Thursday, December 6, 2012

Rock n' Roll Las Vegas Race Recap

RnR Las Vegas 2012 Race Recap:

Saturday 12/1/12

  • 4:10 - Arrived in Las Vegas and headed to the Vdara hotel
  • 6:00 ish - headed to the expo for packet pickup
  • The expo was pretty enormous. There were a lot of vendors there and among them was a company called WHOOHA. Here are the two shirts I got from them.  They are very comfortable.   


  • 7:00 (PST) - We're (us/we = Daniel, Sarah, Cesar, and me) starving by this point and it's kind of my fault because I got lost in the expo with all the stores.  We wanted pizza and amazingly enough couldn't find a decent place to sit down and get some.  We finally came across a California Pizza Kitchen.  We didn't get to eat until about 8:15. 
  • 9:30 (PST) - Made it back to hour hotel rooms and we were pooped.  So, no going out for any of us.
Sunday 12/2/12

  • Woke up around 7:00 AM because it was really like 10:00 for my body. 
  • 9:30 ish - met up with my brother, Marcus and his boyfriend, Myke for breakfast
    • We ended up at Serendipity 3 which had good food but not a very good selection for healthy eating options before you're about to run a marathon. 

 Yogurt with granola and fruit. Yogurt is in a half coconut shell.

  • We went back to our hotels after breakfast.  I read for about an hour and then I took an hour nap.  Woke up at 1:30 and started getting ready for the race.  Meet up time and place with Sarah was 2:00 in the hotel lobby
  • I had a Strawberry Honey Stinger in prep for the race.  3:00 was start time
On the course

For about the first mile the wind was at our backs.  Then we made a U-turn and it was right in our faces and felt like it was for pretty much the rest of the run.  The temp felt about the same the entire time on the course, even after the sun went down, right around 60.  It dropped to mid-40's, low-50's as I finished the race around 7PM, but I barely noticed because I get hot very easily. 

About the course:
The course was totally flat except for one 100yd dip that you hit around mile 10 and again when you come back around mile 20.  The wind was also against us at mile 10.  At least it felt like it.  The crosswinds even felt like they were head on.  So, trying to get up the steep incline with the wind zapped a lot of energy early.  Running down the strip going out and coming back is the most interesting part of the course besides running through Fremont St at night, which you hit around mile 22.  Everything was lit up and that's when the spectators started to show up again.  There wasn't a whole lot to see between miles 10 - 21 so it was kind of boring.

As I stated earlier I had the Honey Stinger before the race.  On the course I took a Gu every 5 miles until mile 15.  After that I started taking a Gu every 3 miles.  I took water at just about every stop and Gatorade every other mile after I took a Gu.  After I used the bathroom just before mile 10 I didn't have any GI problems for the rest of the race.  I didn't need to pee and I was even pretty good for the first hour after I was done.   

My experience:
Considering that the course was flat and it was a cool race, you would think that just about everyone would PR.  Well, that's not the case.  That wind was just as brutal as the hills in the Via of Leigh Valley marathon in Pennsylvania and the heat in any of the S. Florida races that I've done like Palm Beach marathon and ING Miami marathon.  Also, my breakfast choice wasn't the best.  I started off good, keeping a close to 8 min/mi pace up until mile 8, then it slowed to 8:10 for miles 8 and 9.  At this point, I had to use the bathroom.  So, I told Sarah to go on ahead.  It was pretty much down hill from there.  After I used the bathroom I felt a lot better, but my heart rate was so high. 
My average HR at mile 9 was 195.  I stopped to use the bathroom shortly before mile 10. 
Mile 10 my average pace was 11:04 and my average HR was 194

Mile 11 ave pace - 8:15, ave HR - 194

for miles 12 and 13, every time my HR got to 200 I would stop and walk until it came down to 190
Mile 12 ave pace - 8:46, ave HR - 196
Mile 13 ave pace - 8:56, ave HR - 197

for miles 14 and 15 I incorporated a run 2 min, walk 1 min strategy
Mile 14 ave pace - 10:04, ave HR - 192
Mile 15 ave pace 10:17, ave HR 193 - my pace is a little slower here because I walked through the aid station as well which was around mile 15.5

for miles 16 - 17 I ran 3 min, walked 1 min
Mile 16 - ave pace 10:57, ave HR - 189 - my pace is slower here because I walked through the aid station that was at mile 1.6
Mile 17 - ave pace 9:53, ave HR - 185

At mile 17 I was finally started to run steady and didn't need the walk breaks anymore
Mile 18 - ave pace 8:47, ave HR - 188.  I actually function pretty well with a HR this high.  Anything under 190 is sustainable for long periods of time for me.  It's when I get to 190+ that I know I won't last much longer at my current pace.

After two crises averted I thought I was in the clear for the remaining 8 miles.  But nope.  My right IT band started hurting during the early part of mile 19.  At mile 22 and 24 I took extra water to pour on my right leg.  The cold water helps with the IT pain. 
Mile 19 - ave pace 9:20, ave HR - 189
Mile 20 - ave pace 9:30, ave HR - 189
Mile 21 - ave pace 9:48, ave HR - 188
Mile 22 - ave pace 10:58, ave HR - 182
Mile 23 - ave pace 9:58, ave HR - 189
Mile 24 - ave pace 10:12, ave HR - 187

For the last mile and half I refused to stop running.  I wanted to get the race done with.  I also didn't want to be caught walking!  LOL. 
Mile 25 - ave pace 9:55, ave HR - 187
Mile 26 - ave pace 8:58, ave HR - 192
last .2 miles - ave pace 8:48, ave HR - 194

Overall: Average pace 9:09, ave HR 189, total time 4:01:05. 

Not my worst marathon, but not anywhere near my best.  Oh well.  I'm not worried or upset about it.  The experience was awesome.  I got to spend a few days in Vegas with great friends and family and I did get to run down Las Vegas Blvd.  It's pretty cool that they were able to close down the whole strip for the race.  The locals weren't very happy about it.  But, hey, it's only one day... half of a day  :). 

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