Saturday, August 30, 2008


Last weekend I participated in "The Mother of All Relays". What a kick in the pants good time! I was part of the team "Headhunter Voodoo Dolls" from my club, Lacamas Swim & Sport. 12 girls, split into 2 vans, covering 197 miles in less than 2 days. I was in Van 2 along with DeDe (best van captain ever!), Lisa, Juliet, Sondra, and Nadine. We met up at the club around 11am and headed over to the FredMeyer in Sandy, OR for the first major van exchange point. Van 1 had started much earlier in the morning up at Timberline Lodge to kick off the event. Each person runs a total of 3 legs and we continue to leapfrog each other all the way into the beach at Seaside, OR. You sleep when you can (which isn't much) and you eat what your body can tolerate (which isn't much).
Van 2 Ladies:

I had been given Leg 11, which is actually Leg 11, Leg 23, and Leg 35.

Leg 11: 4.39 miles, ranked easy.
Time = 00:48:35 (pace = 11:04/mi)

This leg was mostly flat, but really hot and stuffy. It went along the Springwater Trail in East Portland, along Johnson Creek. The trail had many homeless guys along it and I was thinking that running this during the evening wouldn't be much fun. The odor from the creek (or was it from the transients) was a bit overwhelming at times. I saw very few other runners, which was a bummer. I just remember being hot and cranky. Not the best way to start out the relay for me. My predicted pace was 11:11, and I ended up with 11:04. I hoped I would do even better, but I'm okay with that time.

Leg 23: 4.18 miles, ranked easy.
Time = 00:40:02 (pace = 9:35/mi)

My second leg was MUCH better and more enjoyable than the first. We were tired since we hadn't napped at all since the start, but it was during the night and the temperatures were cool. This leg was also pretty flat, but had more of a rolling nature. I like running in the dark on unfamiliar roads because I can't see the hills coming and I can't tell how long they are. That's a good thing for me. My estimated pace for this leg was 10:44 and I blew that out of the water with a 9:35!!!

Leg 35: 7.28 miles, ranked hard.
Time = 01:26:36 (pace = 11:54/mi)
My third leg was my longest and most difficultly rated leg. There was also no vehicle traffic allowed on the course (i.e., no van support and no water aid), it was half on paved trail and half on loose gravel, and mostly in hot sun since all of the clear-cutting allowed for zero shade. I LOOVVVED my second run, but this one was pretty cool too. Mostly just because I was exhausted, it was hot, and I was able to push my body to stick it out and not walk.

My pace was a little bit slower than my predicted time (11:22), but considering I was going on no sleep in 35 hours and had only eaten 1 PB&J in the last 18 hours (long story, but my stomach was NOT happy with me, so I pleased it by not feeding it), so I did pretty fantastic I think.

I was carrying a 12oz container of Gatorade and hadn't taken in much when I came upon a young guy that was in a really bad way. He was walking slowly and sort of stumbling along. I offered him some of my drink and when I actually saw his face and realized how bad of shape he was in, I wouldn't leave until he finished it. I was so happy when I saw him cross the finish line only about 5 minutes after I did!

After my last leg, we hauled ass to the beach in order to cross the finish line with Nadine and get our group photo taken.

Afterwards, we all sort of disbanded and went our separate ways to shower and get ready for an evening of partying on the sand. Ken (best fiance ever and driver for Van 1) and I were staying with Sondra, RustyBalls, and DeDe at a 1,000 trails campground not too far away. It was awesome! After cleaning up, we headed to the party and gorged ourselves on yummy food and plenty of tasty adult beverages. Finally at around 11pm we headed back to camp for a much needed night of sleep.

Evening activities:

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