Wednesday, November 23, 2016

RnR Vegas Expo and 5k

I'm going to go ahead and start my Vegas recap with the expo and the 5k.  We got up bright and early on Saturday (easy because of the time change).  This also meant we had an easy breakfast with no wait.  We went to Mon Ami Gabi, even though they have a location close to us, because they are so good with gluten free food and the friend I was with has a wheat allergy.  It was delicious!

Next we, met up with my parents at the Bellagio and took a bit of time to check out the conservatory there.  They change it up seasonally and it's always fun to check out the little details.


My parent's had a rental car which definitely made things easier.  We all piled into the car and drove to the Las Vegas Convention Center for the race expo.  It was a quick drive, 15 minutes or so, and we were able to find parking relatively easily since we got there around 10:30 am.  We walked into the expo and thankfully, the crowds weren't too bad at that point.  We were able to get a couple fun photo ops and then went straight toward package pick up.

Fooling around in front of the video of the course

There was a bit of a line but none of us had to wait for more than 2 or 3 people in front of us as the lines were split up pretty well by bib number.  After getting our bibs, we did have to wait in a separate line for our shirts but that line moved quickly too.

More Expo photo fun

And then we were off into the expo.  It was huge!  We wandered around a bit, sampled some stuff, my mom found a type of protein bar she really liked and ended up getting a whole case of it!  I found a headband that matched the outfit that I was wearing for the half and then we found a booth with a huge sale on shoes and clothing.  My mom and I both bought some winter work-out gear there.

I don't think we even got through half of the expo it was so big.  But after 90 minutes we were all tired and hungry so we headed out and to the Wynn where we had a delicious brunch at Tableau.  We had heard that all the restaurants at the Wynn were great with special diets and we were not disappointed.  They handled our table of 2 vegetarians, 1 vegan, and 1 gluten free diet with no problem at all.


After that, we went back to our hotel to nap and rest up before the 5k.  The race started at 5 (I think) so we decided to meet up at 3 at the Bellagio.  Once we met my dad there, we called for a Lyft.  We used Lyft throughout the weekend and it really was a great way to get around.  I'm glad we went with that option instead of the monorail as I heard it was pretty crowded.

Matching Elvis shirts for me and my dad!

Anyway, we took the Lyft to the SLS Hotel and walked across the street to where the 5k started.  The start area was right off the strip but the majority of the course was on a road parallel to the strip and it was aptly named Industrial Road.  It felt industrial and it had a great view of things like pawn shops, sex stores, etc.  But we could see the lights of the Las Vegas Strip hotels in the distance :)  And the race did an amazing job with the music, there was music almost the whole 5k.  I was pretty impressed.

View of Circus Circus on the Strip while waiting in the Corrals

We were accompanying my dad so we walked most of it.  My dad's goal was to make it in under 55 minutes, and we did with an official finish time of 54:07.  The course was pretty crowded, especially in the back where we were, but it wasn't too bad.  I think it would have been hard if you were trying to run the whole thing or had a time goal but we were going about the same speed as everyone around us and were situated well in the correct corral.  The only other downside of the race due to the crowds was how long we had to wait for our corral to even start.  I think it was around an hour that we were waiting and slowly shuffling up toward the start line.  That's a lot of time on your feet when you have a half marathon the next day.

Time for selfies since we were waiting so long to start

We finished and got out water and fruit cup.  The fruit cup seems like a weird choice since you need a spoon to eat it but it was actually really refreshing.  We also indulged in our free beer while listening to the band playing at the finish line festival :)  We also admired our medals.  They were huge and heavy!  They definitely did not skimp on the 5k medals.

My dad and friend crossing under the Guitar guy

After we finished our beer, we headed back to the SLS hotel and called another Lyft once we got there.  I have to say, we had a lot of great Lyft drivers all weekend and had a really interesting conversation with this guy.  The traffic was pretty bad trying to get back to the hotel so it was a good thing he was a good conversationalist :)

Showing off the medal while listening to the post-race band

We eventually got back to the hotel and cleaned up to head out to dinner.  My mom had read about good vegan options at Lemongrass, which was located at the Aria hotel.  And this was another one that did not disappoint at all.  There were lots of vegan or gluten-free options and we were all really happy here.  Plus we had left-overs for later in the week :)


So that's the end of this long day and long post.  I'm hoping to recap the half marathon next week.