Thursday, July 1, 2010

Wasatch Back Ragnar Relay

Two weekends ago I participated in the Ragnar Relay's Utah race, The Wasatch Back with my awesome team.
"We Arrrrr Pirates Out Chasin' Booty!"

The course runs 188.2 miles from Logan, Utah down through the mountains and lakes of Northern Utah ending in Park City. Teams of 12 runners switch off running 3 legs each for an average of about 15 miles per runner.

(Read on after the break)

My first leg was a 3.7 mile run up a fairly mean hill, ending with a FUN little run downhill into a valley where I passed off the run to my younger brother to finish up to Snowbasin.

Yarr I'm quite piratey! And pasty! But burnedy!

And I start my run! Look at those calves!

My second leg was in the middle of the night - 5.5 miles along Blackport Lake. I couldn't see it but I could hear the gentle waves lapping against the shore. Both calming and creepy!
Because I was carrying a flashlight instead of wearing a headlamp, I could look up and enjoy the beautiful stars and night sky for a moment before needing to focus on the road again.
It was quite exhilarating, even with a bit of a knee problem, so I overdid it a bit! I think this caused problems for my last leg.

Before my last leg!
The handoff! Not very good relay form there... Oh well!

My final leg was supposed to be a 5.4 mile run with a small uphill at the start and an over 2000 foot descent (8909' peak to 6887' finish) but because of snow on the road we were supposed to be on they re-routed us and increased the leg by a mile and a half! Because of my run early that night/morning, my knee was NOT happy with me. I started running and within 100 yards my knee was in agony.

Pain! Agony! Why am I smiling??

I walked more than I wanted to on the first little bit I was in so much pain. I definitely need to work on my knee issues. Full sleeve braces make it worse, Jumpers Bands help but only for a time. I need to find and fix the root of the problem so that's what I hope to do this summer.
It's All Downhill from Here!
Now I was starting to feel better.

After running a couple miles down the roads, they diverted us off the main roads onto a very small trail. I wish I had some pictures somehow, but the vans all went ahead to the end of this leg since they couldn't support the runners on the trail. I didn't really need support but pictures would have been fun! This trail was probably the most enjoyable part of the run. Trees for shade, a nice interesting trail that wasn't too hard and wasn't too soft it was awesome!

A mile before the end of each leg they have a "One Mile to Go" sign, and I was seriously wondering where that sign was because I had already run over five miles! Oh right, I forgot to mention that although they had increased the distance for this leg, NOBODY KNEW about it until about 5 minutes before I got to the exchange, they sent out a text notifying. That would have been good information to know before! Still I did enjoy this exchange although it was quite difficult to walk for a little while after!

My brother was the final runner - he took off and we hopped in the van to head to the finish line, only to get stuck in traffic for over an hour and a half! That's about how long my brother waited at the finish line with the other half of our team so we could finish the relay as a team.

 I have an awesome family - my oldest was at his first Cub Scout Camp so he missed this

It was a lot of fun and because we liked it so much, we are going to go do the Vegas Ragnar Relay in October and get a special "Saints and Sinners" Medal for doing both Utah and Vegas in the same year.

Oh, and I got a MAJOR sunburn as you can tell by some of these pictures, but because of the magic of Sharpie Tattoos (see the first shirtless picture of me) I got THIS awesome sunburn:

Almost makes the burn worth it!

This was a lot of fun and will be a great memory for years to come! Especially since I already get to look forward to doing it again in Vegas in October! Yarrr!!!

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