Team Vegas Rocked the Strip!

We did it! My entire team kicked butt on the Las Vegas Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon today!

We met as a team at 5:45 am in the food court area of the Mandalay Bay convention center. This gave us a warm, sheltered spot with flushing toilets to meet. We spent a little time making sure everyone had their numbers pinned on, timing tags on and just chatting.
Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon

Before heading out, we made sure to snap a picture of the coaches!

Team Vegas - Coaches for 2010 Las Vegas season
Coach Cristina, Coach Jimmy and Me!

We had a beautiful day for a race. No wind and the temperature was in the mid 40’s when we started.
Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon

I started the race toward the back of the very last corral. It took us 48 minutes to cross the start mats after the starting gun went off. Initially my plan was to start with the back of our pack and move forward through them, then cut over to see the front-runners. But as I got realizing it, I would probably be better off helping the Team Challenge walkers at the back. I could help pace them along and encourage them more than if I were to jump over and see the faster people.

Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon
Self-portrait!

My walkers started out having a lot of fun.
Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon

We passed by the opulence of Las Vegas:
Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon

We passed the OPPOSITE of opulence:
Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon

We passed the Old School Vegas, complete with running Elvi:
Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon

There was great encouragement from several Team Challenge cheer teams on the course:
Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon

By the end, my team was feeling tired but excited to accomplish something that was so huge:
Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Team Challenge/Team Vegas - 2010 Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon

Some special mentions:
– The woman who had breast cancer treatments earlier this year really pushed it and finished in under 4 hours, and even shed a few tears of joy at the finish line. (Prompting me to shed a few of my own!)
– The couple that held hands in the early trainings did the whole race together and came in under 4 hours too. I think they probably could have come in even faster, so maybe they’ll challenge themselves to do another one.
– The gal who is battling thyroid cancer finished the race with her mother, they were several people ahead of the sweepers. They gave me big hugs at the end, thanked the coaches for getting them through this and said, “We’re going to do this again next year!”
– Our fastest gal ran it in 1:45, and it was her very first half marathon. She’s got natural skill and I hope she continues doing this!
– Our fastest guy cramped up, missing his 1:35 time goal, but still hit 1:46. He was an amazing addition to the team, always cheerful and positive.

I have no idea if I’ll be in race photos or if I would be alerted to them since my bib said “COACH” on the front, no number. But if there are any photos of a moment on the course that I would like to see, it would be after we had seen all of our team complete the race, us three coaches went across the finish line together, with the biggest and dopiest smiles on our face.

Seriously, this is one of the best feelings in the world!

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12 comments

  1. Jill, I’m just wiping the tears from my eyes. I’m so glad to read the joy in this post. Nothing this good comes without a price, but it is so worth it. I am so impressed with the woman you have become, and I love sharing both the joys and the heart-ache with you. Love you tons!

    • Thanks Mom! You’re so right, it was a lot of hard work but it was 100% worth it. I’m so glad I can share the ups and downs with you and that I have such a great support from you! Love you too!

  2. Congrats to you and your team!! How exciting of them all 🙂 I’m sure you are just as elated for them and enjoying the benefits of enduring the past few months of group-runs (the days were it felt more like a chore than fun, I mean) Congrats to all!! Loved the pics – smiley half-marathoners!

    • You’re so right, it makes all of the training moments completely worth it. And there were times where it got tiring (especially without any break from last March until now) but being on the flipside of it now it feels amazing!

  3. I absolutely loved reading this!!!

    I am so happy to hear that this day was as amazing as you had hoped. Look at all the people you have inspiried. I think whenever you are down you need to come back to this post. You are amazing. I am so bummed I did not get to come out and run this race but it just wasnt in the cards for me this year. Hopefully I’ll get out there next year.

    Now, relax!

    • That is such a good idea, to refer back to this post for pick-me-ups whenever I need them… because it was soooooo amazing.

      I did think of you out there and wish that you had been able to come, but hopefully 2011 is the year for that! 🙂

  4. I know I speak for most of the Team when I say that we could never have accomplished so much with out such great support from our coaches! Thank you for such an amazing experience, I will never forget this. Can’t wait to get out there again with you guys!!

  5. Wow! Looks like you really had fun! Great photos, too! It’s really great looking at the photos of your fans while you’re running. It really keeps the fighting spirit soaring. Congrats and I really liked reading your story.

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