I know, I know… I’m so far behind on blogs! I am trying to get Ragnar finished by tomorrow and do a post about my North Carolina trip to post on Wednesday! For now here is part 2 for Ragnar
After meeting our Ragnar team on Thursday night and decorating the vans, everyone was so excited to start the next day. I went home that night and finished packing my things and got went to sleep, ready for the next 48 hours of craziness.
We woke up at 4:50am and put our first set of running clothes on. We were supposed to meet the team at 5:30 at the start line. Julie was coming to our house and the rest of the team was meeting at Shannon’s to drive to the start line in Huntington Beach. As we arrived at the beach and the start line, we noticed hundreds of huge white vans, all decked out in window paint and decorations ready for Ragnar. There was such an excitement in the air as everyone couldn’t wait to start their race.
The girls from our van helped Van 1 check in and get ready for their first legs. Lisa was ready for the start at 6:15 and got ready for the 6:15 wave. After more pictures we were so excited and ready to begin. Lisa started and we were off to the vans. Van 1 was to go to the next transition and our plan was to go eat some breakfast. Van 2 didn’t have to run until later so we had time to kill before getting to exchange 6.
Nuun was a great Sponsor and set us tons of Nuun and water bottles for Ragnar! so we had to take a picture with their sign!
We drove down the coast a bit and stopped near dog beach so that we could cheer Lisa on as she ran. We cheered everyone on and they ran by. It was fun to meet Lisa on her first leg and watch the sunrise at the beach.
Lisa running by as we cheered!
After cheering on Lisa our Van headed to Coco’s to get some food. We ate plates full of bacon, eggs, and pancakes and then headed to our house to use the bathroom and print out some stencils for the van. It was fun laughing and taking pictures at the house to prepare for our legs. We decided we wanted to see if we could catch up with a few other Van 1 runners before we had to get to our exchange. We headed towards Mile Square Park to follow the Ragnar route and look for runners. Eventually we found Virginia running and yelled and cheered for her. We drove up a little ways and stopped to cheer her on and see if she needed anything.
One of the most fun parts of Ragnar is getting out of the vans and cheering for people. We always made sure to cheer on every runner that came by. It was great to see the smile on people’s faces as we cheered for them.
Cheering for Random Runners
After stopping for Virginia we drove to Angel Stadium so we could catch up with the group one more time before heading to our start. At Angel Stadium we cheered, took pictures, tagged vans, and had fun watching all the Ragnar craziness. Soon Van 1 arrived and Valerie was on her way to the exchange. As soon as Valerie came in Shannon was off on her first leg. Valerie’s family was waiting for her as she finished and it was great to meet them and see their excitement for her. Her daughter is a little “Toughie” in the making.
At Angel Stadium waiting for the other van!
With Shannon running we had to head to the Great Park for our first exchange and to check in. At the Great Park there were so many people and vans. We were so excited and getting more excited every moment. Funny thing with being Van 2 is the nervous, excited feeling you get before a race sticks with you for hours and hours until you finally start your first leg. After checking in we listened to our safety briefing, where they told us all the safety rules that we needed to know. Once we listened to the Safety briefing we got our flags and shirts and did a bit of shopping. This major exchange was full of energy as people were waiting to start their leg. Once Van 1 arrived we hung out with them and made sure Amy was ready for her first leg. Soon we found out the Helen was near and we went near the start to cheer for her and wait for Amy to start.
As Helen came in we cheered and cheered and watched as she passed the slap bracelet to Amy and Van 2 was off. The great park was CRAZY. It took is an hour to get out of the parking lot. While waiting to get out of the parking lot the Ragnaliens (my dad and uncle’s team) passed us going into the park. Amy asked us to meet her at mile 3 and 6 of her 9 mile leg to give her some water. We missed her at mile 3 as we were sitting in the traffic but found a place to meet her around mile 7. We stopped in the Asics parking lot and cheered for Amy and the other runners. We gave her water and headed off to our next exchange to get my mom ready for her leg.
Mom’s first exchange was at a small church. We arrived and got through the craziness of the parking lot. Julie did a great job of getting us through the cars and an amazing job at parking that beast. With Mom read for her run we waited for Amy to arrive at the exchange. Finally Amy came and slapped the bracelet on my mom and she was off on her first leg. With her off and Amy recovering we started toward Saddleback church for the next exchange.
Julie’s Awesome parking
As we were driving into the parking lot we remembered that we needed to get ice so we drove back down Glen Ranch (slowed to cheer my mom on) and stopped at a gas station to get ice and cold drinks. As we drove back into the parking lot we noticed my Aunt Cyndi standing on the corner as a volunteer! Once parked Kathy got out and got ready for her first leg. As she was getting ready Julie and I walked over to see my aunt and watch for my mom to come in. As we walked over we found my mom standing there waiting. OOPs. I ran to find Kathy and told her my mom was already waiting. We ran over and my mom slapped the bracelet so Kathy could start her first leg.
Mom waiting for us to show up
Once Kathy was running her leg we headed to the next exchange to meet her. My leg was next. As we drove to the exchange I started getting ready and was feeling really nervous. This leg was 6.7 Miles unsupported. Unsupported means that the van was not able to stop on the course and cheer for me or give me water. 6.7 Miles was a really long run to have no support.
As we arrived at the exchange I finished getting ready and went to the bathroom one last time. Once I was ready and we thought she would be coming soon we walked to the exchange. This exchange was kind off the side of the road. We waited for Kathy to come as I got more and more nervous. At this point I was just ready to start running. Finally Kathy arrived and I was off. Well I was off for like 100 feet until I got to the stop light. Once the light was green I had to wait for another stop light so I could actually start running. Finally I was off and heading to the trail. This leg was on the Aliso Trail. I was a beautiful run and I was feeling really good. I got really bored pretty quickly though. Without people cheering for you or other people with you it’s just not the same. At one point a rabbit passed in front of me and I got so excited. Finally I hit the water stop and was hoping that I was at mile 4. I ran and ran and ran. I was so worried that my uncle was going to pass me on this leg. I really didn’t want to get passed by him. After what seemed like an eternity running by myself I finally saw my mom standing at a corner. When I saw her I was so excited! I knew I had to be almost finished. She started to run with me and finally I saw the exchange area. No One mile to Go marker. After a super narrow right turn I saw Casey and slapped the bracelet on her wrist! I was so thankful to be done.
Casey finished her leg and the Ragnaliens caught up with us at the exchange. As we started Tina off, we watched as my cousin Cameron finished his leg and their last runner Melissa started hers. Then we were off to the major exchange point at Doheny State Beach.
Waiting for Cameron
Part 3 hopefully coming tomorrow!!