Race morning I got up at 5am and made some coffee in our room, had an energy bar for breakfast, stretched and got all did up. We left our hotel at 6:20 which ended up being way too late. I HATE not being early to races; it stresses me out. The part of racing I dislike the most is just getting to the start.
So we leave too late and misjudge how long it’ll take us to walk a mile through the crowds.
I get to corral #32, the very last corral, say goodbye to my man ,and start trying to move forward. And it’s 6:50. I don’t get anywhere fast so I jump a fence, run alongside the corrals and then jump 2 more fences into corral #1. I was like a wild animal jumping over things and going crazy.
I was supposed to be in corral #2, but I wasn’t moving once I got in there so I stayed in #1. The race started a couple minutes later, and my garmin wouldn’t start! I didn’t have enough time to mess with it so I rebooted it which took forever, and it finally started around mile 3.
Needless to say, I was all flustered and jazzed up when we started. and not in a good way. I wasn’t sure how fast I was running and I felt drained from the stress of getting to the start. Not a great start…
We start heading down the Strip, it was beautiful weather, I was in a good corral, so I kept telling myself to let everything else go and enjoy the race. It was hard for the first 3 miles because I was messing with my garmin, but eventually I calmed myself down, got situated and just ran.
I started out running 8 min/miles and decided not to turn my music on in effort to slow down my start and not run too fast too soon. I eventually turned the music at mile 13, but it was fun because I heard 4 different people yell SkinnyRunner!
We headed down the Strip and into old Vegas and turned around at mile 7ish and headed back down. The half and the full ran together, but it was never crowded and I was able to keep around a 7:50 pace.
It was around mile 7 when a guy blew by me and told me that his wife loves the blog. Thanks wife!
This was getting into the older part of town. They changed the course this year so you ran farther north before heading back down the Strip. I think it makes a good half course, but the full marathon is SO.BORING.
This was kinda funny to run through. That guy must be wearing some serious stretch jeans.
Is the Circus Circus clown slightly creepy or what?!
I took my first gel at mile 8 as we headed back down the Strip and to the half finish. It was a little earlier than I probably would have taken it normally, but they were handing them out and I already had 3 in my hands that I brought, so I took it then.
The Strip running was really fun because there’s so much to look at and see. Although there weren’t a ton of spectators, it was still high energy and exciting, and those miles flew by.
The water fountains were turned on at the Bellagio which was fun to see.
At mile 13 the marathoners took a right and headed out into the desert. I knew from last year that it was going to get boring fast. I took a gel and concentrated on getting to mile 17 which was a big turn around where you head back towards the Strip.
By 13 I was starting to feel tired. I think last week’s marathon was in my head which made me think I was even more tired. And I’m sure my legs were tired too, but it was like I was telling myself I was gassed.
At mile 15 I met reader Pam (and later to0, another post) and we talked for a quick mile. We were running around 7:42s.
We parted and I got to mile 17 and turned towards the Strip; this was a HUGE mental boost for me. Mile 17 and 18 were on fire, I felt so good and was running 7:30s. At 18 I took my third gel.
And then around 19 all the switchbacks, little out and backs, figure 8’s started. It was like they needed to add some serious mileage to the course and had no where to go. It felt like we were running in circles. I could see the Strip and we were off running little roads in an industrial wasteland.
That high from mile 17 and 18 left me real quick like. I hated these final miles up to the finish. They were super boring and felt aimless and pointless. I guess I’m a point-to-point racer; I want to be headed towards the finish line, not making crop circles.
I kept going and it didn’t get really hard until about mile 22. I took my fourth and final gel hoping that I’d get some energy because I felt hosed.
The last 4-5 miles were so hard; they took forever and just dragged on and on. Finally I saw the mile 25 sign and really picked it up. I didn’t know what time I was even close to finishing since my garmin was all janky, but I gave it all I had that last mile.
We finished up on the Strip and not knowing how much farther we had to go, I started sprinting about a half mile out. A couple times I almost tripped on myself, I was going so fast and was so tired.
Finally the finish! I ran as hard as I had in me that day and finished with a new PR: 3:22:10. I was 260th overall, the 30th woman and 7th in my division.
I was so spent I sat down at a water table and tried to catch my breath. I felt like I ran as fast as I possibly could that last mile and was completely empty.
Thankfully the husband found me right away and became my photographer for our post-race modeling show:
Work it, girl.
I grabbed a banana, energy bar, Cytomax and water and we walked over to The Mandalay Bay to watch some football. and take more pictures. doi.
We took a picture in front of this tree last year so had to do it again but the hubs didn’t want in it this time so I went solo.
I went to the same Starbucks as last year and got a misto while we watched football for awhile and then trekked back to our room to shower. I had so much energy gel and drink all over my face and neck I was like a swamp monster.
I was pretty sore after the race, and I still feel a little sore this morning. But I’m happy with a PR and how the race went. It was really hard; those last 6 miles were no Seattle marathon, walk in the clouds, this is easy! sorta thing. They were tough. So hard that I don’t know if I want to run Vegas again. I think it’s time for a new December race… CIM, Dallas White Rock??