Ok, so now that you have met the team (and know how amazing they all are) we can get down to business!!
Again, where to even begin!! To be honest I had no idea what I was getting myself into. Nor how much fun I would have!! This whole experience is one I will never forget.
Any time we told anyone we were doing the Ragnar Relay Wasatch Back as a ultra, they would look at us like we were crazy and the comment “What?!!! You’re Crazy!!” would follow. Believe me we heard it a lot throughout our 30 hour experience. This was doing nothing to calm my nerves.
Were we crazy?! I mean I have never done a Ragnar before, and I chose an ultra for one of my first, with a group of girls I have never met and on one of the hardest courses!! There were only 4 other ultra women teams….”Shut the Front Door” (courtesy of Holly). That tells you something.
Again, seems normal right?! Nothing about my experience was really normal, so it’s like icing on the cake. And if anyone could do it, I had no doubt our team could tackle this feat…..”Get it Girl” (courtesy of Holly).
We arrived in style and had to be the loudest and vibrant team at the start. We made time to dance, jump and pose. No big deal!!
Lisa started the race for the team and she looked amazing doing it!!
We were off and there was no turning back. At 1:52 p.m. I was up as runner 5.
My first leg was one of my hardest. It was 7.4 miles completely uphill with an elevation gain of 1,214 feet. EEK!! It was named “What the Hill?” or mountain. Believe me it was quiet the climb.
It was on a gravel road, with the vans kicking up dust. Our driver NuunNed as we called him, said I was kicking up the dust (he was trash talking).
My van was great cheering me on and keeping me hydrated with water and Nuun.
I was surprised it felt easy, considering the high elevation and the hot sun. I felt great though. 7.4 miles, 1:01:27, 8:18 pace and 12 road kills (you learn to appreciate all your roadkills, it makes running go by much faster).
I tried keeping my muscles loose in between runs, and did a good job of it early on, but by the end of the race my stretching efforts slowly died.
My second run was another 7.3 mile climb, with an even greater elevation gain of 1,830 feet titled “We Hope You Know What You’re Getting Yourself Into.” I didn’t know what I was getting myself into the day I said yes to the race, so how bad could it be?!
Let’s just say my legs were tired from the first climb and I was hot. I started at 5:54 p.m. and had no van support. Thankfully there were gorgeous views along the way.
The further up I went, the less road there was.
Apparently there was a reason van’s couldn’t follow us, the road was washed away in places. That made for an interesting run.
It was slim picking for roadkills on this leg, with only 7. When I reached exchange 11 in 1:09:51 an average pace of 9:27 (drastically slower than the first uphill climb), I was elated and happy to never do that again!!
The lodge was gorgeous at the top and I finally took some time to eat some real food.
Our real food consisted of PB & J, rice cakes with PB, and cup of noodles or the healthier version of that. So not much substance. Peanut MM’s and rice cakes got me through the race…not ideal for an ultra relay or recommended.
It was time to prepare for our night legs and we did so in style.
(this is Vieve and I)
My third run for the day started at 10:17 p.m. and was an moderate 4.21 miles with a measly 171 feet of elevation gain (I say measly in comparison to my first two legs, but it felt much harder on tired legs).
I actually enjoyed my night time legs and had 17 more roadkills. I tried running in glow in the dark sunglasses, but that only worked the first mile. After that I thought it would be easier(and safer) to ditch them.
Finished this leg in 29:12, average pace of 6:56 for 4.21 miles.
I tried to sleep after this leg but sleeping in van that stops and goes with 5 other tired runners isn’t the easiest and just wasn’t going to happen. I did get a little rest in time to start my early morning run.
At this point you are running off of….peanut MM’s maybe…?? And the great support from my team!! Have I mentioned they were awesome? I was still fading and I was fading fast, but still enjoying every minute of it!!
Part 3 of team #highnuun’s adventure is coming to a computer near you soon!!
Lisa (Mom to Marathon) says
I love reading about your runs!
SO fun reading about your relay, since I just ran mine a few weeks ago! I am definitely addicted!!
Way to go on your legs! I can’t imagine taking those inclines back to back! Great job!
They are so addicting!! I loved meeting this women. Such a life changer for me. Which one did you do??
Your 1st two legs. I only dream of being able to run like that. AMAZING!
“You are a legend.”
(PS – I love that photo of us with the reflective vests. It’s just super fun!)
Aw!! Thanks Vieve!! I had a great cheer squad and was surrounded by inspiring runners!! That photo is great!!