I flew into Vegas on Friday, December 1st, and promptly checked in to my hotel — The MGM Grand. I couldn’t wait to get over to the Expo – located at the Sands Convention Center, inside the Venetian, so I unpacked and organized my clothes as quickly and neatly as humanly type A possible, and then made my way to catch a taxi.
I forgot how expensive taxi’s are in Vegas. Ridiculous!! At any rate, I made my way over to the Expo and found it to be well organized. A huge open space to pick up race numbers according to your corral (I was in corral 2), then onto picking up my tech T — by Brooks! Finally, the swag bag, full of mostly brochures, but I like them empty so I can fill it with goodies from the expo.
First stop, Brooks Cavalcade of Curiosities!
Have I mentioned how much I love Brooks? I won a t-shirt and tried my hand a new pair of shoes (I didn’t win the shoes).
I made my way through the expo, had a few healthy protein nibbles and was back at the hotel and ready for bed by 8:30 pm. Exciting for Las Vegas right?! But hey – I had a race to run!!
The next morning, I met my friend from Virginia and we made our way to the Expo so she could get her race packet. I chilled all day in this attire (not very Vegasy, I know):
(I love this Brooks Run Happy Cupcake Tech T — so soft and comfortable. I also wore my CEP compression socks all day!)
So the race didn’t start until 4:30 pm. I knew I didn’t want to eat much of anything, so my last meal was around 10 am and consisted of eggs, ham, and an english muffin. Nothing more until after the race.
So … the start::
I almost missed my corral. I was in the longest porto-potty line EVER! By the time I got out, they had just started Corral 1. I sprinted nearly 1/2 mile, dodging and weaving and about 100 “excuse me’s” through the masses of other runners and spectators. By the time I made it to the start, Corral 2 had already taken off and the runners were at least 300 feet down the road …. ACK!! So, I started … SOLO …. as Corral 3 was still being held back at the start line. hee hee … 🙂 Why not?
I quickly found my pace and held stead fast.
WHOA — wait …. what’s this?
Sideways, hard, pushing. UGH. This is not going to be fun. Stay focused I told myself. Get in behind others and keep moving forward. So, that’s what I did. I felt good during the entire race and enjoyed seeing the STRIP AT NIGHT! At about mile 8, I had 1/2 a gel, and I only took in a few sips of water. At mile nine, I was coming into the back side of Freemont and saw a spinning stiletto heel. ….. LOVE!
Turning back towards the Bellagio, total headwind, HARD, for the final 3 + miles. Everyone I tried to get behind was slowing way down, so I just pushed harder to catch someone else to run behind. I found a skinny dude and followed him for about 2 miles, until he stopped to walk. WHAT?! We are almost done!! I kept at it, pushing, knowing that I would PR. And, a PR, I did!!
Now for the nitty-gritty:
Yes – I did PR … but, I almost started crying when I finished. I looked down at my GARMIN, which showed I had an average pace of 7:45 and 13.23 miles in 1:42:44. How is my time not closer to a 1:40:00 ??? I was shooting for a 1:40:00. A 7:51 average pace should have given me a 1:40:00. What the heck?
I asked other runners what their Garmin’s read. Everyone I talked to said their Garmin’s showed 13.2 something. That’s it — the course was long!
Wait — it could haven’t been another 2 minutes. Still dumbfounded — I just couldn’t get past why I didn’t come closer to a 1:40:00, especially after running a solid 7:45 average pace. DANG!
I tried to brush it off as best as I could and feel great about my performance and my PR, but still …..
I met up with my old high school buddy, Eric, and his wife, Sharon, for a night of fun. Here is our after race photo:
It wasn’t until the next day that I found my training mistake ….
For whatever reason, my last few runs were at marathon pace, not at 1/2 marathon pace. So I had 7:51 stuck in my head, not 7:36 …
This, my friends, is what I call my DUMB ASS training moment #537
Overall — this was a fantastic race and I’m glad it was a solid effort and performance. No injuries – great running – and awesome friends to train with.
This is what I call SUCCESS!