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Friday, December 30, 2011

Captain America

We're at home tonight.  I know at home on a Friday night, how did that happen?  Nikki went to a dance/party at Scandia with Sydney.  After all of the holiday eating, we wanted to stay home to have dinner.  But since I haven't been to the grocery store since before Christmas, the pickings were slim.  So pancakes and eggs it was!

Since we were all here we decided to watch a movie too.  It's increasingly hard to find a movie that both Stephen and Ali will watch.  We settled on Captain America (only with a bribe from Bill to rub Ali's back during the movie).  We're only about a third of the way through the movie so far, but it's much better than I'd expected.  Although I think I'm going to like the part before the "procedure" better than the after.  We'll see.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

RnR Las Vegas Recap

RnRLV-The infamous Las Vegas Half Marathon

This was to be my second half marathon and the first one I was to run with Nikki my 14 year old daughter.  She had run a 10k with me a few weeks before and struggled a little so I was just a bit concerned about her making the whole 13.1 miles.  I told her we'd just incorporate a few set walking breaks into our run. (I HATE to walk in my runs, but knew that it would probably help her get through it.)

So we went up Saturday and headed straight to the Expo.  It was too crazy to even find parking, so my husband dropped my daughter and I off and took off to find somewhere to wait.  We made our way through the expo and had a good experience.  No complaints there, we even easily changed our coral.  He didn't feel safe in the car though and wasn't happy to be left waiting for so long.

That night we had  a good pasta dinner with a group of friends that were running as well.  No drinking, and early to bed.  Next morning we headed out for pancakes and eggs.  Being a later race, we figured a good, big breakfast would be the right thing to do.  One pancake (big) and two scrambled eggs and a cup of coffee.  For my last meal, I just grabbed a wrap at Starbucks at the Mandalay Bay.  It was nice and light.

We said goodbye to Sarah when she headed out for the full!  Waited around until it was time for us to head out and find our coral.  We lined up, excited and ready to run.
Me, Lisa and Nikki!

The energy at the starting line was great!  It was cold, but not unbearable.  We were ready to get started though.

Finally we moved along and were released to start!  It was so exciting.  But that was the end of the excitement.  I felt just like cattle.  It was 4-5 miles before we were moving at even close to a 10 minute mile. (Generally I run about 8:45, but with my daughter was aiming for 9:30.)  So we were way behind target pace.  But the problem was trying to get around people.  It was dangerous.  We were weaving, running on the back side of water tables (thankfully not drinking from them!) and kept losing each other. Around mile 8 we saw a lady fall.  It was my biggest fear.  She got tripped up from another runner and landed on her hands and knees.  Luckily she was running with a guy who scooped her up and got her to the side.  I felt so bad for her, it had to have hurt!  But we kept running.  

Since we were so far behind our pace, we decided to skip the walking breaks I'd planned.  Between mile 8 and 9 I told my daughter I wanted her to eat some fuel and get some water.  So we each had a Stinger Waffle and grabbed a water at the water station.  It had finally thinned a little bit, but we were still having to jump into the full marathoners lane to pass people.  I couldn't believe it wasn't going to ever break free!  Around mile 12 was when my daughter spotted the naked runner!  
No that's just Nikki at the Expo!

We even found out later that my husband had given the naked guy a high five!  He said he was looking for us and giving people high fives and didn't realize he was naked until the last minute!  Only in Vegas!
I'm not sure where she found it, but the last three miles Nikki found a burst of energy.  I was surprised at how fast she was going, but wasn't going to be one to slow her down.  We crossed the finish line and came to a complete grid lock.  It was a mass of people that wasn't moving.  I knew we were going to start cooling off fast and I wanted to get her inside as quickly as possible.  Unfortunately there wasn't a quick way to move.  We had to just shuffle along with everyone else.  After about 20 minutes, we finally made it to get a "blanket".  It was definitely a matter of luck to grab the ones being thrown through the air.  But thankfully we each got one and were able to keep moving.  We took a short cut through the gates and headed into the hotel.  At this point, both of our stomachs started to hurt.  Nikki tried to go into a bathroom but the line was long.  The lady in front of her told her, "The line isn't moving because everyone is pooping."  She decided she couldn't stay there.   We decided to try to make it back to New York New York, where we were staying.  We walked to Luxor and tried to catch the tram there thinking it'd be faster.  It was outside though, so it was FREEZING.  When the tram pulled up, it was jam packed.  Bill told Nikki and I to just squeeze in and he'd walk back.  We did. And then two others tried to as well.  That pushed a lot of people over the edge since the doors wouldn't close.  People were freezing and wanting to move.  

We made it back to the hotel. Nikki went to the bathroom.  We found our other two kids and headed to the car.  As soon as I got to the car, I knew something was wrong with my stomach.  I've run plenty of runs at that length, so I knew it wasn't that.  I had been a little queasy all day and figured maybe I'd picked something up.  But Nikki was feeling really sick too.  I still just figured it was a bug or something.  Of course later after reading all of the posts, I realized it may have been something else.  I find it hard to believe that we would've gotten sick from drinking water at only one station.  But after seeing that volunteers weren't using gloves, I think it would've been very easy.  We were sick until Wednesday.  I couldn't eat anything until Tuesday.  (No recovery meal after the run at all) To me, it doesn't matter. That wasn't a run I'd enjoy doing again.  It was too expensive and WAY too crowded for me.  It was fun to run the strip at night, but not enough so that I'd ever do it again.

Our final time was 2:18.  I was very pleased with the time considering the crowds.  Beyond that, I was so proud of Nikki for getting out there and running it with me.  At fourteen years old, she can say she's run a half marathon and no one can ever take that from her!  I don't know if she'll ever run another one, but at least now she knows it's possible.

I decided to wait awhile before posting my recap of this race because I wanted to have some time to let the bad feelings subside.  It was a race I ran with friends and my daughter, and for that I will always have fond memories.