Big Race Weekend

As I sit here on my couch this morning enjoying some hot coffee on a very cold day, my thoughts are with thousands of runners preparing for some pretty fantastic races this weekend.  Yep, I’m jealous!  Last year at this time I was waking up in Vegas taking in some down time getting ready for my marathon there.  This year, I’m working all weekend.  Not quite the same.

So to all of my running friends lining up at the following races this weekend, I wish you all the best!

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Todd, Angie, Brenda, Eddy, Scott, Emily, Annie and Fred (among others) – Stay strong, and envision that finish line.  You are all Rock stars!

Elvis is in the Building (and running)

If you are one of the lucky one’s, you are gearing up for an amazing running weekend in Las Vegas.  Just a few short days away, all of the glitz, glamour and compression socks await you!  Maybe even a medal, or two, or three.

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So, get ready!  Get your bags packed, and don’t forget your gambling money!  Las Vegas is one of my favorite places.  I’ve been countless times over the years, twice this year.  This weekend though, I will not be there.  I really have had an issue with jealousy these past few weeks leading up to this years event.  It is so much fun, I really hate the fact that I cannot participate this year.  Well, for one reason or another (namely trips to Salt Lake City and Chicago) the wallet couldn’t afford another trip.  Believe me, I thought about how I could make it work.  Best be frugal enough to race a few cool locations next year and save up.

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With Elvis in the building, or at least the spirit of Elvis, and about 200-300 look a likes running the Strip this weekend, you better just absorb all of it.  Do it for me!  I first ran this Rock ‘n’ Roll event back in 2011.  It was just my third Half Marathon, and being sick with bronchitis, my overall finish in 1,306th place was a triumph.  My finish time of 1:43:23 put me well ahead of the pack of 33,253 finishers.  That is a top 4% finish.  Interesting to note, the winner on the women’s side of that event was Amy Hastings.  My finish time allowed me to just eek out the post race carnage and bottle necking that made that race so noteworthy.  It’s the reason why the course was changed, the finisher village changed, and a lower cap instituted for runner safety.

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I skipped the event in 2012, but made an amazing return to Las Vegas in 2013 to run the Full Marathon.  I used that year (2012) to fine tune my distance running, and became a marathoner.  With six marathons under my belt, Las Vegas became my lucky #7 last year.  Everything about the race was epic.  From start to finish I loved it!  I finished in 315th place out of 2,927.  Top 10% this time and still awesome.  My time of 3:41:41, puts that finish as my fourth best marathon out of 16.  I guess the flat course, and excitement of Vegas helped.

So, as I sit here a bit dejected that I am missing the race this year, I have to make a plan to be there again.  Maybe in 2015.  I think that is the only thing that will help my jealousy issues right now.

To all of you heading to Las Vegas to run, let me live vicariously through you this weekend.  Have an incredible time, and just enjoy every neon-filled moment!

November Goals

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My my goals for this month are pretty simple….

Successful completion of two marathons in 14 days, and then relax through the end of the month, enjoying the holiday with family.  I will start ramping back up a bit on December for next year, but that’s another post altogether.

Full on taper mode has been a little tough, but I have to remind myself that the rest is good for me.  Coming off of my 5th month in a row with running at least 100 miles, the focus is now just on two races.

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My next marathon is on Sunday.  Just two short days away.  I am heading out to the expo in a few hours.  Bib #462 for my 7th marathon.  I will also be volunteering my time at the Expo at the Asheville Marathon at Biltmore Estate booth.  I am heading there to meet with the event director, and help spread the word locally about this one of a kind boutique marathon.  As an Ambassador for that event, it will be great to talk about the race with folks coming in to pick up their packets for the race this weekend.

Marathon #2, in Las Vegas is on November 17th, just two weeks from this Sunday.  I am looking forward to that race for a bunch of different reasons.  The challenge of two marathons in two weeks especially.  How will my body hold up?  I know I’ve put in the work, now it’s time for the payoff.

November – a month of new experiences, two new races, and one of the biggest challenges I’ve ever faced.  I am embracing November!