beach, which was somewhat weird with a 15,000 person race.  The first three miles of Rock and Roll Va Beach was a blur and we were all packed in like little sardines.

At the 2.5-mile mark of Rock and Roll Va Beach I noticed the 5k shoot began, I couldn’t help but think to myself that having a 5k shoot of .6 long was a touch too much.  


After we clicked off three miles of Rock and Roll Va Beach, I had already sweat through my top.  I’m not the biggest sweater and by the time I got water (which was incredibly difficult when you can’t grab things with your right hand), my tank was soaking through.  I knew my body had already begun to overheat.  At that point, I decided it was wise to grab Gatorade and water at every stop.

Miles 4-6 of Rock and Roll Va Beach were uneventful.  Although I didn’t feel great at Rock and Roll Va Beach, I did begin to pass people.  This part of Rock and Roll Va Beach was straight, flat and on the main road of the area.  It made sense because it’s such a big field of people, but it was pretty hard on the legs and boring on the mind. My most memorable moment of this point was saying go “Team Hoyt,” and one of the ladies said…Hey, I read your blog!  Team Hoyt never ceases to amaze me.  (They push disabled children in strollers while running a lot of races.)  Every person that is apart of this is truly amazing.

Around mile 6 of Rock and Roll Va Beach, we turned and went into a nice side street.  It had shade.  I made some small talk with a few of the racers around me.  The relay handoffs were around mile 7, which was a bit motivating because more people were cheering.  I was running (unknowingly) with the first relay team and he did his hand off and left).  When we turned into the base around mile 8, it was instaheatbox again.

I hate you straight flat pavement.
I hate you straight flat pavement.  Just kidding, lets wave to Ally again.

It made a huge u shape around the base so you were able to see people about a mile in front of you wishing you were a mile closer to the finish.  My only thought during mile 9 of Rock and Roll Va Beach was oh my stars I need more water.

I felt a sudden burst of excitement around mile 10 of Rock and Roll Va Beach because I realized I only had a 5k to the finish.  I attempted to pick up the pace but that was not happening because it was so hot and I was tired.

Mile 11 of Rock and Roll Va Beach, we went back over the only hill on the course (i.e., a bridge).  My legs were shot and I was dying and saying I think I can I think I can.  The humidity was getting the worse and I was pretty miserable.  I want to use proper blogging and running technique about how I negative split Rock and Roll Va Beach, but I didn’t.  It was fading and the last 3 miles of Rock and Roll Va Beach were some of the hardest I’ve run in a while.

All aboard the pain train and down the bridge.
All aboard the pain train and down the bridge.

When we turned onto the Virginia Beach boardwalk, I could see the finish line.  The Rock and Roll Va Beach finish line that was still .75 away.  I thought the Rock and Roll Va Beach finish line might never come and I think those five minutes or so are contenders for the longest 5 minutes of my life.  I wanted to try and kick to the end…but didn’t have the energy.  So I just ran cursing every four letting word under my breath and hoping it killed time.

I finally crossed the Rock and Roll Va Beach finish line in 1:28.49 which I was pleased with. 

Afterward, we relaxed on the beach and also ran into Kristy, who had a great race herself.

Done forever.
Done forever.

Overall thoughts of Rock and Roll Va Beach:

I had no idea where Rock and Roll Va Beach would go.  I know I say that a lot, but after my previous week of training my calves were still sore. A lot of people said the rest would do me well, which of course, my body was recovering, but the lactic acid was still festering in my legs from the previous week.  The heat and humidity (around 75-80 and 94% humidity) was certainly a huge factor of this race as well.

All of that negativity aside, I did have a great race at Rock and Roll Va Beach.  Was it a PR? No.  Did I have a great time at Rock n Roll Virginia Beach with great friends before I move tomorrow?  Yes.

Questions for you:

Have you ever run a Rock and Roll race?  Have you run Rock and Roll Va Beach?


  1. First, well done on the race photos–and your finishing time too, of course. 🙂 Just got home from a super humid and sweaty run, and you already know I’d rather brave the cold of the tundra than deal with the heat. 😉

    1. It comes to a point that I would rather run in cold then heat. Lake Effect half marathon is the brutal opposite of this. (ie: snow, ice, cold in your face ha).

  2. Great review, love the way it is very personal! Great time!

  3. I’ve raced two RnR marathons (Arizona and San Diego), one RnR half (Seattle), and led a pace group for the 2nd half of RnR Denver.

    Nice race! My philosophy on hydration/fuel is distance running (especially marathon) requires more fuel than muscles can store. I take Gatorade at every station (no gels for me).

    1. One day I would love to lead a pace group. I think that would be so much fun. I don’t do gels in half marathons but I do have a big breakfast 3 hours before..around 500 calories (which is why I don’t think I need gels). .

      1. I eat before, too. Not a huge breakfast. Just a bagel and peanut butter or something similar that will sit well. Also, a Gatorade Prime about 15 minutes prior to launch. Race nutrition is tricky for some. I’ve been lucky – never bonked – but definitely had to find what works for me. You’re a machine…probably across the finish line before my breakfast would be digested!

  4. damn you are fast, lol. i’d much rather it be freezing than hot. i reallly can’t stand being hot.

  5. Nice work Hollie!! I love having Team Hoyt at our races. Every time I see them I get extra motivated to run faster. Sunday was brutal and I’d take 0 degree racing over 100 any day. Training however I’d rather run in the heat.

  6. awesome photos! and good thing you were wearing the flyte tank at least, it’s so light! especially for how hot it was out there! great race 🙂 You and Laura seemed like you had a great time meeting up. Wish I hadn’t worked all weekend! 🙁

  7. Awesome race once again, Hollie! I’m so glad you were not only able to race after the crazy, unfortunate, unnecessary injury, but also able to run fast in that heat!! Amazing! I would take 0 degrees over 100 any day! Love how you turned that question into an official poll. You crack me up!!

  8. Hahaha love the poll. I hate running in humidity — 94 percent is pretty bad! I am glad you played it safe with the hydration!

  9. Nice work! I love how much fun you are having in some of the race pics. Sounds like a mentally tough race in hot conditions coming off the crazy injury. Also lot’s of fun you got to be with your friends! 🙂

  10. Great Job Hollie! I can’t believe someone died during the race. It always freaks me out to hear it because you never know what can happen! You girls look SO cute! I wish I could have been there!

    1. It’s sad but in that sort of heat/humidity and a 15,000 person race there are bound to have medical issues. That being said RnR was very serious about making sure people were okay.

  11. Gah, how do you do it? Running a 1:28 with a fractured elbow…I can’t even imagine. Now I have NO excuse for not getting under 1:30 – my injuries are nothing compared to that. You’re incredible – I really have no words that can do your running abilities justice.

    I can’t stand feeling dehydrated – those temperatures sound absolutely brutal. And I can’t believe you still have a smile on your face in your pics even with such tough conditions! I bet the men around you were a bit annoyed, given the fact that they seem to be slowly dying and you’re just cruising past them 😛

  12. I’d much rather run in the cold!! I ran va beach rnr and it was miserable!! Great finish time!

  13. I am still blown away by this race. can i break my arm and be fast? haha. just kidding but i like how you are so aware of your body temperatures and need for water. that is something I am desperately trying to work on so that I don’t get to mile 7 and puke or get blurry vision. I am so bad with fueling because i never know what will good and what will make me feel worse.

  14. I am just so happy you were cleared to run. I know how tough it would’ve been for you if you had to stay on the sidelines. It was such a great weekend and I already cannot wait to see you again!! Also your race photos are the funniest friggin’ thing, I was LOL’ing for real last night when I saw the one of you pointing at your arm hahaha!

  15. I’m glad you got to have fun with your friends at a race before you move! Btw I would totally run in 0 degree weather…

  16. I don’t know HOW you look so cute in all your pictures. I would look like a wounded cat running a race in that heat. You’re amazing! I think I’d probably rather run in 100 degree weather… although not by much. haha

  17. Someone died?!? oh wow. I am jealous that you got to run this and then hang out at the beach! I am really glad you had so much fun with friends and lived it up your last weekend in VA! Not every race can be a PR, but like we said fun is what counts!

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