Friday, December 10, 2010

Nothin' But A Good Time

Another half marathon in the books.

If you've ever run in a Rock 'n' Roll series event, the expos are pretty much all the same. This year we arrived on Saturday instead of Friday, and other than the t-shirt, the swag wasn't that great. Friday swag is usually better than it is on Saturday. Of course, I wasn't there for the swag or to cruise the expo, which was inconveniently moved from last year's location of Mandalay Bay to The Sands. This new location made for an unnecessary trek up Las Vegas Strip to retrieve our race numbers. We wasted a lot of time getting from point A to point B, especially since we had no direct transportation and did not want to use a taxi just to get to the expo since we were trying to watch our expenses. So much for resting up before the run.

We didn't get any exciting or blog-worthy photos of the expo or of our carb load dinner with a few of the RU group. A few of us dined at Chin-Chin (Asian) located in New York, New York.

Race day. A 4:30 wake up was on the agenda. Luckily we had the foresight to purchase a couple of coffees from Starbucks the night before and put them on ice to have with breakfast (biscotti) the next morning. Iced soy latte actually tastes great. 5:30 am rolls around and we're just a tad late meeting the Rehab United group for the warm up and stretch, but we were there just in time to get in something before heading out to gear check.

The Rehab United Run Fit group.  I forgot my mustache.

Waiting at the start. Cher sang the national anthem. We could hear her but never saw her.

Me & Hubs. I'm not much of a beer drinker, but after running it was pretty good. Hubs came in at 2:38, a PR, finally under 2:40.

My shins and ankle were a little sore for the race, and I really started feeling those sore spots at about mile 7, and that's where I slowed down. My official half marathon personal record time is 2:13:11, and my unofficial half marathon time is about 2:02, which was a training run, just months before the broken femur back in 2008. I knew I would come nowhere close to those times. I just wanted to do better than last year's time of 2:29 and change, and I did. I'm satisfied with 2:25, considering the broken foot and shin splints this year.

One bonus to this years run is that it wasn't freezing.  Early morning temps were probably in the mid 40s, and probably rose to the mid 50s by the time we finished running.  It was perfect running weather.  By the time the concert started, I'd venture to guess that it was about 60.  Last year the cold kept people from staying in the post-run concert area.  This year it was packed, but it could have been that Brett Michael's Band was the featured band.

The hat. 

Brett getting the crowd going.  This guy just doesn't stop.

Can  you say "animated?"  We got a kick out of watching this guitar player. 

Even with the thousands of people at the post race area, we did not see anyone we knew from our group or otherwise, even though they were all there, somewhere.

One advantage to attending the expo is that we picked up red rubber wristbands, which gave us free admission to XS, a club located at The Wynn hotel. This club was pretty swanky.

Part of the deal was free drinks from 7pm to 8 pm. After that, the prices skyrocketed.

During the race I kept looking for Dawn. Last year I found her on the marathon course around mile 6 as I was running.  This year I never saw her, and kept thinking I'd see her at the post race concert, but never did.  While Hubs and I were hanging around at XS, talking to Tobie (who we just met -she ran the marathon), Dawn walks right in front of us. 

Dawn, me, Tobie.

Hmmmm... Extra hands? Dawn?  LOL.

Michael bustin' a move with Tobie and Dawn.

Hubs making friends...

After a few hours at XS, we were done.  We never saw any one from RU, even though they said they were there, but we did bump into a few running buddies from the San Diego Track club.  For some odd reason there are no pictures of our track club friends.  I only had a couple of drinks, but I was done.  I think the lack of sleep contributed to my "tipsy" state. Wearing 4" heels didn't help matters, either.

When it was all said and done, we had a pretty good time, even though we spent the entire time in Las Vegas on very little sleep.  By Monday morning I was ready to go home.

Yeah, I was done.

I'll be taking a running hiatus for the next two to three weeks, but I'll be doing a lot of hill walking.  I'll start up again after the hiatus because the Carlsbad half marathon is in January.  No rest for the weary.

Yesterday's Song:
Mystery Achievement - The Pretenders



Anne said...

Congrats to the both of you! Sounds like a great time. I love your club XS dress :) ...lookin' good!

Meg said...

Gosh, Carlsbad is just around the corner, I'd forgotten!
It looks like you had a fun trip and great job on reaching your time goal. You went through a lot last year, I can tell you're happy to be back!
Hubs likes Las Vegas, no?
Great pictures!

Lisa said...

i'm exhausted just reading about your las vegas experience!

Aka Alice said...

Congrats Girl! I stalked you on race day and saw your time. I knew you'd be just OK with it, but I know what your fall has been like, so I say "you rocked it!"

LOL at Michael and the Wynn girls...

I hear that next year the race may be at night on the strip...THAT would be a hoot!

Chris K said...

You clean up pretty nicely Irene. Nice dress at the club.

Joyce said...

After seeing this, Las Vegas is on my list of races to run. :) Rest up so that you can start training again for January. I know the feeling, though - taking a break does seem a little strange.

Black Knight said...

Hubby knows how choosing the friends!
Congrats to both of you on the half. Great pictures.
Anyway I have 2 log books with 2 different kind of records: before and after the fractures.

Anne said...

Congratulations to Michael on his PR and to you for a good performance given all your body's been through this year. And, I'm just guessing, but is the title a Bret Michaels' or Poison song?

Pink Granite said...

I love the way you always seem to be living life to the fullest!
Go you!!!
- Lee

Nitmos said...

Brett Michaels! Every time I see that guy I wonder where Slaughter is...don't know why.

Lisa said...

It sounds like a great time (although I was tired just reading I definitely want to run that race someday. I am so glad it wasn't as cold as last year. look fantastic!