Our fearless leader, Anna, who organized and harassed all of us for the last 6 months to put this thing together. We couldn't have done it without her.
Actually we prolly WOULDN'T have done it without her. Which many people were saying as they cursed her name while running mile 5 uphill.....but I digress.
We had a 9pm meeting the night before where we exchanged cell phone #'s and talked about our plan. And when I say plan I mean, finalizing food and water and vans. The "plan" in regard to actually running looked a little like this:
"Finish and stay alive"
I think that plan can apply to many things. Don't you?
So, the Ragnar is a fairly young yet wildly popular relay race. It's run all over the country, involves (most of the time) a 12 person team, 3 volunteers, 2 vans, 2 drivers, 200(ish) miles, and 36(ish) hours. Each team member runs three different legs over that 36 hours period, with varying degrees of length and difficulty.
Doesn't that sound like FUN you gize?!!
Speaking of vans. There were two vans. In Van 1:
Dwight, Jespy, Me (notice the box of tissues, more on that later), Shed, Uncle D, and Ally.
We had the first 6 legs, ranging from 5.7-8.8 miles each, totally 44 miles. The race started with me,....at 6:30 am......up in the Valley of Fire.......still dark.....headlamps required.....reflective vests required......LED lights required.
Of course, by the time I got to the "chute" to hand off that sweaty wrist band to Ally, it was light outside. I had stuck the headlamp down my sports bra. I'm just now confessing this to the other members of my group that later used that head lamp.
I'll send you sympathy cards in the mail tomorrow.
Speaking of pictures of me running......you have to have ZERO shame to post these. I actually have shame but I'm pretending to be very confident.
Is it working?
Let's speed things up here a bit and show you how that first 5 hours of Friday went.
Ally (who was by far the fastest runner in our van)
I knew her for approximately 2.5 hours before this race. Now she's one of my new BFF's.
I heart you Ally!!
The scenery was gorge btw!! You wouldn't think so in the desert.
The vans would drive along the course and "leap frog" with the runners, stopping to give them water, ring the cowbell, cheer them on, what have you.
Sometimes (before we ran) we'd even be essited!
And at each exchange of runners we got to use these loverly porta potties.
As you can imagine they, um, got progressively worse as the 36 hours crept forward.
In the van we had changes of running clothes, food, pillows, sleeping bags (for that 2.5 hour "sleep" on the ground we got to take), water, electrolyte and energy food (gross!) and obviously our various cell phones/ipods/chargers, etc.
We had LOTS of fun in the van. That was one of my favorite parts.
Token pic of Shed running.
If you click on that pic you'll see he's actually...........smiling!
As he goes up here:
for approximately 7 miles. Up. Hill.
Maybe he was smiling because he knew he got to do this:
And he got to do it often since most of us were too tired to get out of the van more than once during any particular leg of the race.
Rools. Lots of rools from those Ragnar people.
Can't cross the street without a flag.
Have to wear the nighttime gear.
Have to actually move your bodies over the whole 200 miles instead of driving it.
Token pic of Jespy running.
She insisted I keep that pic far away. But if you click on it you can vaguely see that our beloved Jespy actually had robot knees.
You learn something new here every day.
Speaking of runners and volunteers,...look what dood got to volunteer right as his bro was finishing off Van 1! Uncle D ran in to all of us cheering for him and his brother, the other Uncle D, pointing him in the direction to go. Tender moment.
After running the first leg for our van we got to meet Van 2. This van consisted of Anthony, Anna B, Anna D, David, Trent, and Kerra. You can see a few more pics of that group HERE.
Not that I'm complaining or anything (even tho I totally am), this Van 2 got to sleep in that morning and only run 25 miles compared to our van getting up at 4am and running 44 miles.
As a giver of Ragnar information I feel it my duty to inform you of that. I'm sure you understand. ::rubbing sore hamstring::
So, five times over that 36 hour period we got to chat and catch up with the other Van.
And their yellow collared shirts.
Here's a few pics from the other group's fun time.
The driver, HotPants, who had to back out at the last minute due to a knee injury.
David, updating his FB status. I think he even did that during his 10 mile run.
Oh, and about that tissue box......I had a massive head cold coming on the night before the race. It reared it's ugly head between leg 1 and leg 2. Leg 2 was at 8pm at night and I had to carry tissues in my pocket so I didn't get snot on the runners behind me.
Is that too much information?
Over 36 hours I "went" #2 more than lotsa times, slept about 2.5, laughed, cried, stunk (thank goodness for deodorant spray), drank 11teen gallons of water, drank only 3 sodas (can you believe it?!), blew my nose 12, 635 times, ran (duh), greased my hair, tried to UNgrease my hair (no point), changed clothes twice, choked down some power bar bites (never again), did the running man once, cheered with a cow bell, met new people, took a few pictures, and then.....
it was time for the finish
Our van had a few hours break before Van 2 finished up so we got to go back to Jespy's house and actually SHOWER and use a flushing toilet.
We actually looked kinda normal. Good thing there's no video of us trying to walk. Picture the Tin Man right before he freezes solid. It was kinda like that.
::rubbing sore calves::
Anthony was our last runner and we got to wait a few yards from the finish and run in with him.
Here is our whole crew right after the finish.
I loved every minute of it. I'm still sad that it's over.
::rubbing sore quads::
But srsly, it was an experience I'll never forget. I can't wait to do it again. Who's with me?
Besides you get these cool shirts and medals
I've only worn mine to the mall and grocery store 3 times this week.