It’s here! My long awaited Ragnar DC with my son Daniel and his girlfriend Jess starts tomorrow at 6:15 AM when the first runner in Van 1 starts running. I’ve been looking forward to this weekend all summer and expect there to be many favorite Ragnar moments that I can add to my memories from my previous Ragnar Relays.
I’ve run four Ragnar Relays to date – two road and two trail, and I’ve loved each one for its own unique experience and the wide assortment of friends I’ve made and gotten to know better along the way. Running a Ragnar is one of those things you’ll either love or hate. I happen to drink the Kool-Aid and love the sense of satisfaction of completing all those miles under unusual conditions and on very little sleep. The camaraderie formed with teammates is so amazing and I’m looking forward to getting to know new friends over our 206.7-mile adventure.
As in my past two road Ragnars, I’m in Van 2 so we won’t be leaving Virginia until about 9 AM. We’ll arrive in Little Orleans at our first major exchange where my vanmates and I will check in and go through our safety inspections. Once we’ve taken care of all of those requirements, we’ll watch for Van 1 to arrive and together we’ll wait for Runner 6 to come charging down the hill so Runner 7 can take off.
This year I chose to be Runner 11 and I’m scheduled to run:
- Friday at 5:03 PM – 5.1 miles – moderate
- Saturday at 4:10 AM – 9.7 miles – very hard
- Saturday at 3:05 PM – 6 miles – easy
After stalking the weather for the past week, I’m holding out hope that the weather gods really are going to be with us this time and give us near-perfect late summer weather! Yes, Saturday’s high will climb to about 82°, but with low humidity; and for mid-September in DC, that’s not bad at all!
While packing for this weekend’s race I’ve had plenty of time to reflect over my last four Ragnar adventures. It was impossible to pick out my favorite Ragnar moments, but I kept coming back to a few memories that made me smile or tickled my funny bone.
So what have been my favorite Ragnar moments so far? What sticks out in my mind the most when reflecting back on each race? Here you go…
1. At my very first Ragnar, the 2014 Ragnar DC, I ran with with my Cruiser friends, and my first leg as Runner 8 was the toughest leg for Van 2 and had me running straight up the mountain for about two and a half miles with a thousand feet of elevation gain. I teasingly told my van-mates that I was going to make Sidling Hill my bitch (which I did, by the way) and they enjoyed reminding me of it as they took this video of me running up the mountain.
2. The following year, I ran the 2015 Ragnar Trail Appalachians with my MRTT friends. When we weren’t out trying to run, we were huddled together under a tiny portion of canopy trying to keep from getting pummeled by the pouring rain. Our runs were miserable slog-fests through ankle-deep mud that kept trying to suck off our shoes. My favorite Ragnar moment of that weekend was hosing the mud off just before hopping into the van to drive home.
3. Last fall during Ragnar DC 2015, my favorite Ragnar moment had to be when we stopped at IHOP to pick up pancakes to go. While waiting in the lobby of the restaurant for our order to be completed, we noticed that some of the other patrons coming in to eat were a bit inebriated, to the point that one young man said, “I’m so drunk; I need food.” Keep in mind that there were only a handful of customers since it was close to 3 AM.
Tired, I decided to lie down on the bench and rest while our order was being prepared. Just as I got in a comfortable position, a man leaving the restaurant asked, “You gonna be okay there?” As he started to walk out the door, it hit me, and I sat up laughing and responded to my teammates, “Oh my goodness, he thinks I’m passed out drunk!”
4. At Ragnar Trail Richmond Ultra 2016 I got to run with Meagan as my buddy runner. Even though this was our third Ragnar together, we don’t get to see each other nearly enough since she lives about two hundred miles away. Running all of our legs together was a rare treat!
5. Even though this hasn’t happened yet, I know my son Daniel and I will make many memories this year with the rest of our team, We Thought You Said Rum. Daniel is Runner 8, which was my spot two years ago and I’ve told him that he has to beat all of my times from that year, and if he does, that will definitely be a favorite Ragnar moment for me. The pressure is on, Daniel!
Van 1 has already arrived in Cumberland, Maryland so they can get a good night’s sleep before they start running at 6:15 tomorrow morning. From the pictures they’re already posting, I’d say they have some favorite Ragnar moments in the works as well!
- Have you run a Ragnar or similar relay?
- If so, what were your favorite Ragnar moments?
- Are you racing this weekend?
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Today I’m joining the DC Trifecta’s Friday Five Linkup with Courtney at Eat Pray Run DC, Cynthia at You Signed Up for What?!, and Mar at Mar on the Run! Please stop by these DC area bloggers’ blogs to say hello; and while you’re there, be sure to check out other bloggers who are also participating in the linkup.