August 19, 2017

My Personal RAGNAR

D2R2 was intended to mark the end of my ’12 race calendar; however, early in July a friend (and former client) asked me to participate in this year’s Coloardo RAGNAR relay.  Knowing that if one tend to says “no” all the time that one ends up friendless and alone, I agreed.  Shortly after saying “yes” to this event, I discovered that RAGNAR (at least CO’s version) had been surrounded by a bit of controversy, see here for more details on that.  I am not big on controversy and, upon at least my first look at the issues surrounding this event, I lost most of my enthusiasm for participating.  However, I had said yes, needed to reconnect with a friend that I had let slip away, and therefore I continued to train for my part in this multi-stage relay.  Once I returned from D2R2 I really felt the gravity of rather spontaneously adding yet another event to my race calendar—I was tired of the long  hours of training and time spent away from my family and other pursuits.  Bottom line: I made the decision to pull out of RAGNAR.  As I told “Captain Dan” (the extremely well organized leader of “Team Six Degrees”) when I asked him to dip into the list of alternates (there were several other eager runners looking to give RAGNAR a go), “I have never backed out of a race obligation, nor have I ever quit any race that I have ever started …I have no intention of leaving this team in a bind!?  However, if you have another capable runner ready to go, I would be inclined to do so [meaning, let another runner take my spot].  Another runner took my spot and I was set “free” … the race/training year was over (as planned).  Whew …

But was it?  Look, I like to finish what I start and even thought I was officially out of ’12 RAGAR, I had trained up and therefore decided to run my own multi-stage event.  Because other plans had now occupied the official RAGNAR weekend, I started my event on September 6th at 1:00 pm.—”My Personal RAGANR” would therefore end on Friday the 7th at 1:00 p.m.  I had been assigned the following legs by the Six Degrees team: Leg 12, 2.9 miles – EASY, Leg 24, 4.0 miles – MODERATE, and the final leg, Leg 36 – VERY HARD [these are RAGNAR’s assignments, not mine)—the fact that I was assigned the final leg resulted in my wife labeling me the Sanya Richards-Ross of the Six Degrees team.  Each of the legs shared the following net elevation changes, -142 ft., -46 ft, and +611 ft—I have ready access to these elevation profiles right out my front door.

 

So, that’s what I did.  Three legs, spaced out over 24-hours … all the excitement of running a multi-stage event without the need to ride around in a van for 24 hours and miss some additional time away from my wife and small children—I undoubtedly missed the opportunity to enjoy some fantastic running, early-fall Colorado splendor, and a chance to make lasting memories with a friend and 10 other motivated runners.  Look, this post is not about signing up and pulling out of race events and commitments (I DO NOT recommend either); however, it is about not letting logistical details stand in the way of your training and racing goals—you can find a way to run your race on your own terms (the only down side is that chances are that won’t get another cotton [I suppose these days, a “technical” garment] T-shirt to store unworn in your closet)!  When plans change, extenuating circumstances arise, things “come up” … go run your own race!

I received the post-race report from my friend Scott, with Team Six Degrees and, as I suspected, they did just fine without me:  winning the “Submasters Men Regular” division and finishing 12th overall (out of 164 teams) with a time of 26:40:12.8 (that’s a 8:31/mile pace over the 200+ miles–nice job).

Want more information on RAGNAR?  Check out the “RAG-mag” from this year’s race, you can take a look here.