Relays – It’s Something Special

Thursday’s Workout: 1 Hour Vinyasa Yoga
Friday’s Workout: 8 Miles @ 9:49
Saturday’s Workout: 18 Miles @ 9:36
Monday’s Workout: 1 Mile warm-up @ 9:15; 5 x 1 Mile @ 8:27; 1 Mile cool-down @ 9:37
Tuesday’s Workout: 45 Minutes Strength with Susan
Wednesday: Rest Day

Today’s Workout: 1 Mile warm-up @ 9:40; 4 x 1 Mile @ 8:23; 1 Mile cool-down @ 9:36

One week from tomorrow I will be participating in my second Reach the Beach relay race with 11 other FABULOUS human beings.  The race is just over 200 miles and takes about 18 hours.  After completing the relay last year I would have signed-up for this year if they had made it available.  I felt something at the end of that race that I haven’t felt after any other race and the only distinguishing factor, other than the lack of sleep, was the team aspect.  No matter how many times I’ve ran with someone, at the end of the day our individual names were listed next to our times.  With the relay it was “Did You Know Kate Ran Boston” that crossed that finish line and that is something special, something I really miss when it comes to the normal race atmosphere.

Below are my top 10 reasons you should seek out a relay race and sign-up faster than a runner who spies an available port-a-potty pre-race.

  1. With lots of time in a 12-person van the introverts among us could perceive this to be a potentially stressful event.  I’m a loaner extrovert….that makes no sense but sadly is the lot I’ve been dealt…so take it from me that the balance of people versus alone time is pretty good.  If you pick the right group or even more specifically the right van (there are usually 2 per team), this type of race can be a pleasant experience for ALL personality types.  In our team’s case we put the calm, logical, quieter runners in van 1, and then stuck all the crazies in van 2.  I will give you one guess which van I am in.Me RTB
  2. You get to decorate a van with markers and not get in trouble for it!RTB DYK
  3. You learn a lot about safety and will have a wide variety of reflective gear for regular training – it’s a two-fer!
    RTB Safety
  4. You will participate in and pay witness to magical moments like this.RTB magic Moments
  5. You will feel like THIS after you finish your first leg.  Disclaimer: I cannot guarantee there will be an adorable cow in the background of your post-leg picture but that grin will DEFINITELY be there!RTB 1st leg
  6. Driving in a 12-passenger with 5 other people for 36 hours is a “special” experience.  You learn lots of new vocabulary terms like “cave of wonders” – thank you Cosmo magazine.  Inhibitions are thrown to the wind, “Did Glenn just see my butt?  Oh my goodness Glenn just saw my butt! Oh who the f*ck cares I’m getting out of these pants.”  Best part though is that you will FOREVER have this unique bond with 5 other people.  You did this CRAZY thing together!  You can retell stories to others but it’s a lot of “I guess you had to be there.” so just don’t bother and laugh to yourself enjoying the memories.RTB Van
  7. You will take post-leg finish pictures at 3:30 in the morning and STILL have that goofy grin on your face.RTB leg 2
  8. This is just before the finish last year.  Some of Kate’s leg were longer than she had run in a year (stupid injuries!).  She powered through like a champ but asked Glenn to join her for the final leg as an extra oomph.  We’re a team, so obviously he did.  Sadly I can’t seem to find our actual finish picture as we all crossed together but it really wouldn’t do it justice since you wouldn’t be able to hear us chanting “Did you know?!?!” “Kate ran Boston!” anyway.  Everything we did was for the team.  This is the best picture I could find that captured that 🙂RTB Beach
  9. The energy throughout the race is just like THIS!  Could we be any cuter?!?!!?
    10694468_10152564029619003_3851759039057393643_o (1)
  10. Last but not least, there is this.  11 people that I knew a little now hold a VERY special place in my heart.  We were a mix of paces but there was never any pressure on the slower pacers (your’s truly) to run any faster.  We were each simply asked to do our best and contribute to the team.  I ran some of my fastest miles over the 24 hours – all of us did.  We had calculated everyone’s finish time for each leg so we knew when we had to be where and every runner, every leg came in under the ETA.  That’s what you do for your team.RTB Team

Pulling together this list and this compilation of photos has made me just that much more excited about next week.  Our team will be different as a few weren’t able to join us this year and they will be missed.  We won’t be able to recreate last year but honestly we never could anyway.  This year is a new team, new name (“Hot to Trot”….I will leave you to your imaginations), new course but the core is the same “12 people running toward the same finish as a TEAM!”

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