stopped to get our wrist bands to get entry to the Marathon Maniacs tent after the race.
This race included a 0.3 mile detour at about mile 17 to the "Center of the Universe" and we stopped by this spot after we finished at the expo to take pictures and to try out the echo chamber. This was a large circular area where if you stood exactly in the middle you could hear an echo, but someone standing 1/2 a foot away from you could not hear the echo (also does not work if you can only hear out of one ear). This is a very similar echo thing that is in Portland, Oregon at Council Crest Park. Back to the hotel for a quick nap before the pasta dinner at Cain's Ballroom, a historic Tulsa landmark.
Up early the next morning to a 30 degree drop in temperature from the day before (almost 70 degrees when we went to the expo) and low clouds. Got to the start line in plenty of time before the Maniac picture. The start was in waves, I was in corral B, but did not know how much time had elapsed between waves as I had forgot my Garmin watch.
The race started and I noticed that I was feeling pretty good and decided to push the pace as much as I could by feel. Chatted with some people along the way but it was either too cold, windy or people running at the 4 hour marathon pace are less talkative, but it was generally a quiet crowd. Probably another reason why I held a brisk for me pace. Aid stations were well organized, people announcing what drink type was first, and they even had people with signs marking speed bumps when we ran through campus.
On the out/back section along the river (photo by the famous Dave Mari)
Center of the Universe is in Tulsa, OK. Between mile 17 and 18 of the marathon.
I briefly pondered skipping the detour to the center of the universe but decided to go for it, thinking when would I be back to Tulsa? They gave you a commemorative detour coin and had an aid station with Michelob Ultra, but I declined the beverage after going for it but being told what it was. More hills in the second half than the first half but it is always motivating to know that you are close to the finish. Passed by Eric and Rich, two people I carpooled with in the last mile of the race and they cheered me in. Once finishing, a volunteer placed a "first marathon" finisher's medal around my neck, but I did notice until I was in the line to get my finish time and a lady asked me how I got a gold medal. I was able to swap this in the Marathon Maniac tent. This tent was awesome though! It has tables and chairs, catered and potluck food, along with the presidents of the club hanging out and talking with everyone. But, we cooled down fast and made our way to the car to sit with the heat on and wait for the last person in our carpool.
Once on the road we stopped at truck stop for showers, but they were taking too long to clean the showers (as in they weren't cleaning the 2 open stalls during the 20 minutes we were waiting, then once we mentioned something, magically they started calling people for showers). So we all got refunds and hit the road again. Stopping at a Microtel to talk our way into renting the room for $40, the same price for all 4 of us to take a shower at the truck stop, and we were successful. An hour later we were on our way. Home by 5am Monday morning, but exhausted and sore.
Checked the results the next day and saw I broke 4 hours when you delete the detour. 3:59:11 with a 9:13 minute/mile average pace.
Next up: Tecumseh Trail Marathon near Bloomington, IN and State #21 (if completed).