running relay race

Because You Can’t Do Epic Alone

After crossing the finish line as a team, we were herded through a maze to pick up our medals and have our pictures taken. Once that was over with, Michael found us and he took some group photos. We all went to get some food down by the beer garden. I did not care what I ate, as long as it wasn’t Gatorade and bagels.

I got a cheeseburger and a diet coke. It was like $10 for the two items and the cheeseburger was awful. But after sitting in a van for two days eating GU and Gatorade, I’d eat anything.

I devoured the nasty burger in 1 minute I think.

I went to the souvenir tent and bought a $20 hat. I wanted another souvenir and in my delirium, I’d buy anything at that point. 🙂

Our team then went back to the van so I could transfer all my stuff into Michael’s car. We said our goodbyes and I collapsed in Michael’s car. I was tired but excited to tell him–my biggest supporter–all the gory details. He told me he wasn’t able to get a picture of me crossing the finish line and my heart fell. Then he handed me his iPhone and played the VIDEO he took. I posted it previously and it was amazing! Watching us cross the finish line together made me cry. I was so proud of my accomplishment and how hard I had trained.

We sat in Seaside traffic for awhile trying to get out of town. I immediately removed my contact lenses and threw them away. They’d hurt so bad. Once we got to Highway 26, the traffic was smooth sailing. Michael stopped at a Carl’s Jr to get dinner for himself. I was starving AGAIN. I’d eaten less than 2 hours ago but I was so hungry and tired I couldn’t think straight. I got a burrito at Carl’s Jr.

I ate about 3/4 of the burrito and threw the rest away. We finally got home and Michael helped me get undressed. I was having difficulties getting my socks and shoes off. I took the best shower of my life, took some Advil and muscle relaxers and crawled into bed. I was emotional, exhausted, happy, distraught and in incredible pain. I could barely move my legs.

Michael got an ice pack for my ankle. I don’t remember falling asleep. I don’t remember sleeping. I don’t remember waking up. But I slept for 14 hours or so and then got out of bed. Michael made me Mac n’ Cheese for lunch. I wanted a salad too–something I’d been fantasizing about in the Van for 36 hours!

My body feels deprived of food and nutrients. I tried to take in a lot of calories whenever I could. I drank chocolate milk, ate GUs, bananas, protein bars, fruit snacks, Chomps, water, Gatorade, Gatorade Recovery drinks, Powerbar Gels, bagels with peanut butter, bagels with cream cheese, bagels with cream cheese and ham slices. And lots and lots of Advil.

Every where I turned this weekend I heard people talking about how “Epic” Hood to Coast is.

Hood to Coast is definitely Epic.

I had no idea just how Epic it was until I experienced it myself.

Total Miles: 197

Total Team Members: 12

Total Miles I ran: 16.52

Total Time I ran: About 3 hours

Total Time my Team Ran: 31 hours and some change

Total Calorie Burned: 1,955

And you cannot do Epic Alone. I had my team. My teammates who ran the really hard sections of Hood to Coast and did it with a smile. The Volunteers who encouraged the runners to keep going. The supportive bystanders who cheered. The other runners who said “Good job” as they passed me. 🙂 My parents who helped with the financial costs in entering this crazy race. The friends who were supportive and enthusiastic about me doing this. My friend Rachel that drove from Seattle to volunteer!

And most of all: Michael! He helped me in ways I cannot even express. Emotional support, helping me plan for this, not complaining about me training for a year. Michael was there at the finish line when I needed him to, and he drove me home from the beach. He took video of a moment that I will relive the rest of my life and think of happily. He didn’t get upset when I had my total breakdown from exhaustion. He is the best!

You do Hood to Coast with a team because

You Can’t Do Epic Alone.

Crossing the Finish Line

I never thought I would be doing something like this.

I never thought I’d lose the weight.

I never thought I’d be “skinny.”

I never thought I would become a Runner.

I never thought I COULD run a race like Hood To Coast.

Remember how I said I was an emotional wreck after Leg 24? That I was sad and lonely and feeling overwhelmed with my emotions? Those were some of the thoughts I had been having. And those were the thoughts I had while I was running my last Leg–Leg 36.

I left off my story with reaching the Boardwalk at Seaside. One mile left. I could see the tips of the tents on the beach ahead of me. I knew the finish was close. I wasn’t going to cry. I was going to smile and be happy when I crossed that damn finish line!

I wasn’t just overwhelmed with negative emotions–I was MORE overwhelmed with the positive emotions! The: “I DID IT!” and “I RAN HOOD TO COAST!” I was sooo proud that I’d come as far as I had! And I did NOT WALK!

I kept running down the boardwalk, the tents getting bigger and closer. Other people who’d already crossed the finish line were telling me “Good job” and “Keep going, you’re almost there!” I felt so determined! Sort of like that scene in a horror movie where the heroine of the story (bloodied and crippled) drags her body across the floor to shoot the psycho killer. I’m freakin’ DOING this!

I got to the finish area. My feet hit the sand and the last few feet I was limping, stumbling, dragging myself across the sand to the staging area. My team number was announced and the rest of my team appeared next to me. The loudspeakers blared our team name ALL 12 of us CROSSED THE FINISH LINE together!

Right before I was crossing the Finish Line, I saw Michael immediately! My heart soared! He made it! He was here at the finish line!!! I was so happy! Tired, sore, in pain, but HAPPY!

Leg 36 Stats:

Time: 59:48

Distance: 5.23 miles

Pace: 11’43

Calories Burned: 622

I FINISHED HOOD TO COAST WITHOUT WALKING AT ALL!

Our Rank: #927

Pull It Together Team #210

Total team Time: 31:32:02