Team: Milk was a bad choice
At King Pine Dan and I were chatting about this relay and he had mentioned they needed another runner in their van. I was down 🙂 I knew Dan, Becky, TA, and had met Alex L. briefly at RTB last year so I figured it would be fun 🙂
Side note: I did say I would never do another relay race again after RTB bc I was absolutely destroyed after that race. But here I was agreeing to another.
A couple days before the race TA had to back out. Well shit. But somehow the stars aligned and he got the triff to take his place. For real??? I guess he was forgiven 😜
Lori and Petra ended up with the day off Thursday so we decided we would head up early and make a day of seeing the Maine coastline. We left around 10am and took our very leisurely trip to Bar Harbor. We stopped at the outlets and we stopped in Portland for lunch. We took in all the scenery on the way. It was really nice. Obviously we got matching headbands at the outlets bc Cari would have been really disappointed if we didn’t match. I actually really liked it, it’s the Adidas Freestyle Band.
We checked in to the cutest little hotel and decided to go grocery shopping and out to eat for dinner. Pretty sure I brought home 90% of the groceries we bought haha. We also walked around a little of Bar Harbor. Holy freaking beautiful!! Definitely need to go back for an actual vaca there.
Met a few more of the crew when they arrived. Loaded our stuff in the van. Plan was to meet outside at 5:20 for breakfast. Chatted with TA for a few, laughing about his fb comments. He totally gets us. Went to bed and got up bright and early… went to shower and realized some of the stuff I needed was in the van. Shit. Luckily Dan had commented on a FB post so I knew he was up. I messaged him and asked if there was anyway he could unlock the van. He’s so awesome he came out to meet me so I could get my stuff. I’m such a dumbass! He was talking about my race report for Patriot about how I mentioned my race hair takes the longest. It was funny. Showered and went to breakfast with the whole team.
Met the rest of the team. We sat at two different tables. Walked back to the hotel and headed to the start to check in and get Dan ready to go. He was runner 1. Had way too many laughs about the lobster van 2 drew on their van 🤣 laughed about the guy wearing the singlet. It was awesome! Just spent time chilling and Dan was off at 8am.
Capture the flag became a thing after this. We succeeded.
Can you find a cooler team than this??
I had tons of time to just chill. I was runner 6. So I had hours from when runner 1 went off until it was my turn to run. I thought I wasn’t going to like that but I actually really did. The guy at the first transition told us there was a portapotty challenge. #challengeaccepted
First run was at 11:20am. It wasn’t bad. We had the rainy runs, but I didn’t mind. The first half of the run was scenic and pretty. The first mile was straight downhill the last mile was a gradual uphill. It wasn’t bad at all. Realized as I was coming in I had no idea who I was handing off to. Meaning I had no idea who the first runner in van 2 (runner 7) was. Oops. Luckily it was small and he was the only one waiting when I came in 🙂 went to slap it on his wrist but he grabbed it with his hand so I kinda slapped it on his hand. Ha sorry Ben!
We went to lunch after that. No pressure just the whole team was waiting on me to finish to go eat 😉 then we hung out at a school for a few hours waiting for our turn to go again. We stretched, foam rolled, and just hung out. Runner 12 took an accidental detour, got picked up by another van that saw her off course and came into transition from the wrong side. It was super cute and really funny. We joked that this was the van that picked her up 😜
We drove transition to transition like before, swapping runners, taking pics, cheering everyone on. We got to my transition and it was really cool. It was dark and on the ocean. I still had about an hour to wait bc Becky are I were both doing our longest leg. Walked around chatting with Alex C and Lori. It was just a really cool atmosphere with the fog and darkness. Before you knew it, Becky was coming in and I was off for my second run.
Run 2, leg 18 6.9 miles
At 9:20pm. Lori had me try her Noxgear vest for this run and it was AWESOME! Didn’t feel like I was wearing anything and loved the bright colors. I really need to order one (edited to add I ordered one and I still absolutely LOVE it!! And yes you are required to have safety gear at a relay race). I legit have no excuse bc my tri club gets a discount on it. I was pretty pumped but slightly nervous to do this run. I have never run at night alone before. Not even in my small quiet town let alone a place I didn’t know at all. I told my team I would be slowing my estimated pace a bit here so give me a couple extra minutes at transition. I am so glad I told them bc it was not far into this run I was totally alone running through a state park. That meant no street lights, pretty much nothing but trees and a road with no shoulder. I slipped off the edge a couple times bc it was a little broken up. There were cars driving through which I couldn’t decide was nice or just creeped me out more. It was really hard to keep my head in the game so I text TA saying it was super scary. Thank god he was still awake bc he definitely kept me distracted for a while. I would shoot off a text, run, read the reply a little while later, respond, run, repeat. It also meant I had to slow to a walk to respond but I was ok with that. It gave me a minute to collect myself. I thought a couple times I wish I was a super fast runner so this run would be over quicker 😜 I also was pretty sure I was going to die and the only person that would know was 3 hours away, well until I didn’t show up to meet my team 😜 I ran by a dark farmhouse set back in the woods surrounded by fog and thought yup I bet Jason is in there, I’m a goner because nobody ever runs faster than Jason leisurely walks in his hockey mask. I also couldn’t decide if I should point my head lamp up the road and look for moose and bears or point it to the ground and let it be a surprise attack 😜 my team waited for a check in around the 4 mile mark, at the top of a ridiculously steep hill. I ran by and said “this sucks! This shit is straight out of a horror film” and kept on running. They checked in again at mile 5.5 but I was fine by then, I was almost in town and there were street lights and inns around. I did hand off my water bottle to them though. Running through town with all the shops lit up was cool. There were people walking around and I ran by two guys so I covered my headlamp as I passed them and they laughed and said thank you. Passed another guy carrying pizza and it smelled so good I was tempted to ask him for a slice 😉 Made it to the Y, was flagged in which was cool. Handed off to Ben and van 1 was done round 2. Hopped in the van and we drove to the next van transition area. I was freezing bc I was sweaty and wet from the drizzle.
Text TA to say I didn’t die. I’m not really sure he was all that interested to know 😜but I live to annoy him. I succeed daily. The school we were at had free showers and mats to sleep on. Yes!! I took a shower and then curled up with the triff and managed to get a solid few hours of sleep 🙂 much better than the 20 min of sleep I got at RTB lol. Got up around 4 for us to be on again. We stopped for coffee and life was good. Yes I did bring travel size toiletries in case I got to shower, I did not at RTB and was fine, but I always bring it just in case. My absolute favorite travel toiletry is the travel venus razor. Seriously. I have two of them. One in my gym bag and one in my travel bag.
The first transition had fresh out of the oven cinnamon rolls and coffee from a bakery. Alex was going to be a good boy and not have one but true to form, I was a bad influence and he did. #winning. Got schooled for two days about all things Maine by him. That guy knows a lot about Maine. I loved all the small towns along the coast. It is beautiful there.
Anyways per usual we drove transition to transition cheering on our runners. Relaxing, having fun. Honestly just taking in how epic this race was. We got to know each other better, we laughed, we had serious conversations. Took 7,000 pictures 🙂
And then it was time for my last run. I told them all I was taking my job as the van anchor very seriously. Meaning I was going to stop our forward progress dead in the water bc they were all waiting on me to go out for breakfast. No pressure.
Run 3, leg 30 3.7 miles
I was happy my last run was my shortest run. I felt great though. My quads were sore but other than that felt great. The run was fine. Through another town. This was also the only run I saw another runner haha. One short steep hill. We were supposed to run on the sidewalk and I tried but I was getting annoyed because the sidewalk was way hillier and it was pitched so I felt like I was running off balance. So needless to say I jumped over to the road. And the shoulder was super wide so why not lol. Yea, I’m that girl. There was one short super steep hill, but overall it was a pretty flat run. I had to cross some busy intersections but the cars were fairly nice about not making me wait long. Came into the transition area, still had to run a decent way, but it was nice. Handed off to Ben and van 1 was officially done!!
We started our drive to the finish line in Portland. I changed in the van haha. We went to lunch and I was slightly disappointed in myself for not being able to clear my plate this time 😜 We walked around the finish area, hung out in a cute little coffee shop and definitely enjoyed the AC and free wifi. Lori and Alex C. spent a lot of time chit chatting and I totally zoned out on them. I felt bad.
Petra met up with us. We packed up our stuff and just hung out waiting for the last runner so we could run through the finish together. It was really awesome! Our entire team was really kick ass! Hung out with friends, strangers became friends. Met some really kickass folks. It was an absolutely epic three days! Everyone was so chill, no drama. 200 miles complete 🙂
I was a little worried my body wouldn’t play nice after coming off of a 70.3 and then running 15.5 miles over the three legs, but I was over the moon happy that nothing hurt. Not during or after. Drew has been a life saver. I did make sure I got my recovery in after every run: recovery shake, compression sleeves/socks, foam rolling and stretching. I played around with a lot of recovery drinks but my absolute favorite is: coconut water, Vega recovery accelerator, and Great Lakes Collagen. I mix the two powders together and put them in a small container and bring coconut water and a shaker bottle. It’s been a huge game changer in how well my legs recover after runs. For regular fuel on a run it’s always Glukos. I love love love Glukos because it’s all natural and it’s really easy on my stomach. There’s never a point where they start to sit heavy. But the absolute best thing I brought with me was the multiple USB port car charger. It was soooooo easy for all of us to charge stuff whenever bc we didn’t have to fight over a charger 😉