Route 66 Half Marathon - RunHalf Marathon

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Tulsa, Oklahoma
United States
Tulsa Route 66 Marathon, Inc.
40F / 4C
Total Time = 2h 43m 10s
Overall Rank = /
Age Group =
Age Group Rank = 0/
Pre-race routine:

Boy did I make the right call on the hotel. We were staying 100 yards from the starting line. Had a 7am wakeup call, but we were both awake by 6. Just sorta laid around waiting for 7. Got up and had a Clif bar (Shannon ate hers in bed...what a bum) then a quick shower to wake up.

Like the good OCD-infected freak that I am, I had everything laid out for the both of us in the order that we would put it on. I need help...anyway, got dressed and ready to go. I went with tights and shorts on bottom, then on top I did my undershirt, my Nike long sleeve running shirt, and the Brooks running jacket I bought at the expo. Plus my gloves. Wore the jacket so I could hold all the junk in it - room key, 2 packs of Shot Blocks, 1 package of Sport Beans, and 5 gels. Since I was running with Shannon, I was going to make it as easy as possible for her.

The night before I had called down to the front desk, and they said we could have a late checkout at 2pm instead of noon. Bonus! So no need to get packed up. Sweet. 30 minutes before the start we headed downstairs. Man did I pick a good hotel.
Event warmup:

Milled around, got a spot in the corrals behind the 5:00 pace group. Could tell I was overdressed as it was about 40 degrees - was expecting it to be 30 or so. Not that I was upset, I just knew I was going to get hot fast. Oh well.

Spent the next few minutes getting Shannon ready. Strategy, pace, nutrition, etc. She was going to wear the Garmin and I'd wear my Timex watch. Good thing, because as soon as she turned on the Garmin, it said Low Battery. Apparently it had gotten turned on somehow in the suitcase. In the end, it lasted till 11.5 miles, so it wasn't a super-big deal. But I need to make sure to take my plug in charger to Vegas.
  • 2h 43m 10s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 12m 28s  min/mile

As most of you know, this wasn't my race. It was Shannon's. She did Austin in February in 3:06. The goal for this race was 2:45. The plan was to do 8 minutes of running followed by 2 minutes of walking.

The first 5K went by fast. I could tell I was used to my Garmin, because I kept forgetting to hit my lap button. Otherwise I would have all the splits other than what the chip times provided us. Anyway, we crossed the river once, made a couple of lefts, and then crossed back over. Shannon was doing great. After the 2nd mile, it started to get warm. Shannon took off her gloves and hat. I took off my gloves and shoved it all in my jacket. That didn't work, so I just put all of it in the hat and carried the hat. By then we were already to the 5K marker. Well ahead of pace. A few years ago, a 34 minute 5K time would have been a good race; today it was just the first split.

We pretty much were cruising along the next 5K. With the 8/2 strategy, we kept passing the 5:00 pace group when we ran, then they would pass us when we walked. I was doing my job, being as encouraging as I could without being annoying. That became quite a challenge. At the 4 mile mark a local guy named Robert started running with us. It was his first half, so we were glad to have him join us.

Hit the 10K mark still way ahead of schedule. In fact, we were 3 minutes faster than Shannon's fastest 10K. She was rocking and rolling. Robert was doing well too. And a few minutes later we were halfway home.

Kept a decent pace through mile 9. We were starting to have to walk a little bit more, but I was hoping we had banked enough time on the downhill stretches early that it wouldn't matter. In mile 9 we passed a house with some obviously toasted folks in their 20s. Devo's "Whip it" was playing nice and loud. Sensing the moment, I gave Shannon a few "whips" to the rear with her hat. Anything to keep her spirits up.

Mile 10 was way long. And it was pretty discouraging. I kept looking at my watch thinking we had missed the marker somehow. 13 minutes, 14, 15, 16...ended up about 17 minutes. Garmin, before it went out, had it at 1.4 miles. Nice.

Ok, only 5K to go. But I could tell Shannon was struggling. Toes were hurting, her knee was starting to hurt, and she was just starting to not have fun. I kept looking at my watch trying to figure out how fast we would have to hit the last 3 miles. It was agonizing.

Didn't help that we were getting into the uphill section. It was killing Shannon to run up the hills, so we had to walk a lot. That, in turn, was killing me. I knew we were so close to her goal time. It was gut check time. We dropped Robert in mile 11. That sucked, but we had a time to meet. He ended up at 2:50.

Mile 12 was very undulating and Shannon was not having fun. It was all I could do to get her to walk quickly up the hills and jog down them. I ran in front of her trying to get her to run with me, encouraging her to keep pushing the entire time. That was when she found her sense of humor. We passed a girl that asked Shannon if she wanted something to throw at me. Shannon laughed and said that she might throw her.

At the end of mile 12 there was a nice, long downhill. I knew if we were going to have any shot at 2:45, we had to make up some time on it. I forced her to run all the way down. Walked the fine line between pleading, encouraging, and yelling at her to run. One look at her face I could tell she was running on fumes and was on the point of puking. From personal experience, I knew she felt awful, but that she'd regret it like crazy if she missed her time now. We were so close.

Bad news was it was all uphill as far as I could see. Got to a point where I could see our hotel. At that point it was all pleading. I could tell she had nothing left, but I knew adrenaline would kick in if we could just make it a little farther. Out of nowhere, the 26 mile mark showed up with 2:40 on my watch. That meant mile 13 was .1 away, and .1 from that was the finish.

I could see the relief on her face. We were going to make it. I let her have one more brief walk break, and then it was go time. Adrenaline definitely kicked in. We cruised to the finish, almost 2 minutes faster than scheduled. Yes!
What would you do differently?:

Charge the fraking Garmin.

1 less layer of clothes on top.

Other than that, nothing. We paced it just right so we were able to attack the last mile and hit the goal time.
Post race
Warm down:

Posed together with our finisher medals. Walked around getting Shannon some water and a smoothie. Didn't want her cramping up. Hit the finisher's food tent and grabbed us each a bagel and banana. I grabbed 2 chocolate chip cookies for myself.

A reporter from the Tulsa World followed us into the food tent and talked to us for 10 minutes or so. Maybe tomorrow we'll be famous.

Then it was up to the hotel for a shower and to relax before heading to McNellie's to meet Robyn (triOK), her husband Zach, and friend Jennifer. Had dinner with them the night before, so we figured we might as well do lunch too. Robyn did great on her marathon - 4:25. Jennifer did that half, but I didn't hear her time. Anyway, McNellie's was an awesome place for a brew. Next time it won't be one made with coffee though - Fuller's London Porter. Take away the coffee flavor and it would have been awesome. Robyn's Klaster Dark was awesome.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Nothing. Not my race. It was Shannon's.

Event comments:

For a first time race, I was very impressed. Pretty small (3000 or so), but there were lots of volunteers along the course. And they went all out. Vintage warplane flyover, gel handout at miles 5 and 8, great food tent. I was very impressed.

Last updated: 2006-10-16 12:00 AM
02:43:10 | 13.1 miles | 12m 28s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 0/
Performance: Good
Mile 1 - 10:35 (146 HR) Mile 2 - 10:45 (137 HR) Mile 3 - 11:54 (137 HR) 5K split - 34:48 Mile 4 - 12:01 (135 HR) Mile 5 - 12:21 (131 HR) Mile 6 - 12:19 (127 HR) 10K - 1:13:15 Mile 7 - 12:01 (128 HR) Mile 8 - 12:27 (120 HR) 14K split - 1:43:55 Mile 9 - 12:48 (119 HR) Mile 10 - 13:33 (116 HR) Mile 11 - 14:19 (126 HR) Mile 12 - 12:13 (no HR data) Mile 12.73 (Garmin died) - 9:48 (no HR data)
Course: Fairly flat, scenic route along the river. Last 2 miles had lots of hills.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Too much
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 5
Physical exertion [1-5] 5
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5