Picture2014 Route 66 Marathon Medal
Before we get too deep into my Route 66 Marathon recap, I won't keep you waiting to see if I reached my goal of a PR and a 4:45 marathon. 

Nope! It didn't happen and that's ok. 

I will say that while I'm a little bummed I didn't get a PR, I know that sometimes you win some and you lose some. This was just not my day and that's how it worked out this time. It just means that there will be another time and another race worthy of a PR! 

I don't regret sharing with my blog buddies what my goal was, albeit an ambitious one. For me, sharing my goal with you all made it real and it made it a solidified plan in my mind and it made it feel doable. I received so much love and encouragement on social medial from all  my fellow BibRave buddies and everyone else before and after the race and that was totally amazing and worth every painful step! My recap below will bring you on the adventure of marathon #5. 

The Bling

PictureRoute 66 2014 Medals
I ALWAYS start with the bling because it's my favorite part of any race and since this is my hometown race, I was able to collect a lot of it this weekend.  Between the Hubbo and I, we bought home 8 pieces of bling and 10 shirts! 

Starting on the top row on the left is my 5K medal. These are a definite improvement from last yeas's 5k medal. It's about the size of my palm! 
The next medal on the top is my Marathon Maniacs medal for finishing the full. This is another cool feature of this race. If you are a Half Fanatic, Marathon Maniac, or 50 State runner, and if you register in time, you can get a special medal that shows your club affiliation! The leaves on the outside of medal actually spin which is a cool feature of this large medal! 

The smaller coin on the bottom row is my volunteer coin for helping out at the Expo on Friday. I took a shift of handing out bibs and a shift of handing out shirts and had a blast meeting most of the runners! 

The red and blue coin in this picture is my coin for completing the Center of The Universe Detour. Two years ago when I ran this marathon for the first time the CoU detour was around mile 17, but this time it was after mile 25 and I love that they moved it! 


The Center of The Universe Detour

PicturePhoto Cred: Route66Marathon.com
One of the little extra things that makes this race special is the optional detour that runners can take around mile 25.5. If you want to, you can elect to run up to the Center of The Universe which is famously located here in Tulsa and if you do, you get an extra coin and you get the bragging rights of running the World's Shortest Ultra, a 26.5 mile  race! 

The CoU is an architectural anomaly that is a cement circle and if you stand in the middle of it and talk normal, your voice will echo all around you, but those outside the circle can't hear the echos! I've done it before and it's kinda crazy! 

Technically, I've ran more ultra marathons than I've ran regular marathons since 3 of my marathons have been over 26.2 miles. According to some runner's opinion, an ultra is typically a minimum of 50K and up and I've only ran one of those. 

The Course

Picture
It's no secret that this course isn't flat. Most people will describe it as challenging but not impossible. It definitely has a lot of rolling hills because that is how most of Tulsa is built. It is a course you can PR on and BQ but you have to work for it. You have to train for some rolling hills if you are going to do this race. 
The course also shows off some of best parts of Tulsa including Cherry Street, Brookside, Midtown, TU, and Downtown Tulsa all in one race. It's definitely a good representation of our city. 

The Expo

PictureBart Yasso at Route 66 2014
This expo is one of my favorite expos of any race I've been to. I've been to OKC, Garmin, Little Rock, and a few others and this one is still my favorite. I even volunteered at the Expo on Friday handing out bibs and then shirts. 
This expo is in a space that is big enough to roam around and it's not crowded at all. There are also plenty of vendors there from races, to Addaday, to KINDBars, to many others. 
They also have extras that make this race special, like Bart Yasso speaking at the Expo, a Blogger's Panel which yours truly got to be a part of this year, and they even collected old running shoes to donate this year. 

My Experience

PictureThe Hubbo and I in our matching Maniac Shirts!
I knew when the Hubbo and I completed the 5k on Saturday that the marathon was going to be a little hotter and harder than I would like. I think I say this in EVERY SINGLE BLOG post, but I'm not a hot weather runner. I'll take 30 degrees over 60 degrees any day! Especially a race day. On Sunday before we even got to the starting line it was 58* and 93% humidity. Not good for this Ginger. Some people thrive in this type of weather and that's good. Everyone has a different ideal race temps. But from what I heard from my running buddies, it was a tough day for everyone. 

Looking back, I really should have realigned my race goals and started with the 5:00 hour pacer, but I decided to go with my original plan of going with the 4:45 pacer and shoot for the best I could do.
I managed to hang with that pace for 10 miles, but around mile 4, I was completely drenched in sweat and knew I wouldn't be able to hang for another 22.5 miles at that pace. 

Around mile 10 at a water stop my running buddy Tara and I left the pacer and our other friends Roy and Paul and decided to slow it down. That was good for a while then we started doing run walk intervals. At mile 20 Tara was ready to run it in so we parted ways. Around mile 21 I started getting cramps in my foot and my right quad. They would literally stop me in my tracks and I'd have to sit down on the curb to stretch them out before I could keep walking.  It was not cute. 
I was hunched over on a curb stretching and a fellow maniac came upon me and asked if I was alright, I let him know I was fine just battling some fun cramps. He told me he couldn't tell if I was stretching or curled up in a ball crying on the side of the road. Looking back, it must have totally looked like I was curled up in an upright fetal position when he came up on me. Also, not cute! 

I managed to limp my way through miles 21-23 and somewhere after that I ran into my running buddy Amber. We had lost each other around mile 4. I have never been so happy to see someone I knew in a race! I just needed someone to help me take my mind off the pain.
Not only was I dealing with the cramps but my feet hurt like hell! I'd stop to walk because I was hot or cramping and all the blood would drain down in my feet until it was too painful to walk. The only thing that helped that feeling go away was to run, but every time I ran, I'd get a cramp. It was a vicious cycle. My feet even got numb and tingly at one point. Again, not cute! 
We managed to run/walk our way to the finish line.
Despite all the heat, humidity, hills, cramping, walking, and stopping to stretch I managed to run my 2nd fastest marathon in 5:43:20. 

More Pics from Route 66

PictureRunning Buddies Tara and Tom!
My running buddy and fellow Okie, Tom, took this photo around mile 14ish. Look at how wet my hair is with sweat and how red my face is! That should tell you that it was a warm one for me! 

Picture
Roy, Paul, Tara and I in the corral and ready to go! 
I saw so many people over dressed for this race. So many turtle necks on under singlets, so many long tights and running jackets and gloves. My running club subscribes to the saying "dress like it is 20* warmer than what the temperature says."
So if the temp is 57* outside, dress like it is 77* outside. I wouldn't be wearing a running jacket, and gloves when it's almost 80*! 

Questions! Have you ever gone for a PR and Missed it? 
Does your hometown race have any fun "extras" like the Route 66 Detour?

 


Comments

Steve
11/24/2014 3:42pm

A bigger surprise for me at the finish line was how many people still had on their jackets when the crossed - both the halfers and the full marathon finishers!

Great job gutting out this race, Sarah - so proud of you!

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RunGingerRun - Sarah
11/25/2014 5:43pm

Thanks Steve! Sorry I missed you at the finish line! We'll need to volunteer together at a race soon!

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Amber
11/24/2014 4:11pm

As much as I love this race, this year was tough. You did awesome toughing it out!! My favorite part was finding you and getting a HUG then running in with you.

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RunGingerRun - Sarah
11/25/2014 5:45pm

That was my favorite part too! We won't mention the hug to anyone, gotta keep my street cred up! Thanks for finding me and running me in!

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11/24/2014 4:41pm

Wow what a race you had! I just read somewhere that you're not really a marathoner until you have a really tough race that tests you. I don't know if that's true but if it is, then boy did you graduate on that one. The tough ones happen Sarah. It's just the way it is but you stepped up, fought, overcame and finished... at a pretty decent time too.

As for your question, I spent pretty much all of this year missing the mark on pretty much every race I ran. Can't win 'em all I guess. But when you do achieve your goal, those misses make it that much sweeter.

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RunGingerRun - Sarah
11/25/2014 5:44pm

Thanks for the awesome encouragement Frank! And congrats again on your half at Philly! You did awesome out there!

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Tara
11/24/2014 6:06pm

So glad you and Amber found each other! :)

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RunGingerRun - Sarah
11/25/2014 5:46pm

Thanks Tara! Congrats on your first full! Sorry to slow you down but I appreciated the company for 20 miles! :)

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11/24/2014 7:20pm

Little Rock is my hometown race. The fun things there are hills and giant medals

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RunGingerRun - Sarah
11/25/2014 5:46pm

Yes! I've ran LR before and agree that medal is GIANT and AWESOME! The hills on the other hand... :)

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11/24/2014 9:01pm

Awesome job! I knew the R66 did the detour, but I didn't know it was the smallest ultra! haha. That's funny. Woo for 5 marathons!

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RunGingerRun - Sarah
11/25/2014 5:48pm

Thanks! Marathon #6 is just 2.5 weeks away!

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11/24/2014 9:10pm

Congrats on your finish! It was such a touch day with the warmer temps and humidity. I'm a cold weather lover like you! Everytime I passed someone with a heavy vest or coat on, I just want to stop them and tell them to ditch the clothing now!! I missed a PR by a long shot too so I feel your pain. But I'm already looking to sign up for next year since I loved the race so much!

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RunGingerRun - Sarah
11/25/2014 5:49pm

So glad I'm not alone on this weather thing. I know everyone has their own idea of the perfect race weather, but many of my running buddies said it was a tough one! Congrats to you on finishing a tough one!

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11/24/2014 9:47pm

It was great seeing you and running "with" you while I did. :-)

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RunGingerRun - Sarah
11/25/2014 5:50pm

Yes! I'm so glad you caught us! Sorry we couldn't hang on very long. Congrats on your race!

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11/25/2014 5:45am

Great race. I love the center if the universe detour. I've never heard of that. I have gone for pr's and not made it. When I was tring to break 2 hours in a half - it took several tries.

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RunGingerRun - Sarah
11/25/2014 5:52pm

I'll definitely give it another try. Not at the Honolulu marathon because I know that one will be HOT and Humid as well but that's just a fun destination race for us. I also want to break 2 hours in a half, someday! Congrats on your sub 2hr half!

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11/26/2014 7:30am

The Center of the Universe Detour is so cool, I've never heard of something like it. I would definitely do it just so I could say that I ran an ultra-marathon. ;)
My hometown race is the Detroit marathon. It doesn't have any extra medals or excursions, but it does go through two countries, over a bridge to Canada, and back the the US through a tunnel. I think it's pretty cool!

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RunGingerRun - Sarah
11/28/2014 9:47am

Detroit marathon sounds awesome! I had a running buddy from Tulsa do it this year and she loved it!

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11/27/2014 10:55am

Great recap, Sarah! Sorry to hear about the cramps and the tough end of the race. Boooo.

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RunGingerRun - Sarah
11/28/2014 9:49am

Thanks Clarinda! The whole time I kept thinking how this would have been the perfect year for you since you like the heat!

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11/27/2014 9:34pm

Great race report. Sorry you were hurting like you were but you still made it by gutting it out. You really participated this year.

I felt like I missed a big event. I ran the half this year and was considering it this year but I knew after the Tulsa Run that it would not be wise to do the Route 66. Maybe next year.

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RunGingerRun - Sarah
11/28/2014 9:54am

Thanks Alan! It was a tough one but we'll be back next year! We already signed up for the 5k + Half.

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