Wednesday, November 30, 2011

My History with the Las Vegas Marathon

As we approach this weekends race, I decided I wanted to take a trip down memory lane. I have a pretty good "relationship" With the Las Vegas Marathon. I have raced 6 full marathons beginning in 2004 and I wanted to do a short recap on each race.

In 2003 my husband wanted to run his first marathon with me. We picked the 2004 International Las Vegas Marathon. The race was held every January and even though it was the Las Vegas Marathon it was no where near the strip. The race started near the NV state line in Jean and it finished at Sunset Park. It was a windy and cold day. We were on 3:30 pace until the half. Then the wind beat us up and we hit "the wall" and we finished in 3:46 even.
In 2005 I ran the same race alone. It was a cold day. Back then I didn't know much about nutrition and fueling during the race. Most of my runs were during the winter months. I didn't feel thirsty so I hardly drank water or Gatorade during my runs I was hurting really bad towards the end and some nice man gave me an energy gel at mile 24. It made a world of difference. I finished in 3:45:12.

Later on that year Zappos took over the sponsorship of the race and "The New Las Vegas Marathon" was created. They totally changed the course and the month of the race.  They moved it from the end of January to the beginning of December. They also moved it to the strip to attract more runners. It worked and the race was a big success. This was a pretty stressful and busy time in my life. I was just starting my Junior year at UNLV and I had a full time job. (45+ hrs a week) I have no idea how I had time to train for a full marathon but , I did.  I finished the race 3:50:10. (No Picture available, we forgot the camera that day)

In 2006 I decided at the last minute not to participate in the race. I had finals the next morning and I needed to study. I also think I may have been too chicken to race that year.

In 2007 I ran this race with the hopes of qualifying for Boston. 3:40 or bust. I under dressed for this race and I froze my butt off! It was super windy and it was a heart breaker for me because I really wanted it this day. I was on pace until the 20 mile mark and I fell apart the last 6 miles. Three miles from the finish I had my running buddy pull me in. She watched me cry during those final miles. I finished 3:44:35
Las Vegas Marathon 07 (26.2 Miles) Dolly & Debbie in Christmas Party by Dolly Contreras

 2008 was a much better year. I came into this race well trained and well rested. The weather was also perfect for once! The temps were in the low 50's and there was hardly a breeze. I told myself to hold back in the early miles and it worked. I remember hitting mile 15 and feeling great! I hit mile 20 and I felt great. Mile 23 is when the race became difficult.  I finished 3:35:15 and this was the first time I qualified for Boston on the LV course. 
LV Marathon 2008 I had a kick ass day! in My Photos by Dolly Contreras

2009 was the last time I raced the full in Las Vegas. Rock n Roll had just taken over organizing this race. I really like the Rock n Roll race series. They are a for profit running company so, their races are on the expensive side.  But, you get what you pay for: a nice technical tee, a wave start, nice goody bag, a well organized expo, and a really well organized race. It was a cold morning, 31 degrees at the start brrr. However there was no wind and I felt good going into this race. I ran a personal best 3:31:49

In 2010 I was way big pregnant. There was no way I would attempt to run this.

This weekend will be the first time I run the half marathon in Las Vegas. If I had more time to train I would be running the full. Maybe next year.

1 comment:

  1. 1st big race post-pregnancy!? How exciting! Glad you are sticking to the half this year. Half's are the best (IMO). You should be crowned the president of the Las Vegas races with how you have dominated that course over the years