Wednesday, June 4, 2014

well, that was stupid

Mid-February-ish, Jenna sent me a text telling me we should sign up for an 80-mile relay run on the Katy Trail scheduled for late August.  I was totally in.  August was like 6 months away and that was plenty of time to find motivation to actually start running again, train fairly hard, and be ready to run 13 miles. Right?  So, we found four other suckers friends who thought it sounded like a good idea at the time and signed up.  Actually, we asked three friends and I volunteered Vanessa and then told her after we signed her up. (I'm still waiting for a thank-you from her) Well, the race ended up selling out with a zillion teams, they held a drawing and only took 200 teams and ours was not one of them.  Awesome, right?!?!  I was pretty excited about this but kinda knew Jenna was never going to be ok about it, and therefore, I was not surprised when I received a text from her telling me she found a similar race scheduled for late May.  I guess the idea of an entire day out of the house and a new race t-shirt was enough to convince me that I would be ready to go by May...and the next thing I knew, Team WTF (where's the finish?) was born. 

 Spring is our busiest season and guess what?  I never found that motivation or made the time to train.  May 31 snuck up on me reeealll fast! The Wednesday before the race, WTF met at Si Senor to go over race plans. All of us were pretty nervous thinking about race day!
pre-race hydration!
 My game plan was to pray and rain dance like my life depended on it, but when Vanessa picked me up at 4:30am, the air was dry and muggy.  Damn.  It was go time!
The way the race works is the 80 miles are divided between six team members and each person runs three 3-7 mile legs and then the entire team runs the final mile together.  I chose to be runner #6 because it was "only" 12.65 miles which was less than almost everyone else and since I came up with the team name, I figured I got to pick first :)  Amy was our lead runner and as soon as she started, we jumped into the van and headed to where she would end and Joey would start. 
Jenna was ready to go!
Looking fierce!
 The morning was really fun.  We were all fresh, still smelled good, and were having a great time.  We literally got lost trying to find every hand-off station but I don't think I've ever laughed that hard.  My first run wasn't too bad.  3.84 miles on a fairly shaded trail that was busy with bikers and ran parallel to the Missouri River.  From the parking lot to the trail was a mile walk and since we got lost, we had to hustle to the trail so Vanessa wasn't sitting there waiting for us, but it was scenic and definitely somewhere I will take Scott and the kids back to this summer.  I felt really good most of the run and when I finished I was really shocked proud that I could run that far without training.  Yay me!
Vanessa captured this great picture of me crossing my first finish line.  Oh wait, that's her finger!

And then it got hot.  And the car got smelly.  It was so humid and there was very little shade on the trails and we were all dying.  Sitting in a car for over four hours before the next run may seem great(!), but it wasn't.  We had to change clothes after every run and went through two cases of water.  I threw up six times.  The Katy Trail is beautiful and perfect for running and biking but the bathrooms located every 10+ miles did not have running water and were more like  glorified Johnny-On-The-Spots.  I figured we would stop at gas stations between each run, but we only saw like one the entire day.  I HATED not being able to wash my hands...especially since they were so sticky from sweat and eating oranges. 
My second run was the worst ever.  I did not see one person or car the entire 3.75 miles.  Just a few snakes.  There were only a few spots of shade and I was running with the sun in my face.  I actually felt like I was running on the surface of the sun.  Most of the trail was wide open and I could see nothing but the trail ahead for miles on end.  It was crazy lonely.  I hated it!
Trying to cool down.  Sue's van pretty much ran for 18 hours straight with A/C on full blast.
Official race photo.  I think Ness had a great time!
Waiting for our runners
Go Ness! Go Jenna! We decided to combine one short leg of the race to finish before dark.  The trails would have been too dark and scary to be out there once the sun set.  And besides, the brewery closed at 9pm and we were all dying for real food! Several teams did the same thing.

The final team mile was up three steep hills, a right turn, and then down three steep hills to the finish.  Stupidest thing ever.  Like 80 miles wasn't enough?  I think my legs hurt more from those hills than the 14.27 hours spent running and in the car.
half-way up first hill and still smiling.  Cussing a lot, but still smiling!

 After cheeseburgers and beer, we loaded up the van for the final time and made the 1.5 hour trek home.  4:30am-10:30pm = one long ass day, but I had the best time and am actually glad my rain dances failed!!!! 
official race photo-Amy, Joey, me, Vanessa, Jenna, Sue

 On Sunday, I could barely walk. My thighs hurt so bad but there was no time to rest...I had 3 baseball games to sit through.  In fact, our entire team had major plans for Sunday~~Amy was hosting a family party, Joey was celebrating her anniversary, Vanessa had to sit through 6 hours of dance recitals, Jenna had to work a 12-hour shift, and Sue had to take her daughter to Camp Ondessonk.  Today is Wednesday and I am finally feeling almost normal again. 
I'm really glad Jenna forced asked me to do this race (3 months earlier than expected) because a day away from my normal life was well worth the four days of extreme pain :)   18 hours to put my worries on the back burner and focus on me was just what I needed. I'm proud of myself for not stressing over the lack of training (even though it would have been really smart to train) and have the confidence to know I would do just fine.  It wasn't pretty but I did it!  The older I get the less I worry about things turning out exactly right.  I could have backed out because I wasn't perfectly prepared, but then I would have missed out on so much. Besides, it's not like we were going to win.  The 1st place team averaged 7:07 miles! I could have trained for years and we still wouldn't have been anywhere near that!  Sometimes you just gotta jump right in and hope for the best!

 Thank you ladies for a day of awesome fun!  I learned so much from our completely inappropriate conversations that still make me laugh out loud when I think about them.  I'm ready to start training for our next relay race....well, maybe ;)
post signature

No comments: