Kansas City Half Marathon- Running through the City of Fountains

When you’re in the Overland Park KS area, you’re basically right outside of Kansas City.  And when you’re in the vicinity of Kansas City, you have to specify if you’re on the KS side or the MO side.  Anyways, since I’m out here with no good idea of where to run, I decided to sign up for the Kansas City Half Marathon.  Specifically the Waddell and Reed Half Marathon.  Way to sign up for something 2 weeks before it happens, but I apparently am really good at signing up for half marathons with little to no notice these days.  Since I’ve been hanging out in Kansas, I have no idea where to run.  I was able to get into a local gym for a month that has treadmills and a short track which is good for intervals and runs of 6-7 miles (in which I lose interest in running on the treadmill).  However, I then have to time when I go so I don’t have to deal with the screaming volleyball players.  Solution: Half Marathon.  That, and I can now check off the state of Missouri (since it was on the MO side of Kansas City) of my states of half marathon.

The stronger bib that's 100% recyclable to boot. It will, however, go on my wall of bibs in Philly

Kansas City is home to Hallmark Headquarters and is also known as the City of Fountains.  Needless to say, crowns and fountains are integrated into the city, but that’s besides the point.  I went to pick up my stuff at the expo Thursday afternoon.  I was able to get free parking at the hotel it was being held at (score!) and since there was no one there, I was able to get through without waiting in any sort of line.  I got a decent bib this time around, one with more structure per se so it doesn’t get crinkled up or drip with sweat due to being made out of paper.  I also picked up my shirt, which only stated there was a marathon going on.  It would have been nice to mention us half marathoners- we work just as hard!!  Anyways, I then scoured the expo for any and every exhibit that  had anything to do with selling shoes.  I am in the process of switching from my Wave Inspire 6s to Brooks’ Ravenna 2s.  My feet of spoken and like Ravenna better (yes, through ESP, my feet can speak)- it was just a matter of finding them for not $100.  3 spots, no Ravenna 2s- insert sad face here.  I did get info on some half marathons, including one called the Oz Marathon.  At the Oz Marathon exhibit I was asked a trivia question- What color were Dorothy’s shoes in the original book? Not the movie, not Wicked; in the original book The Wizard of Oz (Answer: Silver).  Anyways, after making my rounds, I headed back to KS and prepped for a 7:05 start time on Saturday.


Come Saturday morning, I was up bright and early at 5:20 or so.  For a race that was 25 minutes away from where I’m staying, when you have no idea where you’re going, having to get up early is a price to pay to get there.  Anyways, my stuff was laid out and pinned on the night before.  Me, my long sleeves and 3/4 length spandex were off by 5:45 and in Missouri by 6:05 and parked by 6:20.  The nice thing was that I was parked 5 minutes away from the finish and close to where the high way was in order to get back to Kansas.  The porta potty lines were short too which is always a plus.  I’ve learned if you want a faster line, get into the line with more guys- they move faster.  I then went and hung out at the start (which was right around the finish line).  At one point, someone was moving past me and noticed me shaking. Yes, it was 45 degrees at the start and the sun wasn’t up.  Once I got moving, I was doing ok.  The first 3 miles or so, I was moving and keeping up with the 2:05 pace group.  Then Kansas City decided to introduce me to its hills.  This coming from someone who isn’t a fan of hills.  We’re talking hills that felt like it the were up a 30 degree incline.  The first hills hit around miles 2 and mile 3.25 into the race.  What made it worse was that you could see it coming.  We also got hit again after mile 4 at some point.  Through the first 10K, I was running under 10 minute miles (yay me!!).  Then, I started slowing down. My wall came between miles 8-9.  My legs hated me and the first half of the course’s hills.  That, and the dry heaves that decided to show up.  I was very appreciative to the guy handing out bottled water between miles 6-7.  And the DJ at mile 11 yelling it was all flat and downhill (which was true).  That and the sun was up but it wasn’t warming up all that much.  I had been hoping to finish under 2:10.  Official time: 2:13:20. I’ll take it but my mile wall I hit kinda stung later on.  Since I had to get back to my side of Kansas, I grabbed my medal, water, banana and chocolate milk and ditched the finisher photo op and got to my car.

I was back in Overland Park in 30 minutes thanks to highway construction down to one lane.  I appreciated the fact the hills were out of the way in the first half of the race.  And that there were water and gatorade stations every mile or so.  And that it’s a local race not associated with a race series.  The weather was gorgeous, although it could have been warmer, but that’s beyond my control.  The medal could have been more interesting.  I mean this is the City of Fountains for crying out loud!!  I’d come back for it.  If I’m ever in Kansas (or Missouri) again.


About drrunner
8 time marathoner, 65 ish time 1/2 marathoner with a bucket list item to hit all 50 states. BibRave Pro, Doctor and a mix of insanity

2 Responses to Kansas City Half Marathon- Running through the City of Fountains

  1. Luann says:

    Do they have any type of outlets there for Hallmark products? just wondering.

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