do you remember back when i was a running newbie, i volunteered with sparkle athletic to work a shift at the so cal ragnar race? i still remember how much fun all of the teams seemed to be having, and i even received one of the medals from the race for my volunteer work. i don't keep it with the other medals i actually earned from running, but i've looked at it now and then over the last few years. being part of a ragnar team was definitely on my running bucket list.
and then one of my cousins invited me to join her team for the vegas relay. it starts at the las vegas ski and snowboard resort (i know - i didn't know such a thing existed either) and ends at the red rock resort and casino, covering a course that stretches for roughly 200 miles. there are a dozen runners on the team, you each run three legs and spend a whole lot of time together in a van for the duration of the race. it starts early friday morning, goes overnight and ends saturday afternoon. yikes, right? but i really wanted to do it at least once, and so i committed to the team, paid my registration and then tried to forget about it for the last few months.
well, guess what? by the time you read this, i'll be in vegas getting ready to receive the slap bracelet and start my first leg. i'm runner #9 on the team, with a 5.1 mile moderate leg first that according to the pace calculator will be somewhere around 1:30 in the afternoon. then my second leg is a moderate 6.1 miles that i'll start at approximately 11:00 that night, and my last one is an easy 3.5 miles skirting the edge of the vegas strip.
every runner and anyone who will be anywhere along the course between the hours of 3:45pm on friday to 6:45am the next morning is required to wear a reflective safety vest, a headlamp and a tail light. i'll be looking like this:
only a little less energetic and probably a lot more disheveled and sweaty. ha! and check this out:
YESSSSS. they're light-up shoelaces! i'm kind of ridiculously excited for them. i'm putting them on these fabulous nikes from their "flash" line, which is super reflective and created for running in the dark:
packing for a ragnar race is...exhausting. i consulted several blog posts that my cousin forwarded, plus the ragnar website, and began to assemble my outfit packets for each leg. leg #1, with an option for long or short sleeves because a girl likes to have options:
here's my ensemble for the nighttime leg.
and then of course i have to rep team superhero at least once:
each outfit has been folded and carefully packed in a large ziploc bag labeled with the leg number.
here's the assortment of race fuel i gathered. i won't go through all of it, but again - options.
here's a few of the toiletries i'm bringing on the van. the shampoo and conditioner will stay at the hotel though, because ain't nobody got time for a roadside shower.
because i'm anticipating trying to get at least a little sleep after that second leg, i went off in search of a travel/compact/packable pillow and blanket to take. i hit all sorts of stores before i finally found what i was looking for at sport chalet - but ended up leaving empty-handed. because with price tags of $24 for the pillow and another $30 for the blanket...well, i'll make do with stuff i already have, thank you very much. hopefully i won't come to regret being a tightwad later on.
look at the plethora of crap i packed in my suitcase - not including chargers for various electronics, shoes and regular clothes for pre- and post-race. sheesh.
now that i'm all packed and ready to go, i'm finally done being anxious and scared half to death, and moving on to being excited for this business. everyone i know who's done a ragnar has absolutely adored it, and so i'm really looking forward to seeing what it's all about. who knows - maybe it'll become my new obsession. as if i don't already have enough of those.
wish me luck!