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Oklahoma City Memorial Half Marathon Recap!

Warning: Long post ahead!
I want to remember it all, so I wrote a lot of details! :)
This past Sunday, April 27, 2014, I ran my 3rd half!
It's been a year since I ran the distance, and my body could tell! 
My friend, Becky, and I started the weekend off by driving up to Oklahoma with our daughters. It was only a 3 hour drive, but my child refused to nap until we were almost there, so that made for a long...loud...trip! We all survived and made it to the Expo to pick up our race packets! Apparently, some sort of Art festival was also going on right next door to the expo, so parking was a nightmare. We picked up our packets, walked a bit around the expo, didn't find anything we had to have, and then left!
We stopped at the Art Festival and let the kids have some sweet treats and sat next to the water, where it was nice and pretty. :)

We then went to the hotel and checked in! It was such a nice place!
I had a gorgeous view from my room! :)

The picture doesn't do it justice! 
We got word from the concierge that it may rain and hail that night and let us know they had parking garage for us to park under. That was our first hint of what was to come...

After checking in, we went to dinner!
We decided Pizza sounded great and Becky was familiar with a Pizza place that she said was really good. 

It was soooo good! I know it sounds crazy, but I'm not the biggest fan of Tomato Sauce.
Well, they had an olive oil and garlic sauce they put on the chicken, bacon, cheese pizza and let me just say...I almost devoured the entire small pizza by myself! It was soooooo good! It was a great pre-run carb up! :)

We then went back to the hotel, where we got ready for bed and our husbands showed up.
They were the babysitters for the next morning while we ran! :)

We both got a horrible night's rest. We are pretty sure the air was out in the entire hotel. My hubby and I had the air on 60 and we only had a sheet on the bed by morning, and we were still sweating! It was frustrating! So Becky and I both had only a couple of hours of interrupted sleep. Our girls decided to do a good job of waking us up as well.

We made it to the shuttle stop the next morning around 5:25. While standing there, we got rained on. The shuttle finally showed up close to 6. The race started at 6:30. We made it to the race at about 6:28. .We didn't stress about not making it on time, because we had heard on the shuttle from someone checking facebook that the race was already delayed until 7am.

When we got there, we were told to go into a parking garage and wait out the storm that was over us.
So we sat in a parking garage while watching some of the other runners and spectators run around in the rain waiting to hear when the race would start.

We received another delay time of 7:15. Then 7:45. Then 8. We saw plenty of lighting while sitting in there. No one could even get a cell signal out. We found out later that the OKC Marathon website had crashed while everyone was on waiting for updates. I finally got one text out to Becky's husband saying it was delayed start. Later, I found out my hubby had seen it on the news that morning. Finally at 8AM they said 15 more minutes. Everyone headed to the entrance of the parking garage to get out of there. The wind had picked up even more at this time and it was almost cold. But still very humid. 

We heard them start the race and Becky and I did not cross over the start line until 8:30. It was a big mess at the start, but at least we got to go!

I was questioning everything at this point. I had only had a banana that morning, thinking I would be almost done by 8:30. I was beginning to get hungry!I kept saying, we should just do the 5K! Only half joking! :)

Then we were off! Becky took off, since she is super fast.
I started off slow, knowing I didn't have much energy to begin with and didn't want to use it all in the first mile. I ran the first mile. Then started my 1 min run, 1 min walk intervals. I did those for the next 4 miles. I stopped around mile 4 for a potty break. That seemed to be the only one I needed! Even with all of the water and Gatorade I was drinking. 

I was very fortunate that they had so many water stations. Plus they had banana's oranges, and the occasional pretzel at so many of the water stops! 

I still had a bad headache at the end though. I could tell I was a bit dehydrated. After the clouds and rain passed, it got hot. Quickly. And the sun was beating down. Several of the spectators in the neighborhoods actually turned their sprinklers on for us! It was really nice!

This was the race with truly the BEST spectators I have seen or heard at a race! I know it was only my 3rd, but there was some serious support out there! Screaming, cowbells, sprinklers, people handing out chocolate! It was really, really great!

I made 2 friends a long the way. One of them was walking her 2nd OKC Half. She had her daughter and a friend with her, but they were both running and had left her behind. They were all 3 twinkies and matched in bright green, so when I saw her daughter and friend at the finish line, I knew she was with them and told them that she wasn't far behind me! We had just made it up and down a hill together, when she said "I think that's the last hill! Now watch, there will be a big one as soon as we turn the next corner."  Sure enough, we turned a corner and there was another big one! We laughed at that and then quickly realized it was not even close to the last one!

The other friend, this was her first half! She was doing so good and she actually passed me at the end! I even saw her at the finish and got to congratulate her on her first half! 

After mile 5, I mostly walked. I would run down every single hill (and yes there were SEVERAL) and I know that saved my time some. I just had to take advantage of the downhills! Those up hills were killin me! 

The scenery was beautiful, and it really ended up being a gorgeous day, except for the wind. We got to run right towards their Capital building!

At the finish, I gave it my all and pushed through. 
I was so happy to run over that line and get that medal!
I felt it was definitely a medal earned that day!

As we walked through the finisher chute, They had a huge spread of food!
I had myself 2 E.L. Fudge cookies, a rice crispie treat, and a couple of vanilla wafers. It was all so yummy! Later I found out they had cheeseburgers too, but that didn't exactly sound good at the time. lol :)

At the end of the chute, you walked towards the Memorial for all those who lost their lives on April 19, 1995. It was very moving and I loved seeing all of the runners who were dedicating their runs to the victims or victims families. 

There were 26,000 runners who crossed the finish line that day. 
And I know they all had the memorial on their mind.

I forgot to mention that I was so afraid that my phone was going to die, that I did not take a single picture. I took it out 3 times. Once to text Becky's husband at the beginning about the delay. (I was already at 88% battery and I hadn't even touched my phone since I took it off the charger at 5:20AM) Once at mile 6.5 to tell my husband that I was half way done and that I was at 66% battery and I would not be answering texts, and then at the finish to tell Becky I was done. I was at 44% at this time. Then I got lost trying to go to the shuttles and ended up 5 blocks away from the shuttles. So that's 10 blocks I had to walk to finally find the shuttles. Yes, 10 more blocks after just finishing 13 miles. I was in so much pain. I was not a happy camper by this point. I finally found the shuttle and got on and was just so happy to be sitting. I texted Becky that I found the shuttle and returned 2 texts and my battery was at 41% and it died. Also forgot to mention that my on/off button doesn't work either. So I was out of luck until I made it to the hotel.

When I reached the hotel, Becky, her daughter and my daughter were right in front getting some things out of their van. I got to walk off the shuttle and see my little girls pretty smile! It made all that pain go away! :)

I went up to the hotel room, took a shower and started to feel so much better.
Becky took the girls down to swim in the hotel pool, while I got ready to go.
Sophie had a BLAST!

After they wore themselves out swimming, we headed home!
Sophie took a great nap then! 
It was a great and fast 2 days!

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  1. Awesome job! I loved reading your recap. Btw, your phone sounds JUST like mine. A lot of time it'll die before my race even starts, even if I haven't used it once! So annoying.
    Glad you had a good run, despite all the delays and the bad weather!


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