Friday, August 19, 2011

The Hangover

Some wraps-ups about the race and the rest of my time in Vegas..

First off, a quick word about my shorts.  I wore Lululemon reflective speed shorts.  They are pretty unassuming (in fact, when I first saw them online I thought they just had some cute pinstripe detail):

But man alive do they light up in the night:

A small group of us planned to wear the shorts since we all had them.  We all agreed that we got more comments/compliments on them than any other piece of running apparel we'd worn in races before.  See, sometimes running clothes have safety functions as well as being cute.

I didn't gamble a cent or drink a drop of alcohol while in Vegas, but I had an awesome time.  I hadn't been in Vegas since I was in my early 20's doing what early 20 year olds do while in Vegas.  I had a fairly different experience this time around.

Sunday night I went to see Celine Dion's show at Caesars Palace.  I had been wanting to see her show for literally over a decade.  She closed her original show a few years ago which made me sad but she recently opened a new one.  While I love Celine Dion I wouldn't call myself a HUGE fan or anything like that.  I had seen her in concert before in Hawaii back in 1999 and I debated a bit about whether I needed to see her again.  But I figured the opportunities to see her were limited and there wasn't anything else I preferred to see over her that night.  

I am so happy I went. It was an amazing show.  A lot of people give me flack for liking Celine Dion but the woman has an amazing voice.  She's moved me to tears both times I've seen her perform.  In fact, this time around she didn't even have to be singing to make me emotional.

Side fact:  I start just about every run listening to a slightly esoteric Celine song.  I don't consider this my "Power Song" per se, but it is on the play list of songs I listen to when I want to get psyched up pre-race.  I've found high energy music isn't what I want to listen to before a race effort.  I like to listen to words.  

The lyrics from 2:30-2:46 never fail to give me goosebumps.

I was operating off of a 4 hour nap early Sunday afternoon at her show.  That's 4 hours of sleep in over 33 hours after running 6.5 hours through the night.  But I was riveted.  Sunday was a very good day.

Monday, I met up with a friend who recently moved to Vegas from the Bay Area.  We had decided to go hiking out at Red Rock Canyon.  When we were making plans I neglected to realize that it would be 90+ degrees out there.  But it wasn't as horrible as I thought it would be since it was a dry heat.  You barely even feel like you're breaking a sweat since it dries so quickly.  It felt sort of strange to be drinking SO much water which seemingly never came back out my body, though.

After hiking, we had lunch at Serendipity 3 which is probably more famous for its NYC location.

My old NYC favorite, Peanut Butter Frozen Hot Chocolate!!
And I had the most amazing grilled cheese sandwich and tomato soup.  I almost DIED when I saw they put Goldfish crackers in the soup.  I *heart* Goldfish crackers!!!

SOOO yummy!
I had stayed in the Hard Rock Hotel the first two nights since it was the race headquarters.  I really didn't care for the vibe there.  I'm not old, but I guess I have an old soul because all the skanky drunk young people there were really annoying.  In fact, I felt more at home with all the older people at Caesar's Palace.  Ha ha.  Luckily, I had decided to move to a different hotel the third and last night (mainly because it was cheaper to actually move to the strip).

I booked the cheapest hotel on the strip I could find.  It ended up being at the Excalibur.  After taxes and resort fees, I ended up paying $52 for my room (list price was $35 online).  When I checked in, the guy at the desk told me he had upgraded me.  I went up to my room and was greeted by the largest hotel room I've had.  It was a suite with two bathrooms, two flat screen televisions, a living room and dining room.  The bathroom in the bedroom looked like this:

Yeah, I think I've stayed in hotel rooms smaller than this bathroom.

Sadly, I didn't have much time in this room.  I checked in around 6 pm and had a Cirque du Soleil show to see at 9:30 that night.  I had booked a ticket to see "Mystere."  It was actually my third choice show ("O" had been my original choice but they had an off schedule the weekend I was there, "Ka" had been next but it sold out while I was deciding).  I don't know if it was the late start time and the lack of sleep catching up with me, but I was underwhelmed.  I saw "La Nouba" in Orlando a few years back and it was just too similar to that.

The strip on my walk Monday night.

I liked staying at the Excalibur even if not for the ultra cheap super duper room.

When I got home, Boyfriend had this for me:

"Congrats Ultra 'RoadBunner'"
An ice cream cake!!   Yummers.  We're still working our way through it.  Over halfway to go!

A short word on my leg:  When I started running during the race, I assumed I felt no pain because of the Tylenol I had taken.  But really, Tylenol can only do so much, you know?  I had no issues the entire race.  I was a little afraid after the race it would flare up horribly, but the 3 days post-race I was actually in less pain than I had been the three days going into the race.  I didn't take any pain killers once the race was over, either.  Strange, right?  Right now I feel like my leg is sliding back a little, but I am still in less pain than I was before the race started.  I truly believe the root of my problem is a pinched nerve somewhere and I'm hoping all that running jarred it loose a little.  I was seriously planning on giving up on the Half Moon Bay full but since this went so well I'm rethinking that.  I guess we'll see how I feel as I resume running.

An outtake from our photo shoot.  Guess he didn't think he was properly groomed for his public.


audgepodge said...

OMG love the frozen hot choc and grilled cheese pics... YUMMO!

And wow, those shorts are so unassuming in daylight - who would've thought!

And what a great deal on that Excalibur room... for $53 you were a pimpdaddy for the night :P

And haha to your comment about skanky peeps vs old folks. You are an old soul at heart... me, too :D

Also, you're making me rethink my running music selection... I might need to add some verbal encouragement as well. I did have the Superman theme as the first song for my first marathon but that was more to make myself laugh. :P

Layla said...

I have about 19 things I could comment on, because this post was both cool and funny. First things first, I MUST try this peanut butter frozen hot chocolate marvel!! Post-NYC marathon treat? YES, PLEASE!

Those shorts are insane. They're so bright and cool, I wonder if drivers would accidentally veer off the road while staring.

I can't believe you went hiking after running almost 32 miles. Good lord.

As for the leg, I find that weird pains sometimes pop up before a race (case in point: the whole past week!). I don't think it's wholly psychosomatic; I think I start trying too hard to run carefully and properly because I'm worried about getting injured before a race. But that's just my theory.

Love the Mario outtake!

Rabbits' Guy said...

Whew .. exhausted just reading! And then good old Mario goes and upstages everything!

naomi said...

I have never tried the PB hot chocolate. Must add that to my list. And grilled cheese too, of course.

Also, I can't believe you had the energy and legs to hike the day after your ultra!!!

Alisa said...

Mmmmmmmmmm ice cream cake!

Also, you HIKED after running an ultra---you are nuts and also in amazing shape.

Love the shorts and the fact that they are so reflective....when I'm back out and running again I may need to look into these.

OMG that frozen PB hot chocolate looks sooooooooo good---I've been that place in New York I didn't know they had other locations.

I'm an old soul too...skanky drunks are annoying...actually drunks in general are annoying they don't even need to be skanky for me to be annoyed.

cliff said...

i didn't stay at hard rock last year, because the reviews mentioned what you said. that excalibur room sounded fantastic though! and that was a great price!

btw, no matter how to wanna say / explain it, 4 hours is NOT a nap.

Rachel said...

oh man, i would run 32 miles JUST to eat that pb hot chocolate and grilled cheese! those shorts are awesome, btw, do they still sell them? when i went to vegas for E.T. i did the same as you and went to shows/enjoyed the hotel rooms. the whole going crazy in vegas is just really not my thing : / also, you are crazy for hiking after the race. i was a total zombie for at least a couple days!

Leana said...

Wow, I didn't know that they had rooms like that at the Excalibur! We are off to Vegas this weekend and going to see Mystere (which definitely looks like typical CdS) and O. Sorry you weren't able to catch the shows you wanted!

BikramYoginiRunner said...

Wow, I didn't know there was a Serendipity in LV. I have visited the one in NY. YES, this is where I am going in December :-) I also love those Lululemon reflective speed shorts. They look perfect for the RNR LV Half which happens to be at night time this year. Nice!