When your free from any husband or fatherly responsibilities for a few hours what do you do? In my case, the answer would be run three times in less than 24 hours for a total of 23 miles!
I’m not going to lie to you. I’m physically and mentally beat up. And I mean that in the best way possible. 12 of us (myself, my wife, a bunch of her coworkers, and other friends) completed the 193.1 mile Ragnar Relay Adirondacks on Saturday. We left Saratoga Spa State Park in Saratoga Springs, NY at 7:00am Friday and finished together in Lake Placid Saturday afternoon around 1:35pm.
If you’re unfamiliar with Ragnar, it’s a 200-ish mile running relay. Each team is made up of 12 people or 6 if you’re part of an Ultra team and you run and run and run until it’s over. Each person hands off a slap bracelet to the next teammate and so forth. All hours of the day and night. Sleep when you can, run when you think you can’t. It was a ton of fun!
In all, I ran a total of 23 miles in less than 24 hours. I felt great and my runs were solid.
Running on tired legs is hard enough, but doing this in the pitch darkness of unlit roads, with no one else around, on only an hour or two of sleep is another beast. It could be argued that the mental piece of this event is more challenging than the running itself. I’d make that case.
My wife, Karen, ran her first leg of the relay just after me. She then had to drive back home and work that evening. She met us the next morning after her shift for her final leg of the relay. While she was gone, I picked up her second running leg, an additional 5.8 on top of the 7.9 I had just run. I figured what the hell, I’m out here to run so I might as well use this as some good training for my 31 mile ultra marathon charity run in three weeks. My confidence for that is now through the roof.
We had a great group of people, all pushing each other forward, laughing the entire way. I was impressed with the entire event. It was well coordinated, well-planned and I’d definitely consider doing this again. For more on our Adirondack adventure, check out the SENS Fitness Podcast Episode 2. We recap the race and interview some of the other members from our team.
Leading up to Ragnar on Friday and Saturday I put in a normal off-season training week. I lifted heavy on Monday and Thursday, took a rest day Tuesday (skipped a short 30 minute run) and enjoyed a track workout on Wednesday. As I mentioned last week, this off-season will focus heavily on running and weight training.
As we look ahead to next week, it’s more of the same. I will be sure to get back on the bike at least once. That will most likely be as a course recon for the 31-mile run.
Thank you for reading and thanks to those of you who understood my sense of humor! I got some negative feedback from last week’s blog about signing up for an Ironman after my wife said she wanted to have a second child. It was very tongue-in-cheek. Unfortunately, not everyone got the joke and strangers were critiquing my parenting and marriage. I promise, the jokes about fatherhood and my wife are all in good fun!