If all goes according to plan the medal and shirt in the picture will be added to my collection on Halloween later this month. That's right, I'm running the Tulsa Run
again this year.
I know, I know! I can hear some of you thinking right now "Isn't that the race you said you'd never do again?"
Yes, yes it is. But let me explain. (You can read my post from last year here
My recap from last year was definitely an open and honest recap of my experience. But, I've learned a very valuable lesson as a runner/blogger. There are two sides to every story. Luckily for me, I have this blog to share mine. Unlucky for race directors, they typically don't get to share their experiences.
In April, I came home from work to a mystery package in the mail. It was addressed to me from an office in downtown Tulsa. I was so confused at first but when I opened it, I found a Tulsa Run shirt from last years race. I also found a hand written note from the race director. He had read my review on Bibrave
and noticed my comment about my Tulsa Run Shirt Curse and sent me a replacement one! I was immediately impressed with his effort. No race director has ever reached out to me personally to correct something that was wrong. I follow a lot of run blogs and read a lot of race recaps and you just don't hear about things like that.
In the note it also said he would like to discuss the race with me so I emailed him and we set up a tie to meet at a local Starbucks. We spent a little over an hour discussing what happened and what they are doing to fix the problems from last year so they won't be repeated this year.
Here's a quick rundown of issues/updates.
- Last year they ran out of water at water stops on the course.
This year they have invested in HUGE water station systems and the RD feels more than confident that they won't run out of water with this new system. I had the chance to see it at the Tulsa Run kick off and I agree, it should be more then enough.
- They haven't had electrolytes on the course in the past.
This year they will have Gatorade on the course!
- They ran out of water at the finish line last year.
Turns out, someone had locked the keys to the Pepsi truck that was full of bottled water for the finish line in the truck! They ended up tossing a young man over the truck so he could help get everything unlocked and get more water at the finish line. This year more than one set of keys will be handy. :)
- The post-race food at the finish line was less than impressive last year.
This year they have partnered with another company and everyone will receive a box lunch type set up as they walk through the finish line. No waiting on people to fill a plate, no bagel crumbs, just grab your box of food and go. This is similar to what huge races like the Nike Women's Half Marathons do to keep the crowd moving post-race.
So after meeting with the RD in April we've kept in touch here and there over the summer and I'm really impressed with the effort he and his team are putting into the race. After our initial meeting at Starbucks I had already made up my mind that I need to give this race another shot. So I am.
Later this summer I also found out the the Tulsa Run has partnered with BibRave to be a partner race so I've had to opportunity to share a discount code with all of you.
Bibravetr will save you $5 off the 5k or 15k.
After learning about what went down "behind the scenes" last year and hearing about all the effort for improvements they are making this year, I've decided to give the Tulsa Run another shot.
The race is on Halloween this year and I'm thinking I want to wear a costume! What should my costume be this year? I'm taking votes, leave a comment below and give me some ideas!
Question! Have you ever given a race a second chance after a not great experience?