Monday, February 22, 2010

HMRRC Winter Marathon Relay race report.

So, what do you do on a Sunday morning when the temperature is hovering just above 30 and the wind is a biting one, whipping from the WNW with gusts reaching 41 mph? (Yes, 41.)

Run a marathon relay, of course!

Friends, Sunday was windy and cold and, honestly, if two other runners weren't relying on me to run my leg of the relay, I might not have raced. It was just so flippin' windy. But race I did and I'm so glad.

It was a great time! Sure, our team placed 58th out of 59 teams. Who cares? We just had a good time.

Here's our team before the race:

Pink ladies! Suzy, Amanda, me.

The race was split into three legs: 9.2m, 5.7m and 11.3m. Suzy ran the first leg, I ran the second and Amanda (who is running a half-marathon in two weeks) ran the third. As Suzy warmed up and then took her place at the starting line, Amanda and I hung out on the sidelines and cheered the runners on when they took off.

Here's Suzy, looking ready to run even though she had been battling a stomach bug, at the start:


Note the nutty people wearing shorts:


Yikes! Anyway, after the start, we headed inside to get out of the wind and figure out how to prepare for our legs. I ate a banana and had some water and coffee. And then we just hung out and chatted, which was cool because we got to know each other a little more. We decided to make our way to the relay exchange a little too early so we ended up standing around for almost a half hour. At about 1:37 into the race, Suzy ran in to the exchange and off I went!

Running a relay is very different from all other races. For starters, you can't be exactly sure when you are going to run so warming up and fueling is slightly off. When you do start, you start alone. To me, that was the weirdest part. I ran alone for most of the race. There were many super fast guys who passed me along the way and I passed a few people (none of the fast guys) but, overall, I was running alone.

I settled into what felt like a decent pace and just ran. There were stretches when I felt good and others, when the wind was strong enough to screw up my breathing, when I didn't. Unfortunately, the last 1.5 miles were straight into the wind and I felt like I was pushing and pushing and hardly moving.

But I finished in 50:25 and handed off to Amanda.

Suzy and I booked it inside where I cooled (ha!) down and fueled up. After changing into dry clothes, it was time to go cheer for Amanda at the turn around:


We cheered loud and hard and then booked it inside again and I headed straight to the massage table. My massage felt awesome!

With the massage done, I decided to eat some soup and stretch a little more. Suzy and I hung out and then made our way to the finish line to see Amanda come across at 4:22:59. She ran 1:53 for her leg, which was well under the 10:30 pace she thought she might run! Just awesome!!!

Here we are after the race (happy to be done!):

Suzy, Amanda, me.

Overall, it was just a GREAT experience. Running on a team like that is a much different experience than just running a race on your own. I loved the feeling and I'm so happy that I met these two women through the blogging world and we've become running buddies. We plan to run together again -- hopefully in better weather!

Race stats:

Total for relay: 4:22:59
My leg, 5.7m: 50:25 (8:51/m pace)

Yay!!!

If you haven't run a relay before, I highly recommend it! They are lots of fun.

Happy Monday, everyone!

~ Felice

PS: New -- yummy -- giveaway over here.

38 comments:

alicia. said...

That sounds like a lot of fun! I haven't run a relay like that. I need to get to know some more runners to drag with me to races. :)

Marlene said...

Congratulations, Pink Ladies! Sounds like you had some nasty conditions to contend with and yet you are all smiling and ran GREAT races!

Diana said...

Glad you have such a great time :)

Manderz said...

I had such a great time!! You totally rocked your leg of the race!

Heather @ Side of Sneakers said...

I love relays! Glad you had fun :)

misszippy said...

Great job, especially fighting the wind (my least favorite element!). Love the pink look too.

Jocelyn said...

Fun! I really want to do a relay! Congrats

Staci Dombroski said...

Congratulations on the relay!!! What a great pace you had :-)

Darlene said...

Congrats! You did great!

Lisa said...

Wow! That wind sounds difficult. Way to push through it with a great pace! Sounds like you all had a lot of fun!

Mel -Tall Mom on the Run said...

Wow sounds AWESOME! I have never doen arelay but this post makes me want to...not in the cold and wind.. YUCK!

aron said...

sounds like sooooo much fun!!! great job :)

Jill said...

I love running relays, they are so much fun!! Nice running by your whole group!!!

Lara said...

You're totally motivating me to run a relay, I just need to get it together! It sounds like a LOT of fun. Congrats on your team's awesome time!

trifitmom said...

i am doing my first relay (since high school) this may...looking forward to it !!

Robert said...

Nice run! Relays are a lot of fun and on such a windy day as yesterday, they're a much more comfortable option than running the full marathon.

I was one of the "nutty people wearing shorts" in your photo (the one in the blue striped hat). It definitely was a little chilly out there, but better to be too cold than too hot...

Denise said...

i knew you'd have a great time with this! so glad you did!

Heather said...

Congrats! Looks like a fun time, even with the cold wind.

ajh said...

Good job in not so good weather! Relays are a lot of fun. I love the pink!!!

Emily said...

LOVE the pink ladies shot! Super cute!

J said...

Sounds like so much fun! Great job on your leg! Can't believe it was so windy Sunday! That is crazy! And I can't believe people were wearing shorts!!

Wifey said...

Sounds like fun. Never thought about running a relay before! Congrats on another great race!

Winks & Smiles,
Wifey

Tina @GottaRunNow said...

Racing with bloggy friends looks like a lot of fun!

MJ said...

Sounds like it was cold but fun!

Mel-2nd Chances said...

AWESOME!!!! I'm doing a 30k relay next month and now you have me really excited for it! Awesome job, and I just love that these were bloggers! Too cool! Great job to all of you!

joyRuN said...

I've never done a relay, but sounds like a fun way to go!

EndorphinBuzz said...

Looks like a lot of fun and at least you didn't come last ;)

lindsay said...

congrats! :) def sounds like a fun time, well minus the crazy wind of course. gonna sign up for a ragnar now?? ;)

Abby said...

Wind aside, it sounds like a great way to spend a morning!

Abby said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
runningwithsass said...

that sounds so fun! the pink is too cute. Sorry it was so cold!

Hannah said...

Great pictures! Nice to put a face with a name. :)

Sounds like all of you had a great run! Way to go!

Suzy said...

Pink Ladies...love it!! I already said it, you rocked. Loved hearing what you did while I was out and about. I honestly didn't think about how you were starting all alone because I started with the whole crowd. Take care and yes, we'll definitely run again when it is a little nicer out.

Janice {Run Far} said...

I have never run a marathon relay before. That would be fun. Running in the wind is not so much fun.

Katie said...

Awesome job! You guys have definitely inspired me to consider a marathon relay. I love the pic of you guys in pink- soo cute!

X-Country2 said...

Crappy day, but a super fun-sounding race. Way to be hardcore.

sarah (SHU) said...

just catching up . . . congrats on the relay!! and i loved your post on 'your own orange fan' :) awesome!

Quix said...

Yay! Congrats to the pink ladies! That is a pretty darn amazing time for 5.7 miles, that's pretty much my tempo I'm going to die pace, hehe. I was supposed to do a relay with a few friends, but one got hurt so we backed out since we hadn't yet signed up. It sounds like an awesome time - maybe in better weather though!

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