Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Ragnar Wasatch Back 2013!

I was not planning on doing Ragnar this year.

It's kind of where I started with running... and I have some really fond memories of it.

But it's expensive, it takes a lot of time, and most of the time I ended up doing a lot of planning/captaining stuff for it!

Last year we had a great time with TWELVE family members all running together and sharing a great, but long experience. It took us over 37 hours to complete the relay.

After the race, when we started discussions of a family team for this year, I didn't feel like I wanted to deal with that, and nobody else did either, so we didn't buy a team.

Fast forward to a while back when a coworker decided to drop out of our Corporate team, and WHAM I was in a team that finished in 29 hours last year, taking 102nd out of almost 1200 teams!

A bit different than the support-your-runner-and-don't-worry-about-pace approach I've been part of before!

This team is STRONG and FAST!

Also in previous Ragnars I have always been in van 2. This year I was assigned leg 6, the last leg of Van 1. First time to the start line!!

Fun to see the actual start and cheer on our runner. Go RevRun!

My first leg went up a little, and then DOWN Avon Pass. Very enjoyable leg, mostly because it was a fairly fast downhill on a DIRT road! I really don't like pavement much!!

Yeah... That was a fun leg. Although I realized with a mile left to go that I had forgotten to wear my race bib/number!! So my final mile was a little slower as I was trying to text and call my team so that we wouldn't get in trouble... luckily nobody cared, so I should have just RUN and had a better total. As it was, 6.9 miles in 52:45, is a time I'm happy with.

Our van blazed through those first legs, cutting 30 minutes out of our estimated time, so Van 2 started ahead of schedule! Luckily they were ready to go!

We hopped in the van and headed along the route to a Subway where most everybody (not me) got a sandwich. I ate HAM and Veggies! YUM!

We then drove up to Snow Basin for Bathroom Breaks and wait for Van2 to complete their first legs. They killed it and added a couple minutes to our lead.

I also was able to do my Mayurasana with the wife of a coworker who HATES when I do Mayurasana. Made my day. :)

We left our first runner and headed down the road to the next exchange because the line of cars heading out down Trapper's Loop was ridiculous. It was a good idea, but we probably could have waited a LITTLE longer. Lots of runners made it to the bottom before their vans and had to wait! This was probably the worst point of congestion I noticed the whole race.

As we waited, the 'nighttime rules' started, so we added reflective gear while we waited.

As it got darker and our team was still totally kicking butt on their legs, it finally REALLY turned to night and it was my turn to run the long 8.2 miles up through Morgan to East Canyon Reservoir.


8.2 miles in 1:13:34 - I could probably improve on that - but I'm very happy with it. I KNOW that my crazy Tuesday Morning runs of Vertical Ridiculousness made a huge difference. I passed over 75 people on this leg, and was only passed by 2 guys who I dragged along for the first 3 miles of the race before they caught me. Then we stuck together for just over a mile with some nice pacing and conversation! :)

About the time I couldn't keep up with those guys anymore my breathing was having some allergy issues. Grr. I don't know if I can put the blame on that or what... but like I said I'm still happy!

We then drove to Oakley to rest at the next exchange - I kept our driver awake with my crazy ramblings, and ended up not being able to move off the middle bench of our van, where I got almost 2.5 hours of sleep.

Our final legs began at almost 5:00 AM. The moon (above picture) looked very cool 30 minutes before that! Hard to capture with all the runner lights and excitement of the exchange. Amazing that so many people were sleeping.

Our van killed it on their final legs until our last leg, mine, where I felt I did great finishing my 2.1 miles in just over 15 minutes.

Then I had Bacon with Butter. Extra Bacon due to the no pancakes. The butter was a bit much, but SO good!

Bacon and Butter for Breakfast! Yum!

Then we waited at the finish line for our van one to finish.

They were fast and we ran across the finish line just before 11:15 - so our official time was 26 hours and 57 minutes!

Victory Pizza!

Our just-sub-27 hour Results put us at 1st place in our division, 11th in the overall Mixed category, and 35th out of ALL the teams that ran! ( almost 1400!)

Another Ragnar is in the books! It's an interesting thing to think about for me. A lot of the people I run with now absolutely despise Ragnar. I understand where they are coming from, but it's very different from what we do and really targets a different demographic.

I'm thankful that I was able to see my brother run Ragnars and some Marathon's way back in 2006 finally getting on a team for 2010 and training for it - and then just continuing in fitness from there. That first Ragnar was a big turning point in my life because look how important fitness is now! So whether or not I'll do a Ragnar again (and if I'm still here we may try to improve on this years time!!) I am thankful for what it did for me.

It opened my eyes!

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