Route 66 Marathon Race Recap – Part 1: Travel and the Expo!

After months and months of marathon training, it’s finally race weekend! Friday morning, I had a symposium for work before we could head out on the road. It was one of those rare occasions where I’m dressed professionally for work, so a selfie must be taken! (Note the Serotonin necklace.) I was able to escape around 2 pm and we were on the road by 3:30. We were staying in Bartlesville at my brother’s house, which is about 45 minutes north of Tulsa, Oklahoma. It’s a loooong drive through Texas and most of Oklahoma, and we ended up arriving at almost 2 am. Super kudos to Adam, who drove most of the way so that I could rest up for the race.

We met up with Mom at the house, slept in a bit, and arrived at the expo around 1 pm. Very quick packet pickup and they let me switch out my jacket ( a nice fleece one) for an x-small since I have short little arms with no hassle. The volunteers were SO nice. I ended up hopping up and down in excitement with the gentleman that handed me my bib. He told me to MAKE SURE I did the Center of the Universe detour. They had SO MANY picture stations. Much to my partner’s chagrin, and everlasting patience, we had to do them all!

Next up: SHOPPING!!!

I bought a new running hat with the Route 66 logo on it. (Not shown below) But the big thing for me is going to all the booths for other races! I NEED TO SEE THE BLING. They usually have some good deals that tempt me into more race signups.

The Route 66 Marathon was my 3rd marathon, but it’s the first that I really felt prepared for. My father had passed away about 6 weeks before my first one. He had told everyone I was running one while he was in chemo. I felt that I really had to go through with it, even though my training had been thrown off by his passing. The second marathon, I did the next year on the same course to raise money in his name for St. Jude. That race, I botched the taper. I didn’t really run the last three weeks before the race. For these first two marathons, I used Hal Higdon’s novice training plan each. I finished each 5:06 and 5:02.

This time was going to be different! I trained using Pfitzinger’s 18/55 plan. This plan started at much higher mileage and had a lot more speedwork. And while I didn’t hit every taper run in the plan, I was much better about keeping to the training plan than in years past. Overall my goal was 4:30 for this race.

As a Route 66 Ambassador this year, the race folks had a treat for us. LULULEMON! I’ve never owned much lululemon, except for a free shirt I earned through a Strava challenge a few years ago. Oh my god, I can see why people love their stuff. The leggings are SO comfortable. and. have. POCKETS. Super special thank you to the Tulsa Lululemon. They also had an awesome cheer station on the course, but that’s for the next post!

I really wanted to wear this new outfit for the race, but I was too scared to wear anything new for race day. However, I’m going to be wearing the crap out of it henceforth. These leggings are amazing.

After the expo, you know I had priorities. We stopped by the Marshall Brewing Company, the oldest craft brewery in Tulsa. Lots of lagers, hefes, and IPAs. I also tried a whisky barrel-aged stout that you could REALLY taste the peat. It was almost like drinking a campfire. They had a beautiful taproom, so go see them if you’re in town!

Mom and I stayed at a hotel downtown, only a few blocks from the starting line. (Super thank you to my Uncle Jerry, who gifted us the hotel points for the stay.) This is probably the first time ever I have just had to get up and go to a race. No driving, no worrying about parking, no worrying about getting into the corral on time. Honestly, it was AMAZING.

I took a hot shower and laid out my stuff for the night….and changed my mind….a few times. This did not actually end up being my outfit the next morning! Needless to say, I was a taaaaad nervous.

This was such a huge weekend, I felt like I needed to split this race recap into two posts. Stay tuned for Part Two of my Route 66 Marathon weekend when I tell you all about the course and the race!!!

Enjoy my race recaps? Read about other races I have attended here!

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