Thursday, March 24, 2016

Dust Bowl Half Marathon Series : Guymon, Oklahoma ...

Good morning, Guymon!!! The winds seem to have died down .. so is it a nice morning?
Oh. 28 degrees? Brrr. That's pretty cold. Wish I had thought to bring gloves. Or at least an extra pair of socks to put on my hands... Let's just say that I lost the feeling in my fingertips while I was waiting for the start.
Despite my seeking out the start the previous day, I was still a little lost and managed to drive all the way aroud the park and back in before I got parked. I'm the best. We had to park on the opposite side of the lake, then walk the half mile round to the start area. I picked up my bib, my "starter medal", and my funky shirt (pink and blue tie-dye!) and then just tried to keep warm.
It was still quite dark as we waited ... but I was really looking forward to this pretty little course:

A few minutes before the start, Clint climbed his ladder to give the course talk... today's course was 7 laps for half marathoners. I love it when the laps are longer and the reps are fewer...

The course was a giant C, running a narrow path 9/10ths of the way around the lake, reaching a turnaround, then going back. Why, hello there BLACK CONE!!!
Look how pretty this course is?
A couple of challenges ... it was c-c-c-cold... and at some point the wind picked up. I had decided to run/walk 4 of the 7 laps, then reduce my running. By lap 6, I was basically just walking -- hoping to save my legs a bit. But it was SO COLD that I got super chilled, and had to put on my Nanopuff again for the last lap!
Also ... and I know this will sound HORRIBLE... but. There was a racer who had a recumbent bike chair ... because the course was so narrow, he was just running loops clockwise around the lake -- he'd never be able to make the turnaround. All good. But the problem was, he was going really fast -- like, BIKE fast. And the course was narrow, and he was passing people without havingn room to do so. As in, passing people so that the oncoming runners had to jump off the path to avoid being hit. Not cool. But I don't know how it could have been avoided, other than maybe all of use running loops, and him going the opposite direction? Sorry if that sounds really, really mean, but ...
And at the end of the day ... rubber bands, man.
Hurried back to the hotel for a quick shower, then headed out ... to KANSAS!
Stopped in Liberal, Kansas, to visit the Land of Oz ... but discovered, at 12;03, that the land of Oz is closed for lunch from noon - 1. So I gave it a miss.
ButI did fill up on gas at a Sinclair station, and discovered this charmingly dressed dino...
Since the next town was so close by, I decided to make a wide swing to the east to pass through Dodge City, where I didn't linger... I mean, I GOT THE HELL OUT OF DODGE!
But then I went to what I really wanted to see, some off the best-preserved ruts from the Santa Fe Trail...
Okay, it took a lot of imagination, but I do think I can sorta see them? Well, maybe...
Then some fast driving on 2-lane highways to arrive in Ulysses, Kansas, my stop for the evening.
One very nice thing -- the Grand County Historic Adobe Museum hosted a reception forr us at the museum ... which was, truly, one of the nicest small museums I've ever seen. Really nicely curated displays, and an interesting collection of artifacts.
Really pretty diorama...
... and a nicely restored Pegasus neon...
Already feeling a little sad that Wil and I aren't both here and doing the entire series ... but also kinda happy to only have one more race left!!!

Virtual Running Blog Hop -- this month's topic is "first race of the year" ... this isn't my first race, but it's my first new state of the year, so I think it's still relevant.

1 comment:

Christina said...

Hi Sunny, just stopping by from the Virtual Running Blog Hop. I like your post! Gorgeous pics and also really nice to explore running outside of the UK. It sounds like an amazing challenge you're undertaking, what an experience. Good luck and look forward to reading more about it!
Christina.
http://www.runstretchslob.blogspot.co.uk