This year we decided to go ULTRA and did a mixed team (three guys and three girls). Josh and I ran along with four friends, and it was SO MUCH FUN.
My PT said he thought I would be fine running Ragnar as long as I didn't push hard on any big uphills. I was just really, really needing a break. I was so excited for a weekend with Josh, friends, and running, and put no pressure on myself for any time goals. My only goal was to have fun and feel good.
My first run was two legs of the relay that combined for 11.1 miles. It was HOT (around 1:15pm when I started) and temps were in the 80's, but I ran well. It was a challenge but it was fun. My second set of legs came just after midnight and this run was awesome. It was 9.1 miles total and it was nice and cool and dark. There were some rolling hills and a net uphill but nothing that felt significant/severe. It was super fun!
My last run was on Saturday afternoon and it was mean. The temps were about 90 degrees and the first half of the 14 mile run was steep uphill. At this point it was Saturday afternoon and I had only slept 3 hours since Friday night (and I had run over 20 miles since then). Fatigue was an issue. The heat was an issue. The hills sucked. My hip/glute had felt awesome for the first two runs (in fact I hadn't felt it at all until this point) but on the steep uphills it started to tighten up on me. I had no desire to risk injury or push things, so I walked on the steepest uphills. I am pretty sure I was able to walk faster than I was able to run anyway! And the blacktop on the highway was so hot. I felt like I was cooking from above and below.
The second half of the 14 miles was mostly downhill, although I was about as exhausted as I have ever been. I ran tough and finished strong though and was really, really happy to be DONE. :)
Josh did awesome and our whole team just pushed and ran so hard. It was crazy to get done and look at the six of us and realize we had just run almost 200 miles! And despite living in a 15 passenger van together for two days and having almost no sleep at all, we had a blast and everyone was so much fun. We got home at 2am this morning, tired but super happy. It was an incredible experience and I am so grateful to have gotten to do this. (HUGE huge huge thanks to my brother Mark, who came out from NY for the week and timed it so he could stay with the kids so Josh and I could do this together.)
We did fail pretty miserably at taking pictures, but here are a couple.
Here is our van, decorated and ready to go on Thursday night.
Here is team S.P.U.R. right before we started on Friday morning.
|Alana, Josh, me, Dave, Lauri, and Justin|
|Josh being cute|
|This is me starting off on my first run (and that is my teammate, Lauri, behind me who just got done with her first legs).|
|Dave ran his final leg in hot pink shorts. Crazy awesome. :)|
Two of our sons got to run on a team of 12 with extended family and they loved every minute of it, and we saw lots of friends out on the course which just made the experience that much more fun. (And HI to blog readers who recognized me and said hi. It was nice to meet you!) The kids here all did great with my brother and the weekend was amazing all the way around. If you have never done a Ragnar, I highly recommend it. It is definitely my running guilty pleasure.
Happy Father's Day everybody!!