Good morning everyone!!
Well here it is all the dirty details from the Las Vegas Marathon this past Sunday. LONG POST ALERT!!
First off I have to thank everyone who was there to support me and all the support I received from the blog and Facebook. As you will see, I didn’t have the best attitude after the race lol.
As you read late last week, our phones went off around 3am letting us know our flight was completely cancelled. Really?!?! We rescheduled and got into Vegas with no problems.
Because we were arriving on the same day as the race, we paid extra for race day packet pickup which started at 230pm. I could see the pre-race expo from our hotel room and around 130pm I could see a HUGE line starting to form to get into the expo. I started to freak out about not getting my bib in time so I threw some shoes on and walked across the street. I totally forgot that Kid Rock was playing at the expo so everyone was lining up to get a good spot at the concert. So I basically walked right in and out to get my race bib. Freak out diverted!
One HUGE drawback to this race was that Mrs. Schlub was running the 10K and I was running the marathon. This meant that our start lines were on complete opposite sides of the strip. So we said our goodbyes well before the race started which was not a comfortable feeling when you’re about to run your first marathon.
Trying to put that aside, I still had a race to run. I met my good friends down in the lobby about an hour before the race and we headed over together. Luckily they were running the half marathon so they were started in the same location as me which really helped my nerves. We all hung out together for a while until it was time for me to move up to my corral and get ready for the start.
The national anthem played via guitar similar to the Jimmy Hendrix rendition and we were off!!
The race was a classic tale of two halves. I started out pretty conservative to see how my legs felt and to work through the sea of people that did not belong in corrals 1-6 lol. First mile clicked off at 9:06 and I quickly found a few people to latch onto and pace me through the next few miles. My legs felt amazing!!! We were battling 20-30 mile per hour wind gusts and even had some steady rain through miles 8-10, but that had no impact on me whatsoever. I was in the zone; I was clicking off miles like crazy and picking off other runners with each step. Based on my running chip, I clicked off the 5K at 26:32 which is an 8:32 min/mile pace, clicked off the 10k at 52:22 which is an 8:26 min/mile pace, and knocked out the Half at 1:50:20 which is an 8:25 min/mile pace. A HUGE side note, this was my second fastest half marathon EVER and I just threw it down in my first marathon….WHAT?!?!?!
At this point in the race I was on cloud 9, I was in a great place mentally and was already planning my celebratory fist pump as I crossed the finish line well under 4 hours. Very very very premature of me!!!
Mile 14-16 was a small out and back which had a slight incline then decline as we head back to the strip. This is where disaster started to strike. I started to cramp up in both of my hamstrings. Each time the cramps hit, I would stop to stretch, then attempt to start jogging again. At one point the cramps had me on the verge of tears they were hurting so bad. I seriously thought my run was over, I thought I was going to sit there until race support could come out and get me. Ask Mrs. Schlub, I called her at one point and nothing she could say would put me at ease. The only thing I could manage was to walk, so I set off walking towards mile 20 and at that point I would re-evaluate based on how I felt. Then a savior in disguise came upon me. Around mile 18 I came across another runner, young man in his 20’s stretching on the sidewalk. As I passed I asked him how he was doing and he said he was cramping up in his quads really bad. He started to walk with me at that point and we were able to chat back and forth to the end of the race. Young man’s name was Bob and I don’t know what would have happened had Bob not been there by my side. Regardless, I’m very fortunate that he was there helping me to the end.
I crossed the finish line walking with a final time of 5:04:36. At the point I crossed the finish line I was so pissed off and upset that I wanted nothing to do with the celebration of finishing 26.2 miles. My legs felt like they were going to fall off and I was freezing my A#& off. I wanted my pants and jacket from gear check and some delicious food. Mrs. Schlub flagged me down through the fence blocking out the finish area as excited as could be congratulating me on the finish. I was a total JERK!! I basically told her I was upset and pissed off about what had happened and didn’t want to hear any congratulations.
After I got my warmer clothes, got my tech shirt, we headed off to meet up with our friends for dinner. Mrs. Schlub gave me a much needed scolding for being ungrateful for the ability to finish and the support from everyone on this accomplishment. I was a bit better after that and we had a great time with everyone while we were in Vegas.
So what’s next?? I am still pissed off about how things unfolded the second half of the race. I don’t know if I can pinpoint one specific item that led to the cramps but I am going to focus on hydration and fitness level. I’m not fueling my body properly and I need to get those long runs in so my body adapts to the punishment. I’m taking about a week off to let my legs recuperate and then I will get back at it, I don’t want to lose anything that I gained from this run. The RNR series comes to Arizona mid January so I want to run the half marathon for that event. I don’t like the course but they have a sweet secondary medal if you run Las Vegas and Phoenix so that sounds good to me. Then comes the redemption run, The Phoenix Marathon is at the end of February. Love the course and I think it’s the perfect race to come out and make up for the disaster that occurred in Vegas.
Thanks again to all of you that commented and wished me good luck. I really appreciate the support and of course a special thank you to Mrs. Schlub, she has to put up with all my training and all my nonsense…honestly the woman is a Saint for having to deal with me lol.