Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Ragnar Wrap-Up in Words

I still have so many thoughts on this. But rather than say, "This totally sucked!" I am going to word it "How it could be better."

1. Better team name. Our official name as known on the Ragnar records was "The Church Ladies." Chuck came up with it on a whim, and we never bothered to change it. But while running my third leg, the perfect name came to me. It's so perfect I don't even want to share it; but if we run again, I will definitely go public with it.

2. Better camp situation. Most of this year's crappiness was due to the wet conditions. There's really not much you can do after two inches of rain and about eight inches of mud. But next time I'd really want a shelter (like this) and a table. We could set out the food and chairs, and it would be a more communal space that would encourage visiting. It has to be better than hanging out in a water-logged tent.

3. Better team spirit. With a better team name and a better camp, this one would be easy. Decorating would be super fun, and I'm sure I could find something to sew for it. Banner? Table cloth? Costumes? Who knows and who cares. It would be awesome. I want that baton.

4. More people. Instead of a team of eight (for the trail Ragnar you only need eight, which is unlike the road Ragnar teams of 12), we'd get a team of 16. That way everyone has a buddy for every leg. When we realized that our running paces were not likely to get us finished before the required 4 p.m., we ended up doubling up on some of our legs. Can I tell you how much more fun it is to run 6.2 miles with friends? So much more fun. Imagine if every leg was with a buddy. That would be awesome. My first leg nearly brought me to tears. But if I had someone to commiserate with on just how horrible it was, I'm sure I'd be able to laugh about it far earlier than I did.

5. More realistic expectations. About twenty minutes into my first leg, I thought I had gone about two miles. I looked at my Garmin and imagine my surprise when it told me 0.89. I was convinced it was broken. You know, I was in the wilderness and it wasn't registering; I was sure I was somewhere around two miles. I continued to be delusional about the watch until I reached mile which point I reached the sign that said, "One mile to go!" I about died. Seriously? How had five miles taken this long? Oh right: the nearly-impassible muddy trail. Next time I will not be so disheartened by the (much, much) slower pace.

That's it! I think that's pretty good, right?! Of course, number six should be the weather, but there is no controlling Mother Nature.

Looking back, it really is easy to say it was fun. But you better believe that I could not say that statement until I crossed that finish line..

P.S. So did I do anything right? Yes! I brought three entire changes of clothes, one for each of my legs. Because of the rain, this was key. It meant dry outfits for every run. Also, I brought two pairs of running shoes. This meant that if one got soaked, I had another dry pair waiting for me. But when both got soaked, well...


  1. Great job on your race! I'm very impressed. But sorry about all that mud. My dad did the ragnar once and said he would never do it again! ha ha. And I will never do it either! But I'm not a runner. Well, under 5 miles is ok for me, but that's about it!

  2. I think you're awesome! Way to go!