Before I get into all of last weekend’s race details, I feel that I should start with a little background on our team.
Here is the basic idea of the relay. You get a team of 12 runners and two drivers and you take turns running the 187 miles from Wickenburg Arizona to Scottsdale. Each person ends up with three ‘legs’ that total anywhere from 12 to 20 miles. Van 1 starts with it’s 6 runners and when the last runner finishes their leg, van 2 meets and their first runner starts. Van 1 has the next 4-6 hours to eat, sleep(?) and shower. This continues for 20 to 30 hours when you hopefully don’t die and get to the finish line. It sounds fairly easy when you just think of the mileage, but I had no idea what I was getting into….
I have a good running friend who thought that we really needed to experience something like this. ‘A’ was able to round up twelve of our fellow friends (some runners, some newbies) into joining her in this adventure. Amazingly, everyone lives in the same neighborhood and I thought it was really cool to have so many runners living so close, especially when you need a training partner for those dark early-morning runs!
Originally, all of the women who were on our team were moms, but one mom had to drop out. She had her little sister fill in for her and she was the only single, childless one in the bunch, not to mention about 10 years younger than the rest of us. I was a little worried that she would hate spending so much time with us ‘old ladies’, but she had a great time and is already talking about doing it again next year. I guess we weren’t too boring.
Alys (our organizer) is super-crafty, super-creative and super-girlie. Seriously girlie. At our first meeting we read through the “Ragnar Race Bible” and talked a bit about training schedules. Then it was on to more pressing issues like what are we going to wear and how are we going to decorate our van? You know, the important stuff! To A’s credit, she is a great runner and has even cut a few minutes of her mile in the last few months, which is incredible. She just likes the fluff and there is nothing wrong with that. Our colors were picked; pink and black (no surprise there) and we all voted on a name. I guess we were ready to roll!
We sewed banners, we made flags, we glued feathers onto flip-flops and we even trained a little. Actually we worked really hard, but it sure did seem like we did more prep for our ‘theme’. Now, looking back, I’m glad that we put some effort into that. We may have stood out a little lot, but it did add that fun element that was missing from the more competitive teams, and competitive was one thing that we were not! At all. But we didn’t finish last! Phew!
Why yes, that is a disco ball in our van! Isn’t it great? This was actually quite the attention-getter at the race. People would ask “you’re the team with the disco ball, right?” Yeah, that’s us. We added hot pink streamers coming out from the disco ball too, but after being around all things pink last weekend I opted for the black and white look in this picture. Maybe I’ll throw some color into the next post!
I’m usually not really concerned with all things ‘girly’, but I actually got into the decorating spirit as we neared the starting day. I even came up with the idea of personalizing our visors with our initials. The girls were all for it when I mentioned using ‘bling’. These I thought turned out really well, and they were also very functional which makes me happy. (oh, the mom in me *sigh*)
More Ragnar to come….