May 7 was the Avenue of the Giants half marathon. Originally a few friends and I signed up for a half marathon in Sacrament for the end of April. We were excited to have a race close and that a … Continue reading
I Recently did a Ragnar 101 event on Facebook. It was successful so I want to share some of my information with you! It will be in a few different segments.
What is Ragnar Relay and how does it work?
There are two types of Ragnar Relays, Road races and Trail races. So far I have only done the road races, so most of my information is about the road version of Ragnar. I will try to include as much trail information as I can throughout. I do plan to do a Ragnar Trail this year!
Ragnar Races are 12 person (Road) or 8 person (Trail) relay races. Each road races covers around 200 miles of running as a team. The team is split into two vehicles with the first 6 runners in one and the second 6 in the other. (more about vehicles in another post). Each car does their 6 legs letting one runner go and driving to the next exchange to switch out runners. Once all runners in their car have done their first set of legs they hand off to the other car and then go get food and rest before their next set. Each runner runs 3 separate legs of the race averaging around 12-15 miles total. Most teams finish in around 24-30 hours.
Teams can have less runners if needed for the team. In 2015 our Napa team only had 8 runners. It ended up being really fun as we were all in one van together and got to be one team for the entire race. In this race we skipped the set of legs that those runners would have done. Some people choose to make up those legs by running extra legs when they do not have enough runners.
For a typical Road Ragnar the cost per person without hotels usually ends up around $300. This depends on what car you use or rent, decorations and team shirts ordered, sleeping arrangements, food, gas, etc. This seems like a lot of money, but it can be done cheaper. If you are willing to cut out conveniences and comfort you can make your Ragnar experience pretty cheap.
When you form a team it is best to get all the registration money up front. This makes people have a financial commitment in the race and they are less likely to drop out. Nothing worse that trying to find a replacement last minute because team members aren’t committed.
So if you have decided you are going to do a Ragnar Relay check out their website to decide which race you want to do. I love Socal and Napa! Then find 11 friends (or strangers) to sign up with you and form your team. Then start the planning and training process. My teams have always been from different states and countries. This can make planning difficult. We usually set up a private Facebook group for the race so that we can talk about all things Ragnar and make plans. If not everyone has Facebook, we usually do group emails.
I had such a great weekend in Sunriver, Oregon. As many of you remember the half marathon I had planned for Memorial Day weekend was canceled. As one of my goals for the year is to finish 4 half marathons, … Continue reading
I was really sad when my half marathon memorial day weekend was canceled. I had trained so hard and was so excited to do back to back half marathons. thankfully I had already signed up for the See Jane Run … Continue reading
Another successful Ragnar Relay! This time I was on the Ragnaliens team! My van consisted of some pretty amazing people, me, my mom, my dad, my cousin Cameron, friends TC, and Melissa. We had such a fun team of people. … Continue reading
My birthday this year finally fell on a Sunday! Which is race day!!! So of course I decided I had to do a race on my birthday. I searched around and finally found the mud factor mud run in Sacramento! A mud run, how can I say no!?
So I registered and started thinking about what I would wear! Of course I had to represent some of my teams and had to show people that it was my birthday. So I put a green band on my arm to keep my key and my garmin safe and represent slytherin! I also wore my Ragnar ambassador headband. I usually don’t wear orange, but for a mud run it was the perfect splash of color. I also wore a sash that said “it’s my birthday” It was fun having people say happy birthday the whole time!
sadly my friend Sam wasn’t able to go and we looked for someone to take her spot. Unfortunately we couldn’t find anyone and I was worried I would have to run by myself 😥 thankfully one of the girls from one of my running groups signed up and agreed to let me run with her.
I was worried about the obstacles and worried I wouldn’t make it over the walls. I figured I would just take them one at a time, attempt everything, and try my best.
I was able to conquer every obstacle. Even the big wall I was most worried about. It felt so good to accomplish it.
The race ended with a huge slide and a mud crawl. We got covered in mud and had great after pictures.
After we finished we went over the the creek we had waded through to rinse off. It was perfect and way better than waiting for showers. It was like a giant pool party!! I always wanted a pool party for my birthday!
Before the race I had looked around on pinterest and asked people tips about mud runs. Here are the biggest tips people gave. Some I followed some I didn’t
-wear pants or socks to cover shins and knees (great idea for knees when you crawl through gravel)
– wear gloves (didn’t do this… maybe for a more intense one)
– tape your shoes on (I just tried my shoes really tight… I don’t mind barefoot if needed)
– put your hair up (duh! )
– put your phone in a bag ( I didn’t want to risk anything so I didn’t bring my phone)
– bring a wet towel/wet wipes for after (definitely needed! I put a wet towel in a baggie, it was perfect. I wish I had brought 2)
– bring sheets or something to change in (I do this for Ragnar relays! I have a strapless dress I use for changing its perfect!)
– bring bags for your wet/ muddy clothes (yes!! And for your shoes. I used three grocery bags)
-bring a squirt top water bottle for hard to reach areas ( didn’t use it because we were able to clean off pretty well.)
-roll in the mud and don’t be afraid of getting covered! (Yes! It was great to be covered)
That is all I can think of for now.
It was a great race! We had so much fun and I look forward to my next one!
So we signed up and look forward to the race. 2 miles to Marie’s donuts in Sacramento, eat 6 donut holes, and run 2 miles back. Seriously who doesn’t want to do that race. To top it all of it is benefiting children at UC Davis Children’s Hospital.
It was such a fun run even though it was raining and I had gotten off work at 3am and didn’t sleep. I decided it was perfect Ragnar training!
*This picture was from our first surf city half marathon! Many of you know that around 5 years ago I ran a half marathon. Before that I never thought of myself as a runner. I barely trained for that race … Continue reading
Our next runs were going to be night legs. Night legs are always really fun. The first leg for our van, Lauren’s leg, was so cool. The start was decorated with this long path full of lights. It really got all of us pumped for our runs! After Lauren took off I started getting all of my stuff ready. Night runs are crazy because it is so dark. Ragnar is awesome because they require everyone to wear a forward light, a reflective vest, and a rear blinking light on all night runs.
My run started at a park in Santa Rosa. I was ready to get my run started so I could conquer the hill and know I only had one leg left to run! As Lauren ran in and slapped to me I started running up the hill. This hill was killer. I ran a lot of it but did walk a lot of it as well. After the fist hundred feet or so, it was really dark. There were no street lights and all I had was my headlight. The fog was also really thick and my light just reflected off the fog. I couldn’t see more than 3 feet in front of me. There were also a lot of tree roots coming through the sidewalk. This was by far the most dangerous run I have ever done. As I came into the next exchange I was so proud of myself. I killed the hill and I finished super strong.
I was so excited I jumped up to slap the bracelet on Valerie. As I came down from my jump there were a lot of wet leaves on the ground and I slipped and fell straight on my butt. It was so embarrassing as there were about 50 people standing around and saw the whole thing. Thankfully I didn’t hurt myself but it was really funny.
After all of legs were finished we planned to go get food. On the way we ran into a lot of traffic. We found out that the other van, between a couple of runners decided to take a detour and go get ice. They were so far away from their exchange with their runner coming in soon. We decided to go to the exchange to pick up their runner and Lauren (our runner) would run their next leg so they could get to the next exchange without worry. Lesson learned don’t stop anywhere between your runners. Just go straight to the next exchange. When we arrived at the exchange they still weren’t there and I started to prepare in case I needed to run their next leg too. Thankfully they showed up just before Lauren came in and they were able to finish the rest of their legs.
After the craziness we went to find food and chill before our next set of legs. As soon as we sat down to eat, we got word that the other van was almost finished with their legs and we were going to have to run again soon. We packed up our sandwiches and headed for the next meeting place. Since Lauren had taken one runners leg, one of their runners took Lauren’s run. (I was so jealous because Lauren was finished with her runs and the weather started getting hotter and hotter.) Finally I was ready for my final leg. I waited and waited. It got Hotter and Hotter. I was started to get worried that the heat was going to be a major problem on my run.
Finally I was able to start my last 2ish miles! With water in my hand I started running. It was so HOT! I was running by all these vineyards and grape vines and just praying for some shade. It was so hot that when there was a little piece of shade I would just walk through it so I could actually stay a little cooler. Finally I could see the finish line and I picked up my pace. The finish was beautiful with all these grape vines. I was so excited to be done! I had finished my second Ragnar!!
When our last runner was finally off we headed for the finish line. We were all so excited to be Ragnarians and get to the finish line to meet the rest of our team and get our beers. We all crossed the finish line together and took a million pictures! Those of us who did both SoCal and Napa got our massive Gold Rush medals and took pictures as a team. Sadly Ragnar had not gotten our Napa Valley medals in time and we weren’t able to get our finishers medals. After all the pictures we headed to the party area and got our beers and hung out before our drive back.
Every Ragnar is so AWESOME! We had such a great time. My runs sucked but I still enjoyed it so much! During every Ragnar I think “why the heck do I do this?” The day after through all my exhaustion I always start dreaming of my next Ragnar. I think the next one will be SoCal again in April! I can’t wait.
Those of us that finished both SoCal and Napa got an extra medal that was huge!
After the fun we had at Ragnar SoCal, Team Tough Chik decided we needed to do another Ragnar. At first I was hesitant to sign up. With the job I have now I wasn’t sure I was going to have … Continue reading