I lost all power on the cell phone that I’d been using to do those hourly posts so I wasn’t able to give a race wrap-up. Then on Saturday and Sunday, too tired to post. Here’s what happened during the second half of the race.
Hour 13 and beyond.
When it is your team’s turn you focus much harder on the race. For example, you have to figure out how to get to the next transition area. Following written instructions without a map is like trying to see an elephant just by reading about it. It’s a wonder we only got lost on a few occasions. We definitely need to bring a map next time.
You also start to think about your next run. Relay races feel different than personal races. There is much less stress. Sure you get out there and run as hard as you can but your exact time is not terribly important. If you run a minute or two slower or faster it really doesn’t matter in the scheme of things. A long relay like this is all about finishing.
Finally, when it’s your van’s turn forget about sleeping. We started this race phase at about 2:00 am and no one slept. Anticipating your own turn, driving the van, looking for the next transition area keep everyone occupied enough that you don’t sleep. Keep that in mind if you’re doing one of these relays.
During this fourth phase of the race we had some excellent performances. My brother Paul cruised through a 7.7 mile leg finishing in under an hour. Birthday boy John Kelly kept pace with another team’s runner and legged out 6+ miles in a solid 8 min/mile. The Brewmaster kept it close with his 3 mile run and my sister Fay had a great time in her 6+ mile run. Then it was my turn, a short 4.0 miles.
For this run, I felt great! I started quick and kept it up the entire way. With no distance markers or other runners around, I couldn’t tell how fast I was going. No matter. I just ran and juggled as fast as I could. Half-way through I saw another runner who had started about 5 minutes before me. He was walking. Must’ve bonked. I set my sites on him and picked up the pace. As I passed him he gave out a groan and a sigh. Poor guy. Why do runners do this to themselves? At the finish area I saw my entire team. That was great. Smiling wide, I entered the hand-off area and snapped the baton bracelet on Lisa’s wrist. She was off, I was temporarily done. My time 27:30, no juggling drops.
Now, it was time to get a little breakfast, take a nap and wait.