|My effort to show both sides of the two sided medal|
Distance: 105 mile relay
Date: June 16-17, 2012, staggered team start. Our Start was 3:00pm
Finish time: 19:21:44, 11:04 min/avg (official time/pace)*
What sets this race apart: A point-to-point 105 mile course through the park trails in Columbus Ohio. Overnight relay.
*I filled out our team time sheet, and I remember this number being above 20 hours. I'm wondering if the double legs weren't doubled in the official time. Based on what each member actually averaged per mile, we should have been slower than this official pace. But, I'll take it! (The other option - I can't add. LOL!)
|Lucky 13's - After the Finish Line|
|But we did LIVE this particular artwork.|
|Awesome RAC sign at the starting check-in. Listed every team and it's members.|
Despite these fears, I have to give credit where credit is due. For the most part, this race ran EXTREMELY smoothly, especially for a first time event. The exchange zones were well marked. Despite the warnings about the course, the course itself was well marked, although there were a couple confusing spots. (Some last minute team-specific changes did cause us some logistical issues because we'd arranged to have companion runners for the dark legs, but I'll talk about that later.) The volunteers were friendly, and the extra policemen and rangers were awesome too. Great job RAC!
|The loot. Each team member got a shirt, Balega socks, a magnet, a hat and a medal. |
Each team got two amphipod belts we were required to wear, rotating them.
I got to keep one of ours.
|Adding the necessary decor to the van|
|The team - before we got all sweaty and sleep deprived.|
From left to right, Kristi, Laurie, Michele, Me, Keri and Amy
I was Runner 1. This meant that I ran Legs 1, 7 and 13. Our team was scheduled to start at 3pm on Saturday. It was 90*F at the start.
|So surreal to start a race with only 2 other people. Teams were staggered based on predicted pace.|
I started too fast for a 105 mile event in the heat, and almost paid a big price. This entire leg was full sun, no shade. There was no water or hydration on the course because it was all paved trails. (This means, the van dropped off runners and drove to the next exchange point). I ran my first mile at around a 10 min/mile. (as a comparison, I was scheduled to do 11:30 min/avg). The second mile was around a 11 min/mile. By mile 2.5 I was out of fluid. Even though, I drank a 20oz Gatorade immediately before my leg, I also carried 10oz of Gatorade and 10 oz of water in my fuel belt. Nonetheless, I was completely out. To make it even better, I was showing classic signs of heat exhaustion. I was nauseous. I had chills. To be safe, I stopped and walked as needed.
I called my teammates to tell them - drink more, carry more, and that I was walking. A couple of bikers passed me after mile 3, when I was walking again. They asked if I was okay - and I answered that I was okay, just hot and out of water. They kept going, and then turned around. When they did, I just knew they were awesome. I was right, one of them offered to fill one of my water bottles with her own water, while apologizing because it wasn't really cold anymore. I wish I'd thought to get her name. I will never forget her! Over the rest of the
I passed the baton to Keri and she was off for Leg 2. Kristi ran leg 3, and Laurie race-walked leg 4.
|The 3rd exchange zone.|
|We even had fans at Exchange zone 3!|
Back to the relay in progress...
|Amy looking for Laurie at Exchange Zone 4|
|Laurie and Sarah just before Leg 6.|
|Because every van should have a bra hanging on the side mirror....to go with the storage bag that looks like a body bag.|
Leg 7 started at almost 10pm. I had finally been able to pee just before this leg (for the first time since my hot first leg - shows how dehydrated I still was!). It was dark by this point and fairly hilly. I typically don't mind hills, but when you can't see them until the ground slants beneath your feet, they are more challenging! The lightening bugs were making a fantastic light show in the trees though! Nonetheless, if it weren't for the AMAZING Sarah, I would have been a crazy mess. Running a trail through the trees when it's VERY dark can only be described as creepy! I have never been more thankful to be bike accompanied in my life! Headlamps just don't put off enough light to kill the creepy factor on their own!
|We thought a pose showing our sleepiness was appropriate before leg 12. Time: 2:47am|
I started leg 13 at 3:45am. I had still not slept even for a minute. Stephanie was there to keep me awake and running - thank goodness! (I was too sleep deprived to remember to take a picture of us though!) This leg started downtown, proceeded down to the Olentangy trail, down to the Ohio State Campus, and then down through a few more parks. It seemed like a very long 8 miles! We got confused at one point and stopped to pull out the map and directions. We also walked when I needed to GU. Other than that, we plowed along. We did see the biggest beaver ever near the river. He couldn't care less that we went running by him at 4:30am! A volunteer topped off my water around mile 6 - I told them I loved them! I could actually wring water out of my shirt when I was finished.
After that leg, I was done! WOOHOO! The remaining exchanges proceeded like clockwork.
|The last leg was at a decent hour, so Amy had company - Sue, Jennifer and LeDawn!|
The race had each team run in with the anchor runner for the last 50 yards or so. It was pretty cool to finish the race as a team. Amy's kids and her husband also ran with us. Her husband was our driver for the first half of the night.
|We're almost DONE!|
I will do an additional post about what I learned and what I would do differently. For today though, let's just close with the surreal idea that we finished a 105 mile overnight relay with no injuries! We all still even like each other! Awesome. Just awesome.
Way to go Lucky 13's!!!