The high points are, obviously, the start and finish of the race. But in between there are several hours of running, covering 26-plus miles.
The course took us through the French Quarter, up Magazine Street, through Audubon Park along Esplanade and eventually winding up at City Park.
"No matter what it is, it's about goal setting," said Frank Shorter of Mardi Gras Marathon. "They determine they want to run half or full; they put in the training, though some people want to do it for a little more."
And we were definitely a group doing it for more. While we all feel a great deal of personal satisfaction, the people we were running for are the folks here at home who need a little financial help as they fight cancer, the Anderson Cancer Center Patient Benevolence Fund.
By mile twenty, our blistered feet hurt; the sun was beating down on our shoulders and some of us fought the urge to take a quick nap along the route. The important thing is that we did it. We may have been tired and in pain, but that doesn't even compare to the battle many in our community face every day.
"'This one probably hurt more than any of the rest, but like we've said, the people who we do this for hurt a lot more," said WTOK news director John Johnson. "We do it for them. This is for people who are suffering from cancer."
"My grandmother died in December of '09 and I ran in her memory," said WTOK digital sales director, Angie Barker. "And one of my best friends' sister died, and I ran in her memory also."
"I like to run. I hope to do more marathons," said WTOK anchor and reporter, Nick Adam. "But to do something that you know is helping an organization in town with all the money going to patients who need it it really is just an incredible experience."
But along with being tough, the route was a blast. There were bands at every mile, and who isn't entertained by the sights and sounds of New Orleans?
I can't believe John Johnson convinced me to run 26 plus miles, but I'm so glad he did.
Finish times for the WTOK crew:
Nick Adam - 4:16:11
Angie Barker - 4:39:26
Lindsey Brown - 4:46:30
John Johnson - 7:02:59