Oklahoma City Memorial Half Marathon recap

30 04 2014

Where to begin ? Do I go straight to the weather or start at the expo? Oh, just get prepared for a LONG post

Saturday-
We decide to make this a husband and wife trip. The kids were staying with grandparents, we woke up early (as usual) went out to breakfast. Then Morgan had to pack. Who waits until the morning we are leaving to pack? Oh, a guy. Luckily I had washed every.single.dirty.thing.in.the.house. (Did the periods between each word work for dramatic effect?)

Luckily the drive to OKC is easy. We were starving once we made it, and my navigational skills found a Panera about 12 minutes from the hotel, I’m pretty sure there was a closer one, but whatever. We checked in to the Skirvin. It’s the oldest hotel in the city , it’s supposedly haunted, and it is awesome!

20140428-220055.jpgimage from okc metro daily photo
The Pioneer Woman has a review of the hotel!

Then we went to the expo. It was remarkably un-crowded. Morgan was on the hunt for cliff bars, and we could not find any. We didn’t stay too long, and headed back to the hotel. I had a killer headache, and we had a race the next day, so we just hung out, drank water and watched movies on HBO. I enjoyed Die Another Daywhile Morgan snoozed.

We ran to CVS (shameless plug for my store) to get cliff bars…and Gatorade, and kind bars, and applesauce and cashews.

I ran into Fran, a Swirlgear athlete. I was kinda creepy… I stopped her in the revolving door! We took a picture while waiting for the car (I was still dealing with my raging headache, I was guzzling coffee trying to get it to go away.)

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The Skirvin was one of the official pasta dinners of the race. They had a Buffett in the restaurant, and it was very well priced. There was a Caesar salad, and mixed green salad, an AMAZING berry salad, and fruit. Then three kinds of pasta, three sauces and three protein choices ( steak, chicken or salmon). We also ordered calamari, everything was very good. And we just had to hop on the elevator and we were back in our comfy room.

I feel asleep early, and slept GREAT.

Sunday-
The race was set to begin at 630am, so we set our alarm for 530. We had a 5 minute walk to the start line! There had been talk of bad weather, so we got up and checked the news…a severe thunderstorm was headed right towards downtown Oklahoma City. The race was delayed 30 minutes, then an hour, then 8am was start time. We eventually started the race at 820am, nearly 2 hours late…and I AM THANKFUL! A little before 8 it was pouring, hailing, thundering, lightening. Had the race started at 630, I would have been stuck in that. Tons of runners were in parking garages, under awnings, or any shelter they could find. I did wear a trash bag while walking to the start, I wanted to stay dry.

The weather
The race started very humid. The storm had passed, but it left a ton of moisture in the air. I was sweating very quickly, and I wore a long sleeved shirt, not my brightest move.

I ran with a pace group for several miles, when I was I’m the clump of people I was very uncomfortable. When I got out of the group, there was a nice breeze. The sun ended up coming out , and the humidity seemed to go away, but it was pretty warm, and I didn’t bring sunglasses or wear sunscreen. I didn’t have to deal with wind, but for the marathoners, the wind got pretty brutal (and it was in their face)later in the day .

The course
I’m not very good with directions/landmarks/directions in OKC.

The race starts by the memorial. There are 168 of silence before the start, in memory of those killed 19 years ago. It is very moving.

We ran by the Capitol, then through some neighborhoods. I tried to take a picture of the Capitol.

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It’s behind the trees!

The half and full run together until mile 7 ish. Then it got confusing. I’m pretty sure I never saw mile 10. The full meets up at like mile 23, but then goes off again, then comes back. I had a hard time, mentally, in the last half, because I was confused. I wasn’t sure how much longer I had to run, I thought I was a mile further than I was. It was discouraging. I saw mile 12, and I knew only 1.1 miles left!

The course had a few hills, one is called Gorilla Hill. It is lined with people, they had signs, bananas, and it’s a big deal…but I didn’t think it was a bad hill- I’ve seen worse!

Support
The race was very well supported! People were EVERYWHERE. Since there are a lot of neighborhoods, people are out in their front yard, cheering and handing out food-pretzels, bananas, oranges, strawberries, grapes! One lady said she liked my skirt 🙂

Water and powerade stopes were plentiful. In the last 2 miles there were an abundance of stops. I don’t know if there was a mixup, or if companies set up their own, but it was like every 1/2 a mile-Water!

My race
I finished in 2:19:11. I struggled from mile 10-12.5. I don’t know if it was all mental, the weather, breakfast too early, trying to push to early? I saw Morgan near the finish and he gave me a boost. I had something left in the tank, I wish I had kicked it up earlier! You can’t PR every race, some races are slower than others. I am proud of my finish!

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The hotel was a few minutes from the finish, I was very excited to shower, and all runners had late checkout at 3pm. We didn’t stay that late. But we did grab a burger before heading home.

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The Breakfast a Burger from Brucktown Brewery- a burger with hash browns, a fried egg, bacon and cheese . It was GOOD.

I would like to run this race next year. It will be the 20th anniversary of the bombing and 15th race. And I’ll stay at the Skirvin, everything was wonderful!

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