Viva Las Vegas!

Mom, Kristen, and I recently traveled to Las Vegas for a girls weekend slash run-cation to the Las Vegas Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon series (5k and half marathon).  I have tons and tons of pictures to share, so this post will just be the trip part, and I’ll write a race recap for both the 5k and the half marathon, with lots more pictures! I hope to share my race recaps tomorrow, but for tonight, here’s our trip, in photos!

Early, early Thursday morning, Mom and I were on a plane, and Kristen was on a plane, heading to Fabulous Las Vegas!

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We all met in Vegas, and it was still early morning there!  Aren’t time changes wonderful?  Anyway, we got checked into our hotel, and began wandering around, checking out the Strip.  We stayed at the Excalibur, but walked through many of the hotels/casinos around there to look at the shops and all the fun casino things.

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I love the Bellagio and the fountains.  The fountains are so pretty, and I love how the atrium inside changes with each season.  We at lunch at a cafe inside Paris I think, and continued on our journey.  I wish I would have worn my Garmin to see how many steps/miles we walked on Thursday.  It was A. LOT.

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We eventually made our way to the Las Vegas Convention Center, for  packet pickup and the expo for the race.

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Packets were picked up, sparkly skirts were purchased, and lots of other stuff was bought, tried, or looked at.  Kristen won a shirt from the Air National Guard for doing pull ups.  Go sisser!

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Not too much else happened on the first day.  A lot of time was spent walking around looking at stuff, and lots of time was spent at the expo.  By  the time we got back to our hotel, still kind of on Central Time, we were ready for bed, tired from traveling, walking around the entire city, and checking out the expo.

Friday morning, we grabbed breakfast (the first of 4 meals eaten at the all-day buffet!), walked over to the Luxor to check it out, and then got ready for our first Vegas run.

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We walked over to the Mandalay Bay too, and went over by the aquarium.  Mom found a stuffed stingray, and of course, Kristen and I fell in love with the “majestic sea flap flaps” and we each just had to get one.

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Our first race was on going to be Saturday night, but we wanted to get a run in, so we ran from the Excalibur to the Fabulous Las Vegas sign, took some pictures, ran a bit further, then turned around and ran back.  I don’t recommend running further south than the sign (if you ever have the desire to do so), there are no sidewalks!  It was runnable on the gravelly shoulder, but wasn’t the best running surface.

There were lots of people taking pictures, and we didn’t want to wait in the line, so w kind of went off to the side and got some pics with the famous sign.

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I managed to get a fun running selfie on the way back to the Excalibur.  Because, of course I did!

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We got back to the hotel, ate our second of four buffets, then showered and figured out a plan for the evening.  We wanted to go to a show while we were in town, and decided on Cirque Du Soleil Zarkana.  We ate our early dinner at the buffet, three of four trips to the buffet, if you’re keeping track, then had a drink and made our way to the show!

Now, if you’ve been to Vegas, you know that getting anywhere at all is not easy.  There are ups and downs and turns and this shuttle and that monorail and then around through this casino… it goes on and on.  So we wanted to get to the Aria, from the Excalibur, and I think, between everything, it took us just about an hour.  That was not a fun hour.  Lots of speed walking, running, frustrations, and casinos between us and the show.

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We finally got there, and the show was amazing!! I loved it!  Cirque du Soleil did not disappoint.  I would definitely go to another show someday.  The stuff they can do is just mind-blowing.

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We took a Lyft back to our hotel (where had you been all our lives!?!), had our fourth and final buffet snack/late dinner, and crashed.

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Saturday morning was race morning! Of course, the race wasn’t until 6:00 at night, so we had a whole day to spend before our race!  We went ahead and got all dressed up in our race outfits, and ventured to Red Rocks Running Company, a local Las Vegas running store.  After visiting them, we got pedicures, and then made our way back to the Strip to have lunch and get to the race.

Kristen had this idea that we all had to match for the race… so we bought Sparkle Athletic skirts at the race expo, and wore our KC Running Co. tanks tops.

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Once we got back to the Strip, we ate at BURGR, Gordon Ramsay’s upscale hamburger restaurant, in Planet Hollywood.  Tasty burger!

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Mom played with the showgirls, and then we went to the Bellagio to watch the fountains for a little bit.

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We got to the SLS Hotel, and waited for the 5k to start across the street.  The 5k race recap is here!  KCRC represented at the Las Vegas RNR 5k!

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Once we made our way back to our hotel, we were ready for bed, and then Sunday morning was race morning again!  The half marathon started at 4:30, and before the race, we had breakfast, then went to a movie to kill some time and stay off our legs.  The weather, unfortunately, took a bad turn and was extremely windy and cold!  Half Marathon race recap is here!

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2 races, 2 days, 3 medals.  Very tired feet and legs, but a very happy girl!

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Monday, we met up with the We Run Social group in front of the Bellagio, then Mom, Kristen, and I headed out for a short little shake out run.

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We ended our run as close as we could get to In-N-Out Burger, because we had never had it, and we’d all heard it was amazing, so we just had to try it out!  It was just as delicious as we’d heard.  We had our double double’s animal style.  I don’t exactly remember what all was added with animal style, but we had extra sauce, mustard mixed in with our meat, and other yummy additions.  We ran into Mark and his wife at In-N-Out Burger.  What are the odds?!

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After our In-N-Out trip, we changed into our swimsuits and spent a lot of the afternoon in the hot tub and sauna.

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After the spa trip, we ate at Dick’s Last Resort, a restaurant where the employees are obnoxious and make fun of you, all in good fun.

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We packed most of our stuff up on Monday night, because our flights were in the morning on Tuesday.  A bit more time was spent chilling in bed with our majestic sea flap flaps, and then it was early to bed for an early rising to head home!

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Tuesday was the travel day! We sent Kristen off, then Mom and I had a bit of a wait for our flight, and then before you knew it, we were back in KC.  Mom headed for home on Wednesday morning.

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Lots more to talk about, regarding the 5k and the half marathon.  More to come!  Mom and Kristen, I had a blast in Las Vegas, and really enjoyed our girls weekend!

Best and Worst about Las Vegas

As you know, I was in Las Vegas during the last week, for the Rock ‘n’ Roll 5k and Half Marathon over the weekend.  Las Vegas truly is a fabulous city, and there are a few things I love about Las Vegas, but there are also a few things I hate about Las Vegas.  I’ll try my best to post race recaps and Vegas posts this weekend, but for today’s Thursday’s Things post, here are the best and worst things (in my opinion) about the great city of Las Vegas.

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Las Vegas Bests:

Las Vegas is by far one of the best places, EVER, to people watch.  People of every possible nationality, every shape, every background, every sobriety.  People watching heaven.  I could happily just sit and watch, all day.

Music.  All the time.  Everywhere. Like Kristen said, it’s like the soundtrack for your life! Every casino had music, walking on the street there was music playing, or bands playing, or people banging on pots and pans and drums.. there was always music playing!

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The Bellagio Fountains.  I’d only been to Las Vegas one time prior to this trip, and my favorite part of my last trip was watching the Bellagio fountains.  Unfortunately, we only got to see one full show with music during our trip last week, but it was beautiful, and I’d love to watch more.

Las Vegas Worsts:

SMOKE.  UGH.  Enough with the smoke already.  It’s like nobody in Las Vegas got the memo that smoking causes lung cancer.  I hated walking through the smoky casinos.  Gag me.

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There is absolutely no possible way to walk or drive anywhere in a straight line.  This way and that way and up and down and around that thing and through that casino, and around that walk way.  The only time during my entire time that I got from point A to point B in a straight line was running the half marathon, on the strip, with no cars! But even then, it was dodging around people and random bits of clothing!

Very little Dr. Pepper.  Only a few restaurants had Dr. Pepper.  What a shame.

Have you been to Las Vegas? What was your favorite part?  More Vegas posts to come this weekend!!

Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas

The Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series is the ‘World’s Largest Running Series’ with reportedly more than 500,000 competitors across the USA each year.  I have heard a lot about this race, especially the Las Vegas Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon and Half Marathon.  One of the coolest things about this race in particular is that you get to run on the Las Vegas strip at night.  Also, there is live music and bands throughout the whole course, every mile!

I have a few bloggy-friends who have attended in years past (notably Dorothy with Mile Posts), and this year many of them did again.  There are also a few people I know that are hoping to run Las Vegas next year.

It got Mom and I talking, because somehow, my dear mother has NEVER been to Las Vegas, and both of us would love to run this race in particular, and it would be a fantastic excuse to get my Mom to Vegas!  My sister is on a quest to run a half marathon in every state, and she hasn’t done so yet in Nevada…

You see where this is going…

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Mom, Kristen, and I will be running the Las Vegas Rock ‘n’ Roll 1/2 Marathon next year!

We were able to sign up with the pre-sale today.  This will be Mom’s and my first destination race, which we are both super excited for.  And it’ll be a great fun weekend, only a year to wait!

Have you done a Rock ‘n’ Roll race before? Which one?  Have you ever been to a destination race? Where?