Listen to the Ali on the Run Show!
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Next Stop: Las Vegas
Dear person who decided the week would include 5 working days and 2 weekend days:
Do I like coming to work every day? Yup. Sure do. But do I love the weekends when I don’t have to work? Why yes, yes I do.
After last weekend’s Marathon Mania, this weekend was exactly what I needed: relaxing, gluttonous and carefree.
Brian and I spent the weekend in Short Hills, NJ, where we shacked up in sin at a very lovely Hilton…that had a hot tub…and a bar…and a giant mall next door. We ate — a lot. We ordered room service — more than once. We drank — so long, delicious bottle of wine from Wolffer Estates. We swam, we slept in and we followed one very important rule all weekend: no cell phones.
This rule worked especially well for Brian, who managed to lose his phone on the way to the hotel. Oops.
I turned my phone off as soon as we arrived on Saturday, and despite turning it on once to text a certain friend, I was very technologically well behaved.
I’m kind of considering making this a new weekend rule in general. It was nice not checking up on Twitter and Facebook constantly, not reading blogs and not updating my own blog.
Turns out, as much as I love this little online world, I can survive just fine without knowing how many miles each of my virtual friends ran on Sunday morning. My guess? Everyone ran a lot. And then ate something warm like oatmeal or French Toast for breakfast, maybe with pumpkin in it, and then took an ice bath and foam rolled and watched football. Or baked. Am I right? Not at all? Damn.
So, the weekend was wonderfully relaxing and I got back to the city last night feeling ready to get back into my life routine. Since the marathon, I’ve been running around like a crazy person, and I’m hoping to reel it in a bit this week. Back to eating better. Back to the regular workouts. Back to a clean apartment. Maybe.
Since I didn’t have cell phone access over the weekend, I wasn’t able to follow through on my “Get drunk and register for a marathon” plan.
Luckily, however, I’ve still got my next race lined up: the Rock N Roll Las Vegas Half Marathon.
Not the full. “Just” the half.
I ran this race with Team Challenge, the half marathon training program affiliated with the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation, back in 2009. It was my second half at the time and I loved it.
I had never been to Las Vegas so running the Strip was the best possible way to see the city. I spent the weekend with great runner friends and definitely appreciated the very flat course.
This year, CCFA is the charity sponsor for the race.
Remember that time I busted my butt (and you all helped) to raise $20,000 for CCFA?
Well, in addition to coming in second place in the Run For The Rabbit competition, I also just found out about another little perk.
CCFA has invited me — and Brian! — to run the Las Vegas Half in December as “VIP” guests of the charity. They are generously covering my travel expenses (not his), putting us up in a VIP suite at the Mandalay Bay resort and paying for my race entry. I am so honored and so, so, so appreciative of this offer.
Reasons, other than the obvious, that I’m pumped about this:
- The race happens to fall on Brian’s birthday weekend. I’m not positive, but I think this can count as a birthday present. I’ll have to look into it. (Kidding, Brian. Kidding.) But we’ll get to celebrate his birthday in Vegas!
- I have a new running goal! Yay! Something to train for!
- Celine Dion has a show in Vegas. And I will be in Vegas. (This brings me back to the birthday present comment above…)
- I’ll get to run my first night race. The race starts at 5:30 pm. Crazy.
- Brian will run his first half marathon — and I’ll get to be there for it.
- I love slot machines.
My next step is coming up with a training plan and formulating some race day goals. I’d obviously love to go for a PR, but I am, as usual, filled with self doubt on that front.
My half marathon PR is from the National Half Marathon, which I ran back in March.
I finished that race in 1:44:48. I was fast then.
I definitely want to focus on speedwork over the next few months. I want to get fast again, since marathon training has slowed me down a bit. I’m secretly hoping a certain former coach of mine can be coerced (or, you know, nominally paid) into helping me out with a training plan. I could use a good ass kicking.
This morning I stared at — OK, obsessed over — my splits from the National Half.
So yeah. There’s the time to beat.
For my next trick, I will sprint everywhere I go. I will also stock up on my leg warmer collection.
December in Las Vegas isn’t warm, you know. It’s chilly. Like, short shorts and leg warmer chilly.
See you in Las Vegas!
(That last note is for you, Celine, if you’re reading, which I know you are.)