Part two is all about race day! Now, to preface this, I didn’t have my best race. Was it the fact that I brought no fuel with me on the course? Was it the inhalation of all the cigarette smoke in the casinos we walked in and out of to get places throughout the weekend? Or was it the many adult beverages I had leading up to this Sunday night race? It was probably a combination of everything, but what can you do? What’s done is done…plus I was on racecation, so I really wasn’t eating the best food either.
Sunday morning, we woke up and decided to go for an EASY 2 mile run. There is something kind of awesome being up at 8am on a Sunday morning in Vegas. There was nobody out, except for a few people who were still partying from the night before (thanks guys in suits who started chanting “USA-USA-USA” when we ran past them…ha).
Once we finished, we headed back to the hotel got ready for the day and went to breakfast. After that, in order to save our legs, we basically stayed in our hotel room and watched a Law & Order marathon on TNT. Like I said in our last post, we are certainly party animals!
We grabbed some lunch at 1pm and then went back up to the room and got ready for the race. I had laid out my outfit that morning and put my new Schwings on my shoes! So excited about those.
We headed over to the start village which was across the street from the Luxor. We didn’t use the gear check, since we carried everything we needed, so I’m not sure how that went.
We got there just in time to see All-American Rejects start playing at 3pm. I actually really enjoyed their set! I had no idea how many songs of theirs I actually knew until they started playing. Good fun.
Then at around 4-ish we started funneling into our corrals. We found it fairly easily and it didn’t feel too crowded, so that was nice. They married a big bunch of people at the beginning of the race and I wish I could have heard what was going on, but couldn’t really.
Finally after about 20-30 minutes, once all the corrals before us had gone, we were off!
Here are a few things I noted during this race:
I loved the start going by the Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas sign. We didn’t stop to take a picture, but it was fun to see. The moon was incredible that night too, I couldn’t stop staring at it, until we got to the strip. WOW! The whole time we were on the strip I kept saying, “this is so cool”! We got to see the tail end of the water show at the Bellagio, that was awesome.
Then at around mile 5 we were at the end of the strip and heading toward Fremont street. I never realized how many wedding chapels there were on just that strip! It was chapel after chapel.
At this point I was still feeling pretty good and keeping about a 10 minute pace.
Mile 7-9 was…interesting. We made a right turn, I can’t remember what mile it was, but it was basically into darkness. We ran through neighborhoods where it was so dark, I could’t even see the ground. I was nervous I may fall! There was no course support in those areas, and no bands.
Speaking of bands, there were a lot less bands than I thought there were going to be. The ones I did see, I really liked, but I just thought there would be more.
At this point, I was start to lose energy and was really looking forward to the GU stop…until we got there and there was no more GU…whoops! BUMMER!
We finally got to a water/gatorade stop and I chugged. I desperately needed some sugar at that point. The last 3 miles, we were back on the strip and I was dealing with a side cramp. I started going to a very negative place in my brain and was ready to just walk it in, but luckily I had my fiancé, Rob, there with me encouraging me and trying to keep me on pace.
A couple of times, I just wanted to tell him, NO, I don’t want to run anymore. But I didn’t, I kept it up.
As were were rounding mile 11.5, we were passed on the right side by the 1st two marathon finishers who were neck and neck. Can you believe that? The MARATHON finishers ran faster that we did and they had just done double the miles. So crazy how fast they can run.
As we got closer to the finish, my pace started to slow down. Rob was really trying to keep me positive and keep going. He asked if I wanted to know what pace I was at, I said no. I just wanted to be done.
Finally, we crossed the finish line at 2:15:18. Only 1 minute and 15 seconds off my best time.
Not terrible, but not what I necessarily was hoping for. But again, it is what it is and I ran 13.1 miles! I always have to remind myself of that when I miss the mark a little bit.
After we crossed the finish line we took a picture and I was in search of food. No one was handing out anything, they had buckets of water, buckets of chocolate milk and we finally found a bagel!
It felt like we had to walk another mile or so to get out of the finish line chute, but finally we were out. My legs felt like like all the muscles had suddenly stiffened and man did they hurt. Once we got back to the room, we were getting ready to go out to dinner when something went wrong with my stomach. This goes back to the beginning of this blog post. Was it that I didn’t have enough fuel? Or not the right food the entire weekend? Who knows. Whatever it was, we had to order room service, because there was no way I was going out with the way I was feeling. I was able to choke down some soup…barely and finally dozed off. It was rough.
Luckily, I woke up the next morning feeling a ton better and starving! We ended up at the Wynn Buffet for breakfast. AMAZING! Then stopped by Serendipity for a frozen hot chocolate. That was the cherry on top of our last day in Vegas.
All in all, I was definitely glad I did this race once. I don’t think I will do it again. I wished there were more bands and I was bummed the half marathon didn’t get to run through the light tunnel thing at Fremont Street.
Another issue on the course was the volunteers were standing far away from the tables of water/gatorade which caused an already narrow area to become even more narrow. I think maybe they just weren’t told they should stay close to the tables and they probably thought they were being helpful coming out to the racers, but it just caused a traffic jam.
Oh and the running out of the GU, which is my fault, because really I should be running with my own fuel and not relying on the race people to provide it for me. Lesson learned.
Next race is a 5k Turkey Trot! Looking forward to run off all that turkey and stuffing I’ll be eating on Thanksgiving!
If you missed my part one of my Vegas Racecation click here!
QOTD: Have you done any Rock ‘n’ Roll Series races? If so, which one was your favorite?