After 5 long months of training I finally made it. I completed the Las Vegas Rock N Roll Marathon. From the early morning wake ups, to the weekends sacrificed for long runs, it was all so worth it.
My family came out to support me and we stayed at the Wynn hotel right on the strip. It was an incredibly nice place to stay. The whole venue was really impressive for my first marathon. On Saturday before the race we went to the Expo and then a Cirque du Soleil show that night.
At the start line I have never been so pumped, nervous, or excited for an event. Walking into my corral and preparing to start the 26.2 mile journey seemed like an experience bigger than me. I kept thinking that I had done my homework. I had run all of my long runs, figured out what fluids and nutrition to take, and I knew my goal. I wanted to break 4:30.
There are some things I never will forget about that race. I remember the feeling of starting down the strip with THOUSANDS of spectators cheering us on, to heading out to the middle of nowhere in North Las Vegas where it was quiet and lonely.
At mile 16 I had a moment where I thought I was hitting the wall. My legs felt light and my head dizzy. After pounding an impromptu gu, and a pack of salt, I was able to get a second wind.
As we made our way back to the strip at mile 25 I had intense cramps and will never forget the help of fellow competitor. A guy stopped and said “Tell your body to f*** off! We have one mile left! Run it off”. At hearing this I had a huge shot of adrenaline and started sprinting with this man to the finish line.
At that point I saw my Mom, Dad, and little brother as I kicked to the finish line. I crossed the line at 4 hours and 19 minutes. Over ten minutes better than my goal of 4:30.
It’s bittersweet to be done with the marathon. It really did become a new way of life. I certainly will not stop running, or competing in events like this. I think I will run the half marathon in Austin this February, and then do the Cap Tex triathlon this summer.
I have to thank my family and friends for all of their support through this experience. I love you guys!