Thursday, April 29, 2010

Ragnar Relay

Boy am I tired. After leaving Boston and landing late Tuesday night, I woke up early on Wednesday and Thursday to teach and get ready for Ragnar Relay. Friday, I was up at 5:00 to get my 3 teams of runners to the starting line of the Ragnar Relay in Ventura by 8 am. I had no clue what was in store for us.

39 hours later, I finally got to sleep on Saturday night. In between was freaking amazing!!!!

All I knew about Ragnar was that we were supposed to have 12 runners per team and each runner would run 3 legs ranging from 4-9 miles per leg. At the end of the race, 200 miles would be completed with the finish line being in Dana Point. There were some safety rules we had to follow but that's all I really knew.

Our 3 teams of middle and high school runners started at 9 am on Friday morning. At the first exchange they were all dead even. Then things started happening. One girl from the second team went the wrong way and wound up running 1 mile in the wrong direction. We found her and didn't want to violate any rules so we made her run back to where she strayed off course. That put that team 16 minutes behind. the rest of Friday was spent driving a mile stopping and cheering then driving a mile and cheering as the runners would pass by.

Then night came. It is pitch black in some of the areas and thankfully we had 2 bikes to help illuminate the course and keep our runners safe. However, we only had 2 and needed a third bike for the 3rd team. Thank God we made it through the night without incident.

Saturday brought sunlight, heat and new cities we had never run through before. Finally, the 36th leg and we were almost done. We drove to the finish line to wait. After 200 miles, 2 of our teams were separated by only 10 seconds. AMAZING!!!!! Then we had to wait for 2 hours for our last team.

After talking to so many adults and learning that a lot of teams couldn't finish because they were tired, sore, or too slow, really made me proud to know that that was never an issue for us. We looked at 200 miles as a fun run and we knew we would finish. We just hoped for a decent time.

Looking back, I am absolutely amazed at how well a bunch of 13 and 14 year olds did. It was such a major accomplishment and I couldn't be prouder of all of them. Even though I didn't sleep for 39 hours, didn't eat very much, lived on coffee for an entire 2 days and still haven't recovered from the lack of sleep, I would do it again tomorrow if we could.

I can't wait until next year.

Thanks Ragnar Relay.

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