Boston Bound: Sin City had me at hello - Rock n Roll Las Vegas Half Marathon By Barefoot Glen

Discussion in 'Front Page News' started by pbarker, Dec 11, 2010.

  1. pbarker

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    [​IMG]
    Boston Bound: Sin City had me at hello
    Rock n Roll Las Vegas Half Marathon
    By Barefoot Glen

    I have never competed athletically with another person in my life. That changed after a first round with the Burning Runner at the inaugural Los Angeles Rock'n'Roll Half Marathon. After reading his article Burning Runner: Battling the Barefoot Runner, I was intrigued with the idea of running into my opponent for a second unexpected match, of course at the capital of glamorous sparring matches - Las Vegas. I could just see his next article, "The Burning Runner vs. the Barefoot Runner - the Rematch." He was shooting for an aggressive 1:30 time, but I was up for the challenge.


    This would be the last of three half marathons spaced just 3 weeks apart: RnR LA, Silverstrand, and finally RnR Vegas. I've read of runners successfully racing 3 back-to-back half marathons and sometimes making personal records on the second, so I thought, "Why not?" The timing was perfect too because my training program for the Boston marathon was to begin two weeks later.


    Since this was Vegas and a Rock'n'Roll race, to make this experience a little more interesting, I thought I would spice it up with a wild man outfit with nothing on but a skimpy loincloth, a bone necklace, and a wild wig.


    A few days before the race, I find out my opponent was down from an injury. I was disappointed that my main reason for doing Vegas was now out of the race, but I also felt bad for my running comrade. I know the Ol' Inury Fandango too well. I can't imagine his disappointment.


    Well, the hotel was booked, the registration was paid, the vacation time was approved, and I had other goals to accomplish - I was going to Sin City.


    Sin City had me at hello. As soon I saw the lights, the sexy billboards, the outdoor TV screens the size of football fields, all the brand new hotel/casinos, the chinking slot machines, and spending a 3-day weekend with my barefoot running buddy Rob (also running the race), how could I not let my hair down and think of FUN. I paid a little extra to book a room for 3 nights at the Luxor, which was conveniently situated right across the street from the starting line. Of course, I had to sign up for the all-day buffets and spa. That combined with late night clubbing, drinking, sight-seeing... Do you know where this is going?


    The alarm clock blares at 5:30 a.m. race day morning. I hit the snooze button thinking the starting line is right across the street. The race doesn't start until 7. I have time. I finally roll out of bed at 5:45, quickly shower, eat, and dying for a cup of coffee, but the line for Starbucks looked about 20 minutes long. I ran into my first problem at 6:00 a.m. - a wardrobe malfunction with my costume. My bone necklace was not cooperating. We finally leave the hotel room at 6:20 a.m. With the crowds, the walk to the starting line took longer than I expected. We ran whenever we could on the sidelines to inch forward faster.


    We still had to get to gear check, which I had no idea where it was. When we finally got to gear check, the line was unexpectedly, unbelievably long. While waiting in line, I transformed from running sweats into my Wildman costume with everyone around me watching. I heard my first few OMGs of the day. I finished just as I reached the gear check table. I was now almost naked, and it was only 44 degrees out. I knew there was no time for a warm-up run or stretching. Just as I turned around to leave the table, the gun went off. I uttered MY first OMG. I was supposed to be in the first corral, which was on the other side of the horse shoe. With a slow stampede of 28,000 people I knew my chance of catching up with my pace group was lost.


    I spent the first few miles dodging between people to try to stay at pace and attempt to catch up. I expended a lot of energy with the zigzagging and lost time with the constant sudden braking behind groups of people. But there was a silver lining. The countless shouts of OMG, you're my hero, wow, caveman, Tarzan, nice, Geico, smiles, cheers, and slow building chuckles of amazement while I, like a gazelle, gracefully and quickly sped passed more than 27,000 runners barefoot in a loincloth. The energy I felt from everyone was overwhelming and helped powered me through until I reached a comfortable pace group halfway through the race.


    At mile 7, I decided to do the chocolate GU I carried in the ball of my hand the whole way. A runner came up to me and said, "I'm not even going to ask where that came from." I laughed with him, and afterwards, I realized the inside of my mouth was covered with GU and there was no water station in sight. You would think after all the races I've run I would have learned by now not to GU until I see water ahead. At mile 9, I realized the mile timers displayed lapsed time instead of the split times, which I had scribbled on the underside of my forearm for a 1:32 half marathon, so I had no idea how I was doing and if I needed to slow down or speed up. Yes, I decided since my opponent was out, I was going to shoot for a more realistic 1:32 instead of a 1:30. But at this point the toll from having to catch up earlier started to take its effect. Even a 1:32 was probably out of reach. I decided to just focus on working the costume, playing the crowds, and having some fun.


    It was a little strange seeing the Mandalay Hotel in the distance, which I knew was the finish line. It was encouraging, but also a little daunting because I knew it was still 3 miles away. Unfortunately, I didn't have the drive nor the strength to do the same last mile sprint I had done in the last two half marathons. In fact, my leg started to cramp the last 1/4 mile stretch into the finish line, which I struggled to overcome, but when the announcer saw me and I heard theOMG, slow build-up of excitement in his voice, it energized me, and I knew at that momentI hadran a great race. And knowing that "What happens in Vegas, Stays in Vegas," I let out from deep-within, a guttural Tarzan Wildman scream while crossing thefinish line.


    [TJ here. I was so curious to know, as I'm sure you guys are as well, what Glen's time was, and he said it was 1:37:47. Still, quite respectable considering he had to really haul it to try to catch up with his pace group. Congrats, Glen! And BTW, you would have stomped TJ (Not me..well, I mean of course me, but I'm not TJ. Oh wait, yes I am...never mind!) even if he wasn't injured and showed up!]

    Link to Glen's Video Interview with Competitor Magazine


    http://bcove.me/fbh397n5(Thanks, PB!)


    [​IMG]
     
  2. slowrider

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    VERY INSPIRING> Thank you.....
     
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  3. Barefoot Caveman

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    The finish line photo made the RnR Vegas marathon album cover on the home page ofCompetitor.com the first day.Not sure why they swapped it out... Maybe the shoe companies threatened pulling their sponsorship. LOL

    I should send this photo as aXmas cardto my podiatrist who put me in the rigid plastic knee height orthotics on both legsjust before I started into barefoot running. He was pretty shocked when I told him Iditched the orthotics, starting running and hiking barefoot, and all my feet and leg problems disappeared.
     
  4. Barefoot Caveman

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    Thanks TJ! It certainly would have made for a very colorful story ifTJ (not you TJ, but TJ the Burning Runner) was able to race that day. It would have been even more perfect if we got TJ to dress in a TRex costume... ;)
     
  5. Barefoot Caveman

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    Thanks slowrider! I appreciate that. :)
     
  6. Barefoot TJ

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    Cool on both counts... Well not the pulling of the photo from the cover. I would ask why, If I were you. That bites. I wonder why it was pulled, and not having to be prescribed orthotics like that.

    And yes, do send that as a Christmas card to your podiatrist, Glen.

    P.S. I would love to have a bio from you including your story with problems with your running shoes and having to wear orthotics like that for our Member Profile of the Week feature. If you're interested, please PM twinkletoes for me, since she handles these now. Thanks.
     
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  7. Barefoot Terry

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    That is both AWESOME and HILARIOUS at the same time! Would have loved to have seen the battle. You've got balls, my barefoot friend, and not just on the soles of your feet!!!
     
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  8. Barefoot Caveman

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    Hahaha Thanks Barefoot Terry. Hopefully you are not referring to a picture floating around on the Web that I don't know about ;) lol I discovered a few blogs out there that talked about me in the race, some with pics. One pic I spotted made me look I ... let's just say it made me look like I was truly chasing Jane.
     
  9. Elvisbloom

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    Really enjoyed reading this article. Love your whole outlook. Hopefully someday I will be fast enough to run alongside you!
     
  10. Barefoot Caveman

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    Thanks Elvis Bloom! Congrats btw on your first half. RnR Philly sounds like a really nice race. Maybe one year I'll tackle the whole RnR series. It may be a fun way to connect with you all. Also, I too experienced some previous problems with top of the foot pain. I experienced it when I first started barefooting and then right after the RnR San Diego marathon. I think whenever my form is slightly off, it triggers it, and I notice my form gets a little sloppy whenever my calves are tight.
     
  11. pbarker

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    http://bcove.me/fbh397n5
     
  12. Joshh

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    Glen, I wanted to say RESPECT. Thank you for showing the way. Ishowed my wife the photo of your caveman finish. She laughed then looked at me real quick and asked, "you aren't going to start doing that are you?" So you might have more than just the Burning Runner for challengers soon!
     
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  13. Barefoot Caveman

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    Thank you Joshh for the kind words. I got to admit I was a little nervous showing up for the race in the costume. But the positive support I got from everyone during the race was phenomenal. 'Think outside the box'? How about 'Think outside the running gear'. It's one reason I'm proud to be a member of BRS. We have all took the courage to step out of convention, to think outside the box, and move to something that made sense.
     
  14. Barefoot Caveman

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    Thanks forthe headsup on the video pbarker! Geez, its showing up as the headline video on Competitor.com right now. OMG!!
     
  15. migangelo

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    Glenn,



    i was browsing another site and they have your picture and article linked. they're wondering if you live the paleo lifestyle?



    Mike



    http://groups.google.com/group/huaraches/browse_thread/thread/0a83355586999c31#
     

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  16. Joshh

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    Glen you gotta do Boston like that, if it's legal. It looked like you were having way too much fun! I love the highfive you threw out while you were being interviewed.
     
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  17. Barefoot Caveman

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    It's funny that you bring that up Mike. I actually follow a paleo diet. I'm not talking raw meat and picking berries off of trees, but grilled lean meat and fish, whole grain, fresh fruits and vegetables. I rarely eat processed or junk food anymore. I used to be a yo-yo dieter, but on this plan, which I learned from the Weight Watcher's Core Plan,I finally maintain a consistent goal weight and am the healthiest I've ever been. I'm gonna to post a nutrition segment in a few weeks as part of the 'Boston Bound' series.
     
  18. Barefoot Caveman

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    Haha, thanks Joshh. A lot of folks are telling me the same thing... I'm seriously considering the possibility of running all my races now as The Running Barefoot Caveman. Its a big decision. Yeah, the highfive kind of came out of nowhereafter aguy crossed the finish line, lol. I'm glad that was caught on the video. We were seriously right in back of the finish line... I didn't get a chance to even catch my breath before the interview.:)
     
  19. Joshh

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    I don't know Glen. Seems like a no-brainer to me. I'm seeing a future where every race has a posse of cavemen and cavewomen. Soon will come the Cave division in all major races. I'm seeing prizes of clubs, animal skins, teeth, etc... In fact I'm kind of wondering when your Youtube chanel will have a DIY loincloth. I'm bummed because my beard growing capacities are so meager.
     
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  20. Barefoot TJ

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    So, Glen, you want me to change your screen name to Barefoot Caveman then? Hee. Just let me know. ;-) You really should consider "becoming" the Barefoot Running Caveman or Running Barefoot Caveman or whichever.

    Also, if you could share that diet info as completely as is possible without taking up too much of your time, I sure would read it and appreciate it. -TJ
     
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