Revel Mt. Charleston Race Discount 2018

You guessed it!  Registration is about to open on the 3rd Annual Revel Mt. Charleston Marathon & Half in Las Vegas, Nevada.  Beginning 5/11/17, registration opens, and will be the lowest price for this race.  (It can, and will) sell out incredibly fast.

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I’ve read article after article since Boston last month, stating that Revel Mt. Charleston qualified more runners for the 2017 Boston Marathon than any other race this past year.  It’s real, my friends.  The course is amazingly beautiful, and incredibly fast!  There is a 5,126 ft descent in the Full, and just over 2,000 ft of descent in the Half.

You’ve got to sign up early to enjoy the lowest pricing, and I feel you want a discount on top of that, just sign up on my team.  My team is open to anyone.  This isn’t a team where we need to run together, or even know each other, it’s just a way for us all to enjoy a discount.  So, when registering, just click on the button “join a team” and enter team name “Chasing Boston” into the search field.  Simple!

Race date for 2018 is April 28th.

I ran this years race about a week ago, so I can tell you first hand, train on some downhills.  This race will hurt you in places you never dreamed possible, if you’re not prepared.  I was gunning for a Boston Qualifier, and although I came short, I ran my fastest marathon in three and a half years.  If you train right, you will PR, you will BQ.  Tons of folks do, and I plan on it next year, after some more appropriate training.

 

If you’re a fan of FAST, you’ve got to run this race.

So, here’s the breakdown…..  joining my team saves you $5 off current registration fees.  “Like” them on Facebook during the checkout process, and that will save you an additional $5.

Sound amazing?  It is, and will be again next year!  After all, it’s Vegas Baby!  It’s beautiful, fast, and your golden ticket to Boston!

Revel Mt. Charleston Discount 2017

***Same team name for 2018 race!  Same discounts apply***

“Chasing Boston”

 

Time to jump on the bandwagon to Las Vegas!  Registration is open for the Revel Mt. Charleston Marathon & Half for 2017!

Hurray for the new date, which is not on Mothers Day weekend this time around!  The date for 2017 is April 29th.  This downhill race will surely help you reach a goal of qualifying for Boston, hence my team name.  “Chasing Boston”.

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My my team is open to anyone.  Want to run the Half?  Register on team Chasing Boston, and save $5 off current registration rates, and “like” them on Facebook during checkout for another $5 off.  Same goes for those wanting to run the Full!  This isn’t a team where we need to run together, or even know each other, it’s just a way for us all to enjoy a discount.  So, when you’re registering, just click on the button “join a team” and enter my team name Chasing Boston into the search field.  Simple.

I couldn’t attend the race this year because I am in the middle of moving, but I’m already looking forward to next year!  Everything I’ve heard about this years race was epic.  Great reviews all around.

See you in Vegas, baby!

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Discount for Revel Mt. Charleston Marathon

It’s hard to believe that the Revel Racing Series could find another perfect location for a downhill marathon and half, but they have done it!

Nestled just north of Las Vegas, NV (my favorite place btw), this coming May 7, 2016 will be the inaugural running of Revel Mt. Charleston.  Get excited!  Another reason to visit Las Vegas!

You can read all of the details on their website.  https://www.runrevel.com.

The main thing is to register while prices are at their lowest.  Under $100 right now til the end of January.  I created a team for the race, which means you can save another $5 if you join, and then another $5 if you “like” them on Facebook during the checkout process.

My team name is Chasing Boston, so search for that name while registering, and you instantly get the discount.  You can run the Half or Full and still be on my team, so choose wisely.  See you in Vegas, baby!

Revel Rockies 2016 Discount

Act now using code “ROCKIES16” to save $10 off the cheapest prices for next years race.  This code expires at the end of the day on 9/30/15.

Using that code, plus the $5 discount for “liking them” on Facebook during checkout, equates to $15 of savings…..

But wait!  I’ve created a team “Chasing Boston” for the event.  If you join my team during registration, you’ll save another $5.

Just click “Join A Team”, and enter that name.  This race is not a relay, nor do we have to run in a group, or even have to know each other.  It’s simply a way for us all to save some dough when we sign up.

Don’t worry, if you miss the deadline on 9/30/15, you can still sign up on my team anytime before race day 2016 and still save $5 off of current registration prices when you sign up.

See?  Simple…  Let’s save some money and go for Boston at the Rockies race next June.

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2016 Revel Big Cottonwood Discount

Registration is already open for Big Cottonwood Marathon & Half for 2016.  Talk about a jump start!  The 2015 race was just a few weeks ago.  They open it early so that folks can plan in advance, and get in on the lowest pricing.

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With that being said, current pricing is as follows, and will stay at this price until 4/12/16.

Half Marathon $79.95

Full Marathon $99.95

My plan is to head back to Utah for this race in 2016 (since it’s one of my absolute favorites) and have created a team that you can join for an even lower price.  Joining my team gets you an additional $5 off current pricing, and if you “Like” them on Facebook during checkout they offer another $5 off.

My team name is “Chasing Boston”, so when registering, just choose “join a team”, and enter that name.  We don’t have to run together, but we can save money together, right?  This past race I had over 20 people join my team, all saving money along the way.

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The Big Cottonwood course is a fast, downhill race that qualifies tons of folks every year for Boston, hence the team name I chose.  So?  What are you waiting for?  Join in on the fun in Salt Lake City.  You may even see a moose or two during your race down Cottonwood Canyon.

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Revel Rockies Marathon – Race Recap

Time to summon the beast within, it’s marathon morning.  It’s BQ attempt morning!

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As I rolled out of bed before 2am, I think I had myself talked out of a great race before my first cup of coffee was even brewed.  I tried and tried to get my head in the game early on that morning, but something just didn’t feel right.  Most of the time when I awake on the morning of a race, I start visualizing.  I start feeling that energy.  I get my game face on.  So here begins the struggle within.

I’m not sure if it was the pressure that I put on myself was what was taking a toll or not.  I think I was feeling just some overall exhaustion, too.  I just didn’t feel 100%.  You know, it takes feeling 110% to run your best marathon.  I think it was probably a combination of the two.

I knew, and posted about this previously, that I was really taking a lot on by scheduling myself such a whirlwind trip to Colorado to begin with.  I couldn’t leave well enough alone.  I couldn’t just be satisfied running one race (a marathon), I just had to go and schedule a second one.  Looking back on it, more than likely it did me in.  Oops, I’m giving away the ending already aren’t I?  Well, it’s probably no surprise, but I didn’t get my BQ on Sunday at the Rockies Marathon.  There, I said it.  I’ve admitted it.  Now I have to own up to it.  Here is what happened, and it may or may not have had anything to do with flying for four hours on Friday, then driving for four plus hours right afterward.  Going to bed at 2am, getting up and pacing a Half Marathon on Saturday morning.  Driving another four hours back to Denver….  Yes, it kinda goes something like that.  My hips hurt, my feet didn’t.  My hips rarely hurt.  My ass hurt.  I just drove 8 hours, and flew for 4 right before a marathon.  A BQ attempt.  DUH!

And so it began…  With a drive to Bandimere Speedway in Morrison from my hotel in Westminster at like 3:30am.  Total darkness, about a 20 minute drive.  Smooth, right?  No one else on the roads except for other runners heading to the same place.  Simple.  Well, you would think.  It was completely simple until I got to the exit for the Speedway.  Headlights streaming into view from the other direction, lined up for what seemed like miles.  I was on the easy side though, with just a right hand turn off the exit, and another quick right into the parking lot.  It was dark.  There were too many cars trying to merge into one lane.  It took far too long.  It added stress, that just didn’t need to be burdened on a marathon runner before the big race.  As I past into the parking area, there were two buses on the side of the road.  One was being looked at by a mechanic.  PANIC!  See?  Those words rhyme.

I finally parked.  Still with plenty of time to catch the marathon buses.  You see, the marathon and half marathon had different times to load onto buses since the races started in two different locations at two different times.  We started earlier.  6am, to be exact.  At an elevation of over 10,000 ft.  This meant we had about a half hour bus ride.  No portopotties that I saw in the parking area, but still plenty of darkness.  I say I’m sorry to that 2004 Pontiac Grand Prix that may have gotten accidentally splashed with urine.  Sorry, really.  I got into what seemed to be a three tiered line for the marathon buses which were already going.  Within about 5 minutes I was loading onto a bus which clearly was going to reach maximum capacity before I could find a seat.  Note to bus driver…. Count passengers as they load.  If the bus has room for 65 passengers, count to 65, and then tell the next person the bus is full before they get on,  argh!  Of course this didn’t happen, and I am on the bus with about ten other people, all standing there realizing there are no seats.  We all had to get off, and of course, lose our place in the bus line.  Ok, don’t get me started!  I just tried to roll with it.  I got into the line again.  And we waited, and waited, and waited.

Once another bus finally showed up, I found a seat next to a woman who was also going for a BQ.  We chatted away in the darkness.  Eating oatmeal bars, and hydrating.  We had a great conversation.  I told her I had paced in Aspen the day before.  She said, oh, I know a woman named Jill that paced up there, too.  Lol, yeah, same Jill I drove to the start in Aspen.  Small world.

After a long and winding journey up into the mountains, we arrived.  We arrived at about 5:30am.  Just barely getting light out.  The sun was rising.  It was chilly.  About 45 degrees.  I made my way to the table to grab some throw away gloves and a Mylar blanket.  A perfect race amenity that surely was needed on a chilly morning way up high in the Rockies.  This is what I saw.

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Views abounded through the pines.  I knew right then that this was going to be a masterfully beautiful run.  I took these photos on my cell phone, and aren’t the best quality, but you get the picture.

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I stretched, and took in the mountain air.  With a slight delay of ten minutes while we waited for the last bus to arrive, I shook out my legs, my nerves, my bladder.

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We lined up, got my Garmin set and soon I was running.

I ran free.  With abandon.  I felt good.  Wasn’t feeling my sore hips.  Was breathing great considering the altitude, was developing a nice fast pace.  For me, that is.  A pace I knew I needed on the downhill.  Not too much, but just enough.  Comfortable.  I never felt I was going too fast.  I had overheard a runner at the expo talk about three uphill sections later in the course that would be a test.  I tried to plan for them both mentally and physically.  I didn’t want to pour on too much sauce too early.  Been there, done that.

The miles ticked by.  Taking in the views of the sunrise, the gorgeous mountains in the distance, the fresh air.  I was happy.  I felt good.  I enjoyed myself.  I was going after my BQ, and things felt better than I though they would.  I was positive and smiling.  My pace was great.  Five miles in at about 7:25 overall.  Not too fast like Big Cottonwood last year, I told myself.  Keep it even.  Stay focused.

8 miles in…. 7:35 pace.  Perfect, I thought.  I was feeling good.  As the course continued it’s downward path, I enjoyed every bit of it.  I spent a bunch of those miles hanging out with, and swapping positions on the road with this woman.  She had Boston in mind, too.  Luckily a photog on the course caught us in a happy moment.

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She didn’t get her BQ either, and I never saw her again when we hit one of the hills on the course.  Thanks for keeping me company Denise!  Hope to see you in Boston one day!

Somewhere between miles 10 and 12, it happened.  BQ hopes and dreams went up in smoke.  I felt the first twinge.  Then another.  Then another, and another.  My calves were starting to give me trouble.  They finally set in, and pretty much out of nowhere.  Cramps that were just debilitating.  The kind of cramps that set you off the side of the road, in pain.  Waiting for the pain to subside.  Massaging it away, willing it to go away.  Stay away!

They didn’t.  Unlike any other race prior.  Mind you, this was my 20th marathon.  For the next 10 miles I struggled with these damn cramps.  Off and on.  On and off.  Terrible.  I struggled not only with those, but also the voice inside me saying “it’s over”.  It was over.  I knew it.  When the cramps didn’t go away after a few bouts, I knew it was over.  Ok, wrap your head around just doing the best you can.  I tried to make the most of it.  Hell, I even took some pictures when I was trying to walk out a cramp.  At least I had great scenery.

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The cramps were relentless.  I adjusted my stops at aid stations.  Trying just water, trying just Gatorade, trying a combination.  Eating a banana.  Well, bottom line is that they lasted easily ten miles, the most irritating ten miles I think I’ve ever run.  Irritating because of all of the starts and stops.  Knowing my time was slipping further and further and further away from my goal.  It was just excruciating.  The agony of defeat.  A bitter pill, for sure.

As my time slowed to a nonsensical pace at times, it took everything I had not to cry out of pure frustration.  Was it the altitude?  How was I dehydrated?  Did I overwork myself the day prior?  Why in the hell was I cramping like this today?  The day I was going after my BQ?  Why?  Bite the bullet and run when you can.  Try to salvage what you can.  I convinced myself that I would not give up, that I would still give it all I had.  What?  Now my nipple was bleeding?  Bloody hell!  What now?  I did my best to cover the suspect at photo spots on course.  What’s worse than free photos with bloody nipples?

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I tried to paste on a smile.  Every now and then.

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Sometimes it worked, other times, well, not so much.

But guess what?  This guy doesn’t give up!  I don’t quit, and I make the most of what’s given to me.  And I’ll be damned, I ran that final three miles and never stopped.  Sure, I struggled for what seemed like an eternity.  But you know what?  I didn’t stop.  I will never stop.  I won’t stop.  Nope.  I know it will take the perfect race for me to get to Boston, but it will happen.  One day.

I made it to the finish on Sunday.  I ran with pride into the town of Morrison.  Not a soul passed me the final three miles of that race.  The cramps subsided, and I made the most of it.  I may not have scorched the finish line that day, but I ran my way to my best marathon finish of the year, despite the trouble I had.  It goes to show that part of my race was good anyway.

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I crossed the finish line in 3:46:46.  Tired, but holding on.  Marveling in another marathon finish, really, what can I not be proud of?  Sure, I didn’t get that BQ I had hoped for, but I still finished strong.  My calves did me in that day, but so hard to complain.  I made it to the finish, in one piece.  Breathing, alive, and mostly happy.  It would take a few minutes for the sting to wear off, but it did.  Looking back on it now, I wish I had a second chance.  That is such the perfect course for a BQ.  I know in my heart that if I hadn’t dealt with cramping issues that day, I could have done it.  It just wasn’t meant to be that day.  But, there will be more opportunities.  That is what I love about our sport.  The opportunity is there tomorrow, if you want to redeem yourself.  Really, the opportunities are endless.

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When I had a chance to sit in the grass afterward with this ginormous medal around my neck, my thoughts turned to this…. Where to next?

The Long and Winding Road

It just occurred to me.  My trip to Denver this past weekend could easily fill about five blog posts.  The trip out there alone could have been one post, but I chose to abbreviate it to just the hightlights and combine it with my first race recap.  It certainly was an epic first day!

From the time my plane took off in Raleigh until I had finished a Half Marathon in Aspen, the time span was a mere 17.5 hours. Crazy!  It was all worth it though.  Nearly four hours on the plane, four to five hours in the car, three hours of sleep and a race.

Ok, deep breath.  Moving on.  Like I said in my previous post, I had an expo to get to four hours away, so hanging out after the race for more than an hour was really unrealistic. Since I had come into town the night before along a different route, I wanted to take the shorter route back to the Denver area.  This meant driving from the race finish in Basalt, through Aspen and on through Independence Pass.

Once I started driving this route it became abundantly clear to me that I was actually glad that I hadn’t tried to drive this route the night before.  It was a winding road to say the least.  It was incredibly high up in the mountains, and barely one lane in spots.  It WAS beautiful though, just incredible.

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Little did I know that I would be driving along The Continental Divide.  I guess I really haven’t given much thought to what the Divide really is, so I’ve had to read up on it.  Yes, there is still snow up there.  I didn’t stop to take many pictures, but what a great place to do some sightseeing, hiking and even rock climbing.  I saw a ton of folks doing each of those things.

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The Continental Divide- the principle, and largely mountainous, hydrological divide of the Americas.  The Continental Divide extends from the Bering Straight to the Straight of Magellan, and separates the watersheds that drain into the Pacific Ocean from those river systems that drain into the Atlantic Ocean.

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It was an amazing drive!  I still can’t believe the elevation of over 12,000 ft.  Maybe that’s why my ears kept popping.  Eventually my route took me back down through the Rockies and on into the Denver area.  I desperately needed a shower, so finding my hotel was the first order of business.

I stayed in Westminster, CO, about a 25 minute drive from the Revel Rockies race expo in Golden, and about the same distance to where I needed to catch the race buses in the morning in Morrison.  After a quick shower and a few minutes to relax I got back in the car and proceeded to the expo.  I completely forgot to take one single picture at the expo, but it was easy to find, and laid out perfectly.  There weren’t a whole lot of vendors at all, so after grabbing my bib, bag and shirts, off I went back to the hotel for some much needed rest.

Although there were many options for group dinners with other ambassadors, run groups, etc., I was so overtired, I just needed some quiet time, and an early bedtime even more.  I grabbed some food from a local restaurant and ate it in my hotel room.  Starting to fade very early in the evening, I mapped out my drive for the morning, got my gear ready to go, and set a very, very early alarm.  Like, isn’t 1:50am a bit too early?  Well, with needing to be at the parking lot for the busses leaving for the marathon between 3:30-4:15am, I felt this would be best.  I think I was fast asleep by 9:30pm.  Wish it had been even earlier.

I’ll end this post with a photo of my team and race shirt.

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Race Day post coming soon…….