Wednesday, October 31, 2012

My Change of Plans for RnRLV

A few weeks ago, I answered the question that everyone is asking me - will I race Rock n Roll Vegas this year?

I have always said, I would only run that event as a Pacer.  When I posted my answer, there were no pacers for the event.

That has changed.

I am the official Vegas Half 2:15 Pacer

Before anyone starts throwing fiery darts or tomatoes at me - please allow me to explain my decision

My focus has and always will be runner safety.  That has not changed.  I volunteered to be a Half Pacer, for the racers.  This is not a race for me - I will GLADLY give up my swag & my Finisher Medal, to ensure another racer has one.

As a pacer - my focus is razor sharp:  To help racers achieve their goals of finishing by 2:15. 

My personal PR is 1:44:16 - achieved less than a year ago.  I am consistently a sub2 Half Marathoner.  Running a 2:15 is not an issue to me. I will give it my 100% focus to ensure the runners in my pace group reach the Promised Land.  That is a job, I take very seriously. 

I know many racers will never understand my choice and some will believe I selling out or changing my standards.  They are wrong.  My standards are just as high as they were a year ago, and that is why I am pacing in this event.  I am a Certified Running Coach and a Vegas citizen - I cannot turn my back on the multitude of racers coming to my city. 

  • To my running buddies:    This past year, you held me up, you cheered me on and brought me back to life.  Literally. As I cross the Start Line with a pacing group behind's a victory for us all and proof we ALL can rise above any circumstance.  We are defeated, if we quit.  I did not quit and I won't.  Thank you for not letting me quit.

  • To those in my pace group - thank you in advance for trusting me with your goals.  I will do everything with my own power to ensure your safety and give you an experience of a lifetime.  I am not just a runner with a Garmin, I will be your Coach for 2 hours and 15 minutes.  I will guide you when to fuel, hydrate and cheer you on.  When we cross that Finish Line together...we ALL Celebrate!  I can't wait to see the Finisher Medal around your neck!  

To help you train & prepare, here are my previous blog posts:

  • To Clark County Government (Las Vegas) - thank you for listening to us and for your efforts this past year.  It has not gone unnoticed.

  • And finally, to CGI/RnR - We all make mistakes, I will be the first to admit to the mistakes I have made in my own life. No one is immune to making mistakes.  The key is how we respond to those mistakes, agreed?  We can either be bitter enemies or unite and give the racers the experience they deserve on December 2nd.  I prefer to be united, I believe the racing community deserves it.

(c) C. Ragsdale 2010-12
Run F.A.B.,

Charlene L. Ragsdale - Las Vegas, NV
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  1. Sounds like a lot of fun! I do not understand though why anyone would be upset with you for being a pacer - I think anyone who is putting themselves out there saying "follow me and I'll get you there at this time" should be given mondo kudos! :)

    1. Amber, there were significant issues with this race in 2011 & I was very vocal about the problems. No one suspected I would be willing to participate in this event, again. Moving onward to bigger and more important things = racer goals. Thanks for commenting! :)

    2. I did remember all those issues, of course AFTER I hit "publish"... :) I would certainly hope that they have corrected those for this year. Like you say.. onward and upward -- run on! :)

  2. Well Rock on sister...I personally will NOT participate in the RnR LV race again thanks to last year's HORRID event. But I know you're about the runner and not the race and will be the FIRST person to speak up if runner safety is ever an issue. Go motivate...

    1. Thanks for your support of my decision. I completely understand you not wanting to run it. I am not running this for ME - it's all about the other racers. My thoughts, my feelings, experiences from last year do not apply on that night. Safety is always my focus, it will never change. :)

  3. I think it is awesome that you are willing to go as a Pacer. It will give them a chance to try and prove themselves and you a chance to encourage, and help others succeed in their endeavor.

  4. How did you get them to change their minds about pacers? Did they come to you as an act of concilliation over last year?

    1. Hi, I had nothing to do with developing the pacer team for RnRLV. The Pacer Coordinator (local RD) is a good friend of mine and is the point of contact with RnR regarding pacers, not me. I have not communicated with RnR regarding pacers. Hope that clarifies.

  5. Thank you for making the runners your 1st priority. As a 1st time half marathoner (there are a lot of us), we heard the issues with #RnRLV & decided to run anyway. We all make mistakes and need the opportunity to do better. I know personally, I'm scared to run my 1st one and I get lifted up by the pacers & coaches out there who give encouragement & advice. So thank you for putting aside your personal feelings and making the event safe & a positive memory. If you know the pacer for 3:30 - tell him to be on the look out for me :)-

    1. Kristi - it's my pleasure and it really wasn't an option for me. I have always put the runners first and to sit back and let this event happen without me, would of been wrong. I don't believe there is a 3:30 Half Pacer. Hope to see you there! Run smart and safe!


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