Today, being Valentine’s Day, I was thinking about being kind to myself/loving myself and what I do to work on that (because it’s definitely a work in progress!). Also, how to show people around me that I love and care about them. Running comes to mind, because what’s better than running? Sharing miles with friends, that’s what! There is something about lacing up your running shoes, meeting a good friend and logging miles.
May 19-20th, I’ll be in Canada with an amazing group of friends, to run the Niagara Falls Ragnar! This is going to be my first relay event and what better way to do it, but with this kick ass group of runners?!
We come from different running back grounds, paces and goals, with one thing in common…being a TEAM and helping each other succeed! That is a true sign of both love and friendship. The purpose of a Ragnar Relay is to conquer 200-ish miles of road running with 12 friends and 2 vans during a Ragnar Relay.
Are you curious about how all of this works? Here is the skinny on it!
“Teams cover 200-ish miles of running from point A to point B, on sidewalks, backroads, bike paths, paved trails and road shoulders. Form a 12-Pack team with 11 of your friends, family members or co-workers. Or you can form a 6-Pack team (open during regular registration periods during all Ragnar Relays), and we’ll pair you with another 6-Pack team to form a full team of 12 runners. For those looking for an even bigger challenge, form a 6-person Ultra team and conquer the course with half the team members.
Pile teams into vans or SUVs and tag team 200-ish miles, day and night, relay-style over two days and one night. Only one runner hits the road at a time. Each participant runs three times, with each leg ranging between 3-13 miles and varying in difficulty. Runners average about 17 total miles, with some of the shorter runner positions totaling 11 miles and some of the longer runner positions totaling 24 miles. Ultra runners take on 6 legs each, and average a full marathon (26+ miles).
While one person is running, the rest of your teammates are on support duty in your race vehicles. Teams of 12 require two vehicles (Runners 1-6 in Van One and 7 -12 in Van Two). Van One’s runners will cover the first six legs. As each runner begins, the crew in the vehicle can drive ahead, cheer their runner on and meet them at the exchange point to pick them up and drop off the next runner. After the first 6 legs, Van Two gets their chance to shine and starts putting in the miles.
Once your van’s runners finish the six legs, you can enjoy downtime, get food, maybe sleep, and then drive ahead to the major exchange point to wait for your other van to finish their six legs. All that stuff above? Yeah… you get to do it two more times.”
I met most of the team last June when I went to Toronto for Michelle, aka Coach’s, birthday. They are by far one of the most warm, inviting and social groups of runners I’ve had the pleasure of calling friends! Spending time with people like this, is what makes my heart happy, allows me to grow as both a runner and individual and have a great time. Being happy and nurturing friendships is so important! I’m pretty sure after 2 days in a van, running, making memories and having fun, this will become even stronger.
Have you participated in a Ragnar or other relay? Do you have any tips you can share with this PinkHat wearing newbie? Send em’ my way!!
Do you have a special day planned with friends or loved ones?