OKC Memorial Half Marathon Recap

Hi Everyone!! I hope you all had a great weekend!  I ran the OKC Memorial Half Marathon Sunday!  Then I spent the rest of the day with my feet propped up napping!  Before we get to the actual race, let me get you all caught up. 

To read more about the history of the race, click here.  

Last week was all about resting, fueling, and hydrating.  My foot was still bothering me, so I didn’t run all week.  I stayed off my foot as much as I could and by race day it wasn’t as sore.  Saturday morning we got up early and headed to Oklahoma City to go to the race expo. 

We stopped on the way so I could get something to eat.  We ate at Steak and Shake and I had a burger and fries.  It was delicious!  (Something that I don’t normally eat, so I enjoyed every bite!)

We got to the expo around noon.  I picked up my packet and we spent about an hour walking through and checking out all the booths. 

I stocked up on some Nuun and have been drinking it like crazy since the race was over.

There was a ton of stuff to look at and booths to shop at.  

We probably could’ve spent all day in there.  

After that we headed back to Norman to our cousin’s house.  It was Macy’s prom and we went to help her get ready and take pictures!  She was gorgeous! 

After the pictures, we headed over to Academy.  I had packed some warm clothes but I just wasn’t sure what I wanted to wear.  The weather had been showing rain and cold..then no rain, just cold and windy and I just couldn’t make up my mind about what I was wearing.  So, I ended up shopping for a new shirt.  We shopped for awhile.  Jeremy could stay in there all day!  I got a new shirt for the race.

We stopped at Louie’s for dinner.  I ordered a turkey, bacon, and Swiss croissant.  I ate about half of it and was ready for bed! 

I seriously couldn’t keep my eyes open.  When we got back to our cousin’s, I was in bed and asleep by 8:30.  I think that is the earliest I have ever gone to bed before a race.  I had a little cuddler that was keeping me awake.  This is Sally.  She laid right on top of me and kept licking my face.  When I pushed her off, she laid next to me with her head on my pillow.

She finally moved beside me and I don’t know how long she stayed there.  I actually slept really well.  Usually before a race I wake up about every 30-45 minutes because I’m afraid I’ll miss my alarm. 

I got up at 4:00 am and ate some eggs and toast.  The same breakfast I ate before all of my long runs.   When I got downstairs to fix my breakfast, I found a skillet out waiting for me and my cousin had left me this note! 

We left to head to the race at 5:15 and on the way I had some O2 Gold and Spark and half of a Cliff bar. 

I found my dad and we got in the corral around 6:15. 

It was sooooo cold!!!

They had the 168 seconds of silence for all of the victims of the OKC bombing.  After the Star Spangled Banner, it was time to go! 

I never got nervous about this race like I normally do.  I felt ready!  But, I was freezing!  It was 41 degrees and the wind was blowing like crazy!  Once we started going I warmed up and it didn’t bother me so much at first.

I took a ton of pictures while I was running and hoped that some would turn out.  I actually got several good ones! 

The first mile was pretty slow because there were so many people!  This was the 17th year for this race and it was the biggest yet!  There were 25,731 runners – all 50 states were represented, as well as 13 countries.  Because of the amount of people running, I never felt like it “thinned” out like it normally does.  I felt like I was running in a pack the entire time, but that did help me to run faster and keep going. 

After the first mile, we settled in to a pretty good pace!  We went past the capital.  These pictures didn’t come out to great.  But, I love all the flags!

My dad stayed right behind me for the first 5 miles.  Around mile 5, I couldn’t see him anymore.  I slowed down and looked all around, but I never did spot him.  So, I was on my own for the rest of the race.  I got it in my mind that I wanted to do it in under 2 hours. I didn’t care if that meant 1:59:59! I think I could’ve done it, or at least come really close if it wasn’t for my foot….

The people on the course really make the race.  One of my favorites is this man.  He has been on the course the last three years.  He’s right by the 10K mark, so I started looking for him around then and he was there!  He is always dressed in some kind of crazy suit and always has his table, chairs, drinks and cigar.  He just makes me laugh! This year I had to stop and take his picture. 

After him, we hit Gorilla Hill, and it’s tough!  I slowed down and walked a little at the bottom.  I had actually intended on walking the whole hill because I didn’t want to run out of energy after it.  But, because of the amount of people, I felt like I was being pushed up it, so I ran again. 

I hate the hill, but I love all the people!  There are tons of people dressed as bananas, and they are handing out bananas all the way up.  There was also this pink gorilla.

The first half of the race was a breeze, and I actually ran faster than I did during training.  I felt great!  But, around mile 9, my foot started hurting.  We were running down a small hill and I guess I landed on it wrong.  A sharp pain went up through my foot and after that I struggled.  You can see on my splits when it happened.  I had to slow down for the rest of the race.  What makes me mad though is that everything else was fine.  My body never felt tired, I didn’t feel like I was running out of steam, and I still felt great….except my foot. 

That second half was tougher because we were running into the wind and it was ridiculous! I got cold again and froze the whole second half!  It also felt like it was a gradual uphill climb the whole rest of the race.

The last mile was the best!  All the runners around me were cheering each other on and the excitement kind of went through the whole group.  We all finished strong!  As soon as I could see the finish line, I sprinted!  I was ready to be done and warm up! 

My official time was 2:07:51.  It’s not what I had hoped for, but I’m still really happy with it! It’s two minutes faster than my last time on this course.   

My dad finished with a new PR!! 

We color coordinated!

Even with the cold and windy weather, the race was a blast!  The city really does go all out and support the runners!  There are so many people out along the course and it makes it so entertaining to see all the signs, costumes, bands, and hear all the cheering.  Even the volunteers who are blocking traffic are using their bull horns to cheer us on. 

I get so caught up in looking at everyone and reading all the signs that it makes the race go by so fast!  Each neighborhood lines the streets with funny and motivational signs.  There are also tons of people out with signs.  Some of the funny ones that I saw were:  “If this race was easy, it would be called yo momma.”  “Run faster or I’ll drop the sign”.  The guy holding it looked like he didn’t have on any clothes behind it.  He had to have been freezing!  There was also a person dressed in a poop emoji costume holding a sign that said “bathrooms straight ahead.” 

In the neighborhoods, there are groups tailgating and cheering us on.  A lot of them had their own water stations set up – but with beer and shots.  I think this year there were more “booze” stops than water stops.  It was pretty funny! 

After crossing the finish line, I grabbed a bottle of water and got my medal and finisher’s shirt.  Then I went out to find Jeremy and my family.  Jeremy was about half frozen when I found him.  He sat out in the cold the entire time I ran.  Talk about an awesome husband!! 

My mom and my “niece” were there too.  (She’s not really my niece, but kind of.)  We were all so cold that I didn’t take very many pictures at the finish line.  I was so ready to warm up! 

We headed back to Norman and I sat in a hot bath for probably 30 minutes!  I finally thawed out!  After that we stopped at Waffle House on the way home to eat.  Nothing sounded good, but I knew I needed to eat.  I ordered a waffle, eggs, toast, and hash browns.  I couldn’t eat much of any of it, but at least I got some food in me.  I don’t know why I’m not ever hungry after I run.  

When we got home, we went straight to bed and took about a 2 hour nap.  The rest of the day was spent with my feet propped up with ice on them. 

FYI about my feet:  I have decided that the pain has something to do with my shoes..obviously.  I have never had any kind of pain in my feet until I started wearing these new shoes.  I have tried to unlace and re-lace them but it didn’t help.  After the race, both of my feet hurt!  Especially my right one.  I couldn’t hardly put any pressure on it Sunday or Monday.  It’s feeling a little better today though.  

I am very disappointed because I’ve been wearing these shoes for four years now.  But, something had to have changed in the new edition of them.  (They are the Brooks Ravenna 8 – is anyone else wearing these and having any trouble?)  I guess I’m going to be getting new shoes.  And, I’m going to stay off my feet and out of those shoes for a couple of days and see how they feel.   If they are still hurting, I will definitely be seeing a doctor. 

For this weekly update I’m linking up with Holly of HoHo Runs and Tricia of MissSippiPiddlin for their Weekly Wrap. 


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7 thoughts on “OKC Memorial Half Marathon Recap

  1. Heather @ Polyglot Jot

    Congratulations! Looks like a fun race! Also, those steak and shake fries look amazing–what seasoning is that?!

    1. Profile photo of Tara


      Thank you!! It was a blast!! I got the garlic Parmesan seasoning. It was nothing like it looked in the picture, but it was good!

  2. Mackenzie

    I have been so excited for this post! I LOOOOOOVE Expos. The one at Big Sur was surprisingly super tiny. But yours sounds like it was a blast! That croissant looks sooo tasty! I have been so hungry this week, it’s unreal!! Do you find that after your race too?! Oh my lanta- it was SO cold at your start! You are a trooper. And sheesh- that is a ton of runners! It must be a wonderful race with that many people wanting to run it! Girl you did SO well! MAJOR congrats! AAhhhhh all your training paid off so well <3 I hope your foot feels better soon. Loved all the pictures! Keep us all updated! Have a great weekend, dear!

  3. Lesley

    I’m not hungry for about 30 to 60 minutes after a race, but after that I can eat anything. And since I just had a race, I do eat anything I want. No need to be super healthy right afterwards.

    1. Profile photo of Tara


      lol that’s so true! When I am hungry afterward the first thing I want is a burger and fries!

  4. San

    Great job, girl! You ran a solid race!!!

    1. Profile photo of Tara


      Thank you!! It was fun!

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