All aboard it’s time to head off for the I-35 Challenge. The challenge requires you to complete a run on Saturday at the Waddell & Reed Kansas City Marathon with Ivy Investments and Sunday at the IMT Des Moines Marathon. Back to back halfs…only an idiot would do that! Just FYI there were about 600 idiots that decided to do it. The first thing you must know is that any distance can be conquered with the I-35 Challenge it doesn’t have to be just the half you can also do the challenge with fulls. I’m dumb but not that dumb! The second thing you need to know is that you must sign up for the Challenge early. They close it at a designated number of participants not in any relation to the fullness of each individual race. We were put on a waiting list because we didn’t sign up early enough. So sad.
The directions from Oklahoma were pretty simple. You just head straight up I-35. I’m pretty sure that’s why it’s the I-35 Challenge. See, I’m getting smarter as the day goes on. I will say that there is pretty much nothing to look at between Moore, Oklahoma and Kansas City, Missouri except Windmills at Wind Farms and flat land. To entertain ourselves on the drive we ate gummy bears and pretended that every person we drove past was naked. The flat drive totally didn’t prepare us for all the hills that lie ahead.
We had great race weather that morning. That’s probably because we were still training in 90 degree weather leading up to the race. The race directors kept sending out heat advisories because of the weather they were use to having this time of year. The surprise for us wasn’t the heat. It was the hills!!!
The first 10 miles of the KC Marathon are all hills. Not soft rolling countryside. We’re talking hills! Hills that cause your toes to strike the end of your shoe box when running down hill. Hills that cause you to laugh a bit when turning the corner because you just can’t believe there is another one.
This race was well supported with people and fun cleaver signs all along the route and the course ran through pretty scenic areas downtown. Areas that you can see yourself living in and walking your little dog to get coffee in the morning. That made the run enjoyable even on the up hills!
The last mile was tiring but we made it to the finish. I judge races not only on community support but also on finish line food and at this one you got to choose between a hamburger, a chicken sandwich or a chicken wrap. I chose the wrap and it didn’t disappoint! If I lived in Kansas City, Missouri I’m sure I would do this race every year. It was a ton of hilly fun. Plus I got to see a real life working telephone booth. How many of those do you see! I took a picture to show my kids.
At the end of this race we did have that moment of panic that we couldn’t believe we signed up to do another one the very next day. I really should think these things thru better! I’m an Aries and that means that I’m good at planning and poor on follow through. That pretty much sums up my life. I should have been a travel agent.
PS…We decided after this trip that we would only book with chain hotels. The hotel we booked was sketchy. When we asked if we could get a late checkout the guy at the front desk asked if it was because we had plans to stay out all night. That should also answer questions about it’s location.
Either way, it’s official I can mark Missouri off my list. #halfinfifty Look out Des Moines. We’re headed up I-35.