Never say never
I often say I'm never going to do something, then end up eating my words. I said I would never run a marathon, and of course that happened. I also said I'd never run a Ragnar Relay race, but here I am, registered to do my first one next month!
For those of you unfamiliar with how Ragnar works, it's a 200 mile relay race over 2 days with teams of 12 people (or 6 ultra runners). We are split into 2 vans, and over the course of the 2 days each runner has 3 running legs, around 20 miles total. Usually 2 daytime legs and one nighttime leg. The idea is to test yourself physically and mentally, running 3 times in 2 days with little to no sleep.
The reason I said I'd never do it is several, really:
1) I didn't want to ride (and sleep) in a van for 2 days
2) I didn't want to be in a smelly van with sweaty runners for 2 days
3) I didn't want to run in the middle of the night on the side of a highway
Well, here we are. I'm set to run Ragar del Sol with Team Sweatpink Arizona!!
So how am I getting past these issues?
Well the being in a van part, I'm just going to have to make the best of it and hope that my teammates are awesome (I've never met any of them!). I was told there may be designated sleep areas at community centers that we could crash at along the way.
As for the smelly/sweaty runner problem, we have a solution! Our team is being sponsored by Shower Pill, which are antibacterial cleansing body wipes for athletes. Hooray! Something tells me we really dodged a bullet there!
And lastly, the fear of being by myself in the dark in the middle of nowhere has some practical solutions as well. I'm going to have a reflective vest, headlamp, blinky lights, and my teammate's husband has offered to run as a pacer with any of us ladies who don't feel comfortable being alone on the road at night. Plus my nighttime leg "should" only be 5 ish miles. That seems doable. So how can I say no, right?
I'm hopeful for a great experience for this event next month. I hope to make some great new friends and cross another "I'll never" item off my list.
Have any of you ran Ragnar before? Any advice you can pass along?
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Hi, I'm Emily! I'm an avid runner in Arizona with a passion for travel and racing around the country!