Race Review: Rock n Roll Las Vegas

Disclaimer: I received a free entry to Rock n Roll Las Vegas  as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

I’ve had my eye on Rock n Roll Vegas for quite some time, so when the chance came to finally run it, I jumped at it. I also needed to get Nevada off my need to run states for the half marathon list. A whole host of Bibrave pros ended up being in town for the race, which made things a whole lot more fun.

I arrived Friday night from Tucson and checked in at the Westin on the Vegas Strip. When I walked in, I noticed a sign set up for a shake out rune for runners staying at the hotel with the Run Concierge

I caught some dinner after walking around a bit and then ended up calling it a night. I was still dealing with the falling back an hour and ended up only sleeping until 630 or so. I found some breakfast and then headed to the expo at the Convention Center. It opened at 9 AM on Saturday (though it was also open Thursday and Friday as well). You had to have a confirmation for every race you ran that was signed and only you could bring it, no one else could pick up your bib for you. If you did the 5K on Saturday in addition to a Sunday race, you were given a wrist band to show at the finish of your Sunday race for extra bling.

I wandered around the expo and found some Nike gear that was 40% off. And some Garmin. All the Garmin ($100 off the Fenix 5 Series, just saying). I rarely get gear, but I found a fun t-shirt I ended up getting, that was slightly edited:

A slight alteration to my shirt from the expo. #runner #weightlifter #twoproblems

A post shared by Christine (@cginpnw) on

I went back to the hotel and watched the OSU-MSU game before finding some lunch, wondering Caesar’s Palace and running the 5K on Saturday. Wondering about the 5K? Head over here and check it out.

The headliner concert with The Goo Goo Dolls was suppose to be Sunday, but given the shooting last month, it was changed to Saturday after the 5K. I hung around until about 8 before heading back for dinner and a shower. What can I say, cold and hungry won!

Sunday I was up bright and early. I ended up heading to church and then met up with fellow Bibrave Pros Justin, Jeannine, Mai, Fallon and Allison for Brunch at Spice Market in the Planet Hollywood Hotel and Casino. We were there a good 90 minutes before we all left to get ready for the race. Let me tell ya, an afternoon race really throws off when you eat, that’s for sure!

The race started in front of New York, New York, a change from last year. You were also put into 1 of 3 bib colors- blue, green and yellow. Within each bib color was a corral. There were 3 waves based off bib colors that were sent off every 30 min or so with each corral opening for a set period of time. If you’ve ever run the NYC Marathon and there wave system, thats what they were going for. To say the corrals were a bit of a hot mess is a bit of an understatement. You were elbow to elbow and it was beyond hard to get in. There were only 2 entry points and they were checking bib colors and corrals. They really needed to have more entry points. I appreciate the security, but it was almost equally unsafe trying to get in. Once you were in, you couldn’t leave, which meant if you had to go to the bathroom, you were SOL.

I was in the blue corral, which had all the marathoners and some half marathoners in it. I was in corral 11 so we ended up being in the 3rd wave of people in the blue corral. Things did thin out, and you weren’t elbow to elbow with people, but there was a lot of trying to get around people, which meant more tangents. About 1.5 miles in I took a bathroom stop because there was no way 13 miles was happening with a full bladder. The first 2.5 miles were dedicated to the Vegas shooting victims. It went by Mandalay Bay, the Welcome to Las Vegas sign on the way out and back, which made for some good photo ops. The 5K mark came quick and then somewhere between 3-5 miles, we past the start, where they were still sending off runners in the yellow wave. We were heading down the strip, past Paris, Planet Hollywood and MGM. As we were passing the finish, the half marathon winner was crossing the finish. Holy fastness

We got further out on the strip, past the Las Vegas Festival Grounds and the furthest part of the strip before heading back towards the center of Vegas. Everything we saw on the way out we saw on the way back, which was nice. Around mile 11, the marathoners split from us and went their separate ways, as we continued on towards the MGM. When you crossed the finish, you were about a mile from where we started. You got your medal and kept walking down towards food, medical, chocolate milk and the finishers area. It seemed like a decent amount of time between when you finished to when you exited. At the very end was beer for anyone interested. In the finishers area, there was merchandise, the VIP area, extra bling (read Heavy Medal and Remix Medal) pick up and more. I hung around a little bit before heading back to the hotel for a shower and then to find dinner. When I came back out to find food, the finish line was picking up with more p people and was getting more congested with finishers, so I was glad I finished when I did.

In terms of nutrition, there was water stops every 1.5 miles or so. Every once and awhile, there was gatorade, but not enough in my opinion. There was maybe 1 station with gels/chews for the half. There wasn’t any food on course which was a downside

Overall Pros for the course

  • Flat Course
  • good amount of energy
  • A definite bucket list race
  • Plenty of crowd and medical support
  • Good amount of bands

Overall Cons

  • Price is huge. In June/July, the half was $149.99. If you sign up as part of preregistration, the lowest you get is $99
  • Time of the start. The afternoon start time really throws off eating/meals
  • The start/corrals. There needed to be more entry points into the corrals because people were walking all over each other
  • Pre/post race bananas were old and mush like and weren’t worth eating
  • The amount of people. It was so crowded at times!

As much fun as the race was, I think I’m leaving it as a bucket list race and calling it good.

Did you run? Don’t forget to go to Bibrave to review it!

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Rock n Roll Vegas: It’s Race Week!

Disclaimer: I received a free entry to Rock n Roll Las Vegas as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

It’s race week for Rock n Roll Vegas and pretty soon we get to descend on the Las Vegas Strip! First time running? Take a look at what RnR posted in the last week or so to get an idea of where you’re running, though know there’s some changes that aren’t reflected due to late changes

Here’s some need to know info:

Security: Expect to see some increased security given recent events over race weekend. If you’re running this weekend, only runners will be allowed in the Start Village. Be sure if you’re checking bags, that it’s a clear bag given to you at the Expo!

Expo:

  1. Need to pick up your own bib(s) for any race you’re doing! No one can do it for you
  2. Make sure you bring your confirmation sheet and ID!
  3. Expo Takes Place at the Las Vegas Convention Center
    • Thursday, Nov 9 from 3-7 PM
    • Friday, Nov 10 from 11-6 PM
    • Saturday, Nov 11, from 9-7 PM
  4. Get your Runner Perks wrist band at the expo (look for the red balloon!)

Head Liner Concert

  • Goo Goo Dolls are still performing, only their concert is now Saturday, November 11 after the 5K
  • Show goes down at the Las Vegas Festival Grounds with March Fourth performing at 5 and 615 and the Goo Goo Dolls Performing at 715

All The Races

  1. Keep in mind there’s the Marathon, Half Marathon and 10K on Nov 12 and the 5K on Nov 11
  2. For Full information, here’s race details for each
  3. Check out the race weekend website for more information regarding road closures, race day maps, course details

See you in Vegas!

Rock N Roll Las Vegas: Things to Know

Disclaimer: I received a free entry to Rock n Roll Las Vegas as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

We’re officially less than 2 weeks out from Rock n Roll Las Vegas! As exciting as that is, we also know that the city is still reeling from the tragic shooting earlier this month. On Friday Rock N Roll announced some changes after consulting with a whole host of people and ways to support the Vegas Victims Fund. Here’s what you need to know!

The Expo: Still at the Las Vegas Convention Center

Full and Half Marathon Start Line: Moving to New York-New York, Hotel and Casino

Full and Half Finish Line: Stays the same at the Mirage Hotel

5K/10K course: Stays the same!

Full and Half Course Map: stay tuned, things are still being finalized

Bands: first 2.5 miles of the course will be an on course tribute for the lives lost during the Vegas shooting

Wondering how you can help out?

  1. Donate to the Las Vegas Victims’ Fund: Donate your distance ($5 for the 5K, $10 for the 10K, etc), or whatever you’re comfortable donating!
  2. Volunteer Race Weekend: Head here for more info on Race Crew and medical opportunities!
  3. Purchase a Vegas Strong T Shirt: Funds benefit the Las Vegas Victims Fund!

Image from runrocknroll.com

 

Image from runrocknroll.com

Road Runner Craft Classic Phoenix Race Week!

Disclaimer: I received a free entry to Road Runner Sports Craft Classic Phoenix as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

It’s race week for the Road Runner Sports Craft Classic Phoenix Half Marathon and 5K! To say I’m excited to escape to warmer weather for a few days is an understatement. I’ve been weather stalking and when 90s is the high, it makes me a tad worried about weather for race day. Don’t forget,

Online registration ends tonight at 1159 pm! You can save $10 from the half with BIBRAVEHALF and $5 off the 5K with BIBRAVE5k

The need to know for race weekend:

  • Packet Pick Up:
    • Friday, October 13: Road Runner Sports Tempe, 12-7 pm
    • Saturday, October 14: Road Runner Sports Scottsdale 10am-4 pm
    • Gotta pick up your bib! Can’t make it? Someone can pick up your bib for you, they just got to bring this release form
  • What You Get:
    • Bib
    • Tank or shirt
    • Beer tickets (find me on the run or after and you can have my beer!)
  • Then Do some shopping!
  • Race Day:
    • 630 AM start time (think that you’ll be done before brunch and avoid the heat!)
    • 4 hr time limit
    • Hydration Stations at miles 1.5, 3, 5, 7, 9, 10, 11, and 12
  • Review the course before hand!

Looking for things to do in Phoenix?

  • ASU plays University of Washington Saturday afternoon for all you College Football Fans
  • Lots of Pumpkin farms in the area
  • Arizona State Fair
  • Four Peaks Oktoberfest
  • Go to VisitPhoenix for more events!

Bibrave Race Review: Rock n Roll Liverpool Half Marathon

Disclaimer: I received a free entry to Rock n Roll Liverpool race as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

After a hectic week of battling jet lag, I’ve lived to tell about RnR Liverpool! I can’t remember the last time I did a Rock n Roll event (it’s been at least 4-5 years), partially due to them being a bit on the pricey side. I used RnR Liverpool as a destination race and an excuse to go overseas.

I flew into Manchester and got in the Wednesday before the race. It also happened to be 36 years hrs after the attacks on Manchester Arena, so things were still blocked off around the arena, including some of the businesses and attractions close by. There was a police presence with machine guns to boot. Thursday, the UK had a moment of silence at 11 AM, and I hung out for it at St. Anne’s Square in Manchester. I spent about a day and a half in Manchester, had a chance to run while I was there, including getting lost trying to find my hotel after my first run, seeing some of the sites and just getting adjusted.

Friday, I headed off to Liverpool by the National Rail, as it was only 4 stops and 12 British Pounds. I got off at the Lime Street Station and took a cab to my hotel, though if I knew where it was, I would have walked. I was close to the start of the race, as well as the Expo. I walked over to the Convention Center, where there was a line out the door (in all fairness, it was right at the start of the expo too). The police presence in general for Liverpool was more than Manchester, but I’m guessing it was because Liverpool is a port city. In any case, bags got searched. I ran the 5K and Half Marathon (more on the 5K in a different post), so I had 2 bibs and 2 shirts to get, in addition to a wrist band to get extra bling for doing 2 races afterwards. It was fairly easy to get shirts and bibs. They did offer a shirt exchange, which I took advantage of. I also took advantage of moving up 2 corrals for the half because training was going well. The expo itself was fairly small for RnR. I’m used to larger expos for them, but there were some local stores and business and not much else (or so that’s what it seemed like).

Race Day was Sunday and the race was a late start for a race. The Half Marathon started at 9 AM and the Full Marathon started at 10 AM, which made no sense to me. I would have started things the other way around since the full takes longer, or even started at 8 and 9 AM. At any rate, I grabbed breakfast at the hotel and walked over to the race start, not even half a mile from my hotel. By chance, I ran into Laura T., a fellow Bibrave Pro who lives in Dublin. We chatted and got caught up while going to the start and then went to our corrals. It was a bit windy and chilly out, so I slipped my long sleeved shirt under my Bibrave Shirt.

We started about 15 late, but I was able to move up another corral. I crossed the start about 930 and was off. There were some pacers, but I didn’t see any of them until late in the race (and I didn’t feel like they were that frequent). The first 3 miles or so were fairly flat. The only real hill came around mile 4. The first few miles took us through downtown, Liverpool ONE, the Liverpool Cathedral, the major Beatles Highlights and more. We took turns through Sefton Park, before heading on a little trip down Penny Lane and past Liverpool Collage. We headed back towards town and spent the last few miles running along the waterfront. I spent the first 10 miles underestimating how fast I was really going, and I didn’t realize that I was right around a PR. After I realized I was going to be just over or just under a PR, I somehow picked up the pace enough to run a 2:01:52, which was under my previous PR (at RnR NOLA in 2012) of 2:03:01.

Waterstops seemed like they were every 2-2.5 miles apart, which seemed on the further end of things. Something that was different was they had 8 ounce water bottles at the water stops. Though it made it easier to drink out of, since they were sport water bottles, I also nearly stepped on a few, which would have been more on the dangerous side. This is also probably the first half I’ve done with no electrolytes, because there was some sport drink that I’d never heard of (which after I caught up with Laura after the race, found out it was really sweet).

Post race: bling and food were right at the finish. We were directed into the Echo Arena for more food. Bag check was there as well. You went out through the escalators and back to the front of the arena. There was music, merchandise and an area to pick up extra medals (rock star or remix medals). I hung out a little bit, but with a tight hotel check out and being a bit skittish with the events from Manchester, I didn’t hang out all that long.

After the race and showering, fellow Bibrave Pro Laura and I went and got some lunch. It was fun to get to know each other and to see how some of the international races are done (since she lives in the Dublin, Ireland area). Afterwards, I took the train back to Manchester and stayed close to the airport for a ridiculously early flight to the US on Monday.

Overall, It was a good destination race for someone going overseas. I’d take a look at the water situation though. I feel like they needed to be closer together and I’d rather have cups over water bottles ( I saw 2 people trip on them). Do yourself a favor and look into this race!

Rock N Roll Liverpool: The Need to Know

Disclaimer: I received a free entry to Rock n Roll Liverpool race as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

It’s race week for Rock n Roll Liverpool! I arrived Wednesday morning in Manchester, England. To say I was a bit nervous is fair given the events of Monday night in Manchester. I’m here through Friday before I take the train an hour and change to Liverpool for race weekend. I’ve done my fair share of homework of the whats, whens and wheres, just because of this being the furthest I’ve traveled for a race (read, 4,000 miles!). RnR Liverpool is smart enough to have a race app and race center weekend website for essential information, but here’s some good to know information, especially if you’re coming from further away

Events: 5K on May 27 (9:30 am and 10 am start times depending on bib color); on May 28th, Half Marathon (9 AM start time), Marathon (10 AM start time), Fun Mile (1 pm start time). limited full marathon registration will be at the expo as all other events are sold out

Time Limits: 6 Hours for the Full, 3.5 hrs for the Half Marathon [from GUN TIME!]

Confirmation Sheets: Follow this link to look them up. MUST be printed and brought to the expo (not pulled up on your phone!)

Expo: May 26 from 1-7 pm; May 27 from 8-10 AM for the 5K and 10 AM to 5 PM for all other distances at the ACC Convention Center, King’s Doc. NO RACE DAY PICK UP for the Half, Full or Mile races.

Race Security: Full details here and on RnR Liverpool’s Facebook site. In short, bag check only available between 730 AM and 430 PM, bag sizes no larger than 50 cm x 30 cm by 20 cm and expect heightened security given the events in Manchester

Runner Tracking: Download the SportHive App!

Travel/Parking information: Take a look at the recommendations and come early!

Hopefully this helps put everything in a quick, easy to find spot. Stay safe, have fun and enjoy Liverpool!

Destination Races Santa Barbara: Race Week

Disclaimer: I received an entry to the Destination Races Santa Barbara to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

It’s race week! Who knew after a short work week (only 4 of my scheduled 7 days) that I’d probably need enough wine from the race to make up for it. Here’s some need to know information for Destination Races Santa Barbara

Registration: Register Online Through 5/11/2017 and save $10 with BIBRAVE10. Don’t forget, you gotta be 21 or over on race day to enjoy the wine at the finish!

Want to be a VIP: Upgrade and get:

  • Personalized Race Bibs
  • Express Packet Pick-Up at Expo with a VIP Gift
  • Exclusive Warm-up, Stretching Zone, Private Restrooms, and Breakfast at Start line
  • Transportation to Race Start from Select Pick-Up Locations
  • Private Gear Check
  • VIP Finish Line Tent, Recovery Brunch
  • Charity Donation

Packet Pick Up

  • May 11, 2017: 3-7 PM at Santa Barbara Running Company
  • May 12, 2017: 12-6 PM at Solvang Visitor Center (1639 Copenhagen Dr, Solvang, CA 93463)

Welcome Reception: May 12, 2017 from 630-830 PM at the Kalyra Winery. Tickets are still available!

Runner Tracking: Get all Set up here!

Race Day: May 13, 2017

  • 7 AM start time in Santa Ynez
  • Post race Party (with wine!): 930-12 in Solvang Park

 

 

 

 

 

 

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