Any who, it's been requested that I blog a little more often. That's probably not a bad idea, since I run enough races to do so.
|Don't worry, people. I'm already signed up for a zillion races for next year.|
My running friend, Geof, had talked me into running the Route 66 races in Tulsa, OK this year. Then he bailed on me. (For totally valid reasons and there's no hard feelings, I swear. For real, Geof. Stop making that face. You know the face I mean.) So anyway, I find myself in an annoying rental car, navigating my way around the vast, flat state of Oklahoma. I make my way to packet pick up without incident, only to be confronted with the longest line of people I have ever seen. I was starting to wonder if there was going to be sweet roller coaster or Star Wars movie premier at the end of the line.
|Totally worth the wait. If it would have been there. But noooooooo.|
By the time I made it back to my hotel, I was completely knackered and promised myself that I would go nowhere else until race morning. Thank goodness there's such a thing as pizza delivery.
|Hello, Heather. I am your pizza angel, here to save you from further commuting and/or starving to death alone in the Super 8.|
|Artist's rendition of Geof reading this blog. I am not the artist... Thank you, random internet drawer for your image. If I find out who you are, you get all the kudos and credit. Because you totally nailed it.|
|My thoughts, ALL night.|
|You're reading this in a British accent.|
I had learned my lesson from last year that I shouldn't start in the back. I put myself in the first third of the crowd. This was ideal placement, meaning I didn't have to spend ages trying to pass the walkers. I could have finished faster than last year because of this smarty pants move, except that the wind was trying to push us all over.
|At least we were badass rockstars as we got blown all over the roads.|
|I have to say, the swag was pretty worth the frigid temperatures.|
I spent most of the day in the hotel room, working on a crafty project that will be a Christmas gift. (You guys had no idea I did anything other than run races all the time. Your whole perception of me has been blown out of the water! But really, I mostly just run races...)
I was able to go out that evening and meet some internet running friends in real life, Chuck and Kim. It was nice to have dinner with some friendly faces after my nearly two days of isolation and hermitude. (Geof, the face again. Like I don't know you're making it.) Then it was off to bed to rest up for what would be half marathon number 73.
Thankfully, the night was not as windy as the previous and I was able to sleep soundly. I managed to find a parking space in the crowded streets of downtown Tulsa and headed for the corrals. There were so many people. I was in corral C, the second to last corral. I have to say, corrals are a nice system, Again, I didn't have to spend much time trying to pass people, because we were all going about the same pace.
|Waiting for the starting gun!|
|We run past this lovely art museum. They made me feel pretty.|
So I was cruising along with all my fellow corral C-ers, doing my best to avoid the cracks that are ever present on the Tulsa roads. That's really my only complaint about this race. The roads need some serious repair. I took my eyes off the ground for a moment around mile 6 and was rewarded with an ankle tweak. Of course it was the ankle that I injured during Javelina. I managed to tweak it again just after mile 7. That when things really started to be unpleasant. My pace slowed quite a bit as I could feel my ankle starting to swell. I was on track for a decent finish time until then.
|I was walking a lot at this point, so I might as well take a picture of this cool sign. Plus, there was a wizard.|
|Isn't it neat?!|
There is something so amazing about watching people finish a race. You'll see some people that are struggling, every step is agony. Some people have the biggest grins on their faces. You see all shapes and sizes. Old and young. People helping each other along. sometimes being the only thing keeping each other standing up and moving forward. They are all accomplishing something incredible. Running is not an easy thing, and running for hours upon hours is certainly no small feat. So I cry. I dare you not to cry when you witness this for yourself.
|Me, at the finish line. NOT an exaggeration.|
|Not a bad haul, if I do say so myself.|
So, you know how I said that it was cold in Tulsa? It was MUCH colder here. Whee! Race morning greeted us with subzero temperatures (if we're using Celcius, and we should because subzero sounds way better than sub 32 degrees).
|We're trying not to look like we're freezing to death.|
|Scott, rocking the 5K, freezing his booty off.|
|Hey, look! I'm smiling while running. I guess that means I still like it.|
|The shirt has thumb holes. Best shirt ever.|
I'll leave you with that for now, and until next time, happy running!