First off I’d like to thank Mizfit for this opportunity and for the help she gave in trying to find someone to run with me while I was in Las Vegas a month or so ago.
(MizFit note: It was tempting to hop a plane and run with Gene’ too (this was all pre-wrenching my back). Alas, I settled for begging for a guest post upon his return)
Although no one answered the call, her efforts were greatly appreciated! I am very happy to have bumped into her, if only in cyber-space.
A little back ground on me:
I am an RN working at a Veteran’s Hospital along the VT/NH border. I am married to my high school sweetheart, though we had an 18 year gap in our relationship. I have 2 step-sons, and we have one together. She has become my rock, my inspiration to be a better person, and has shown me forgiveness and acceptance that I never knew existed. I could go on and on, but this post is about running, so…..
I was unable to get a course map or even description from the RNR folks, but I (with the help of Adam) was able to locate a map from the 2009 event.
I can’t imagine that it would change much this year.
The course starts on the southbound side of the Strip, runs to what i imagined was the “welcome to Las Vegas” sign, then heads north.
While running NORTH, I noticed a very slight incline, but while headed south i didn’t notice it at all. if you are treadmilling at 1-2%, you’ll be set.
The road is a wide, 3 lane, mostly straight course, just like you see on TV.
While it will be very tempting to watch people on the street as you run by (as many of them will be watching YOU) save that enjoyment for AFTER the race, and concentrate on either finishing or a PR.
For me, this course has PR (current half marathon PR is 1:54:03) written ALL OVER IT (unless, of course, you stay up too late the night before…..)
At the northern end of the course, you get a little break from the glitz and glamor once you pass Wynn and Encore.
You’ll go past Riviera on your right (where my sister got married! woot!), then a break before the Stratosphere.
Here’s a caveat: the massive scale of things played horrible tricks on me.
When you are near Harrah’s and look north, you can see the Stratosphere, and it looks fairly close. it is nearly TWO MILES AWAY. Two. Miles.
Good thing is, though, by the time you reach it, you are almost at the turn around!
I ran the course in the wee small hours (3-4 am), so i didn’t actually run the neighbourhoods that were shown on the map.
Once you get past the Strat, things….change.
You can see the pawn shop from tv’s Pawn Stars on the right, and I think that you’ll loop around to the west (left) near there. No one knew I was out there, and even though i WAS wearing my ROAD ID, I didn’t feel comfortable running out there at that time of night.
When you cruise south, on your way back to the finish, it will seem that the hotels are just stacked on top of each other like a big clump of leggos.
Start to pick up your pace around Caesar’s Palace, and really kick it in when you get even with Planet Hollywood (which is on your left, at this point).
If you can, get there a day early to get a lay of the land.
Find out where the finish line is, and then walk backward (not actually BACKWARD, but….) along the course to find a good spot to start your final kick. keep in mind that the scale changes distance perception. Pay attention to splits and mile markers.
This was my first trip to LV, and I had no real prep for it.
I have travelled before, and have my routines, but wasn’t really prepared like I thought I was. Here are some other non-running things to keep in mind for the first timer:
1) it is EXPENSIVE to do anything except drink alcohol in Vegas. Coffee: 5 bucks. 3 foot tall Margarita, 24/7? 99 cents. Oh, and $5 Footlongs at Subway? NOT in Vegas.
2) there are only TWO running stores on the strip. Niketown and Adidas. Niketown is in the mall attached to Caesar’s (enter casino, turn right, keep going until you are in the mall. keep going, take left at big fountain, keeeeeeeep going.) Adidas is between Planet Hollywood and MGM Grand, same side, right on the Strip.
3) go out at night after 8, bring your camera, and just walk. you will see some amazing things. please take pictures. I took pictures of THINGS, and not people. I wish I had people pics.
4) enjoy the experience. i can be pretty…reserved…but had a good time watching people, laughing at and with strangers, and it was surprisingly enjoyable.
I look forward to reading about your experiences! Stop on by my blog leave me a comment with a link to your blog and I’ll put up an index of RNR LV Runners!
Keep on running!