Thursday, April 24, 2008

But I still Took Pictures

Jess and Dana monkeying around at a van exchange point.

Almost done, another 12 or so miles to Santa Cruz. Photo courtesy of Dana.

Group shot.

For the photoset, click here.

Good friends come and go all the time, people are always coming or going. You know how that goes. When I was first approached about doing this relay I declined because of the timing, this event used to be run in October. I knew I would be busy with my preparations for races and training for KM100. Wisely, I reconsidered - sometimes I can get so serious with this whole training and racing thing:) Janet who organized the team and her fiance JP will be moving out to Chicago in August and I thought it would be great to do one more event with them. As it turned out I not only got to spend time with these two but other really great friends as well - a win win.

Fortunately, I will be seeing more of these guys in the summer. JP signed up for the 50-mile distance at Tahoe Rim Trail, Janet will crew for him, and I'm in for the 100. Some of the runners in our van, like Jessica, will also be up in Tahoe the same weekend for the Trans Tahoe Race. A 6-person swimming relay across Lake Tahoe, no wetsuits allowed but partying sailboat crews acceptable. In for another 100. I haven't posted a schedule for my events this year. I was loathe to plan out a whole year and be stuck with a schedule, just signing up for whatever sounds right.

So I went in to the event just to have fun; 12 runners, 3 legs each, runs anywhere from 4 to 7.5 miles. The distances are something, they could even be hard if you run each leg strong and fast but no long run training. As it turned out I ended up working quite hard the whole weekend and was a runner for both vans. Lisa one of our runners for van 1 got sick and I ended up picking up two of her shifts. Since I was van 2 I had no sleep whatsoever. Soon as our van was done and my crew headed out for their 4-5 hours of downtime I was with van 1 running, when van 1 was done I was back with van 2 and this continued until the end of the event.

I was more than thrilled though; more running, more hangout time with all the folks in our group and the possibility of no sleep. Haha sign me up! I got to practice running tired, that queasiness in the stomach and shoulder burdening fatigue that only comes to me after being up for 24 hours. I ran every run hard, every single one of them, to the best of my ability short of sprinting; through the hills, through the flats, the trails, the bike paths, the crowded streets, all of them. I did however down a Starbucks Double Shot Espresso for two of those runs and before my last run I had some salt tablets with one Aleve. I met my personal goal and was quite stoked at the finish in Santa Cruz - run every route strong and fast, don't sleep.

We started in Calistoga at 12PM and we finished around 4PM Sunday in Santa Cruz. It was an amazing weekend. It was a bit cold, we'd start our runs freezing but we had a full moon and the night was as beautiful as the day. On my third run, a couple of hours before dawn, I was on a secluded bike path that wound it's way through trees next to a reservoir. I was alone and my lights were off. I looked to my right and saw the lake, the hills behind it and the big bright full moon above - breathtaking, awe inspiring.

Sometimes a good beer is what's needed, put away that Endurox R4 or whatever recovery drink you're having!


  1. Dude, that looks like so much fun! You're right Java Lava Ding Dong and the gang should do one, and of course you should come too! Or at least be our driver, ok? LOL

  2. Rick Said:more running, more hangout time with all the folks in our group and the possibility of no sleep. Haha sign me up!
    LOL ahhhh ur an Ultra Runner true to the heart :-)

    What a great event Bro & some good training for ur on those double duties, ur a stud!

  3. Yes, Java Lava Ding Dong would like to do one. LOL

  4. That looks and sounds like it was just a fantastic time, Rick. What a great group of friends you have. Cool pictures as well...especially of the beers at the end! :)

  5. Sounds like a great time and some good training as well. Good decision to reconsider.

  6. I am sorry now that I opted to do my century ride instead of The Relay! It looks like it was SO MUCH FUN! Maybe next year. I love the posts. Thanks for sharing!

    See you next weekend mister!

  7. Sounds like great ultra training and lots of fun too! : )

  8. Sounds like a blast. Hope I can do stuff like that (party van) when I'm older.