“Virtual” implies an alternate or imaginary world. In this case I am giving you full control of your imaginary 13.1 world.Here is my "race report" which is completely fictional.
Three weeks ago, my running girlfriends talked me into running a half marathon in Vegas. I'm not a drinker nor a Vegas fan but love standing outside the Bellagio watching the water fountains dance to Time to Say Goodbye being sung by Andrea Bocelli and Sara Brighton.
Since I just ran a full marathon 2 months ago and qualified for Boston, and kept up running long runs of 10 miles on the weekends, I figured I could easily run a half and maybe even get a good time.
The rooms at the Venetian were monsterous and me and my two girlfriends Jan and Claudia quickly changed our clothes to go out for dinner and one drink. I wasn't worried about going out with them because I am not a night owl nor a big drinker and always get to bed early before a race.
Sitting at one of the many bars in the casino we started chatting and a shot of tequila appears. Where did that come from? I lean over and Claudia flashes a big smile "I told you I was going to buy everyone a drink." What was I to do but drink it?
Clink went our glasses and down went the tequila chased with a lime and salt.
I can't remember the last time I had a shot, probably at a Christmas party years ago. My last tequila memories were from my early 20's and is a mixture of bad memories of falling drunk on the ground or puking. I forgot how terribly potent that stuff was and my body warmed as the alcohol pulsed through my veins. Immediately I started relaxing.
Gosh this is fun, I thought. But no more drinks since there's a race tomorrow.
We continued our conversation and next thing I know, there is another shot of tequila. Jan exclaimed "I can't drink alone".
Down it went. At this point I'm more than buzzed. I'm a light weight and drunk now. Since the other two had bought drinks, it was my turn. I succumbed to peer pressure....another round of shots coming right up.
If you read my Running Challenge Question about my DNF, you'll know I can't handle my beer. That really needs to be extended to handling my alcohol. Any of it.
Uhhh, I don't feel so good I told my friends and headed back to the room. I won't go into details but it entails talking to the porcelein godess and sleeping on the bathroom floor.
6am rolls around and Jan pushed me awake. Get up! This is no fun I thought. Jan hands me a glass and murmbers something about the hair of the dog that bit you. What the heck! why not? Its not like I can feel worse and maybe it really does work.
We had decided to wear pink tutu's for the race and surprisingly we were able to dress and dance through the lobby doing piroutte's with some amazing burst of energy. We hopped in the shuttle outside our hotel and were dropped off to become just one of the many runners milling around. Lining up at the start my stomach wasn't feeling so good and my head was swimming. My mind started negative talk...How am I supposed to run a race drunk? What am I doing? I can't do this. I pictured a big red stop sign to stop the negative thought and thought Yes, I can. Pull up your big girl panties, quit whining and get out there and run.
A look of horror crossed my face. In my drunken stupor I forgot to put on underwear under my pink tutu. How could I forget underwear? At least it was a long tutu and as long as I didn't fall over I'd be ok.
The race started and I continued to feel ill. All the jostling was making my stomach feel worse and at mile 1.5 I ran over to the side and found a bush. Gosh, this isn't fun at all. Why? Why? Why did I drink those shots? At the two mile mark my time was 23 minutes and I still had 11 miles to go. Did I mention I felt horrible?
Miles 2-4 were ok until I got to the next water stop and accidently grabbed Gatorade. Ugh! Not good at all. My stomach immediately revolted and I was off to the side again. I leaned over and felt the wind lift my tutu skirt. Quickly standing, I pulled down my tutu and looked frantically around. A couple of runners, girls thank goodness, were going by snickering and looking at me. My moonlighting hadn't passed unnoticed. This was getting more than embassassing.
I started running again but had to dash over to the side another 2 times. It was heating up and I was feeling worse and worse. I hit the halfway point in 1 hour 26 minutes. This was a horrible, horrible experience but I wasn't going to quit. I was not going to have a DNF. Mile 9 the calf cramps started, probably from being dehydrated. Somehow I dragged myself through to mile 11. One of the spectators was handing out oranges and I considered the chances that this stranger had brushed poison over the oranges hoping to see me throw up some more but I took that chance anyways.
At mile 12 I was one of the most miserable people around, with the exception of Tanya Harding after losing a wrestling match being watched by Nancy Kerrigan. My pace slowed to a slow slog. Mile 12.5 walking was the best I could do. At mile 13 my Garmin beeped and I realized I only had .1 mile to go. I could do anything for .1 mile and starting running again. I would run through the finish line!
Congratulations are in order for my PW (personal worst). 13.1 miles in 3 hours, 13 minutes and 7 long, very long seconds all being very hung over and wearing no panties. A race to remember...actually to forget would be much better. Next time I'll just stand at the Bellagio water fountain and drink in the goodness and happiness of the water show and music.