Awesome. Incredible. Perfect. Fantastic. Beautiful. Unforgettable.
These are just some of the words that come to mind when I think about my Hood to Coast experience. I wouldn’t change a thing about how it all went.
My teammates: Lauren, Leslie, Lisa, Jolene, and Dre were such great teammates.We were always there to cheer each other on, and to share stories. Thank you for motivating me and showing so much caring and heart, and providing countless hours of smiles and laughter. You all have such positive attitudes, which I LOVE. I feel like we all clicked right away. I am so glad that I have you all as new friends! xoxo.
And Jay — we couldn’t have done it without you! Thanks for putting up with all of us, driving 200 miles, keeping track of our times, cheering us on, and helping us get whatever we needed… like lots of chocolate milk!
The running: Each of time I ran was just so much fun. I nearly exactly hit my predicted paces! It was hard to wait to be the last runner to go in my van, but cheering for them kept me busy and helped quiet my pre-race nerves
Leg #6 — 6.7 miles 52:44 (7:53/mi) starting at 5:10pm
For this run, I really just wanted to focus on having fun, not pushing it too hard, but finish strong. My awesome teammates cheered me up the one big hill I had (they are awesome!) with a power arch. Seriously, that dropped my pace a ton and really revved me up! I powered into the exchange and handed off to Kim.
At the end of this leg, my Mom was there to cheer me in to the exchange!! She had never seen me running a race before, so this was very exciting! I don’t get to see her very often since we live across the country from each other. I was so happy to give her a big hug!
Leg #18 — 5.25 miles. 44:14 (8:30/mi) starting at 3:15am
I’m not much of a stay up all night kind of girl, so I wasn’t sure what to expect with my energy level at this time of night. But I think I was just still so excited and having fun with my teammates, that the adrenaline was keeping me going. This run was 5.25 miles of gradual up hill. It was partially on a highway, and partially through a neighborhood. It was hard to decide if I should run in the road or on the sidewalk in the neighborhood. The sidewalk had lots of little juts up and down, but the road wasn’t very good either, so I kept changing it up. This leg was pretty quiet — I only saw and passed 4 people! There was a little bit of light mist happening during this leg, which I thought was kind of awesome. It was the perfect temperature for running!
Also, the start of this run was at a high school, where they had a pancake breakfast as a fundraiser. Jolene, Lauren and Leslie got a breakfast. I had to make myself stay outside because the smell of the breakfast at that moment was so incredibly tempting, but I knew there would be some bad things happening to my GI system if I ate any of that stuff right before running. Luckily for me, I didn’t have any issues during my middle of the night run!
Leg #30 –5.35 miles. 42:00 (7:52/mi) starting at 12:45pm
This was probably my favorite run of the relay as far as scenery — I was running through winding back country roads surrounded by big beautiful trees. It was getting cooler as we neared the ocean, but the sun was shining. Gorgeous!
My legs were starting to feel the accumulating mileage, but I was so excited to say that I finished running my first relay and Hood to Coast! I wanted to really put out there everything I had left! I expected this run to be almost entirely downhill, with some of it being pretty steep. While this was true, it also had many short and steep uphill sections, gradual climbs, and sharp banked curves that made it a fairly difficult run. My team stopped one more time to give me a power arch as I was flying during one of the downhills. I was seriously just so happy! Thanks again for keeping me going ladies!
Finish line fun: After I finished running, we drove to Seaside to await van 2! When they arrived around 6pm, we all got to walk through the finish line together! We celebrated our accomplishments with drinks and ice cream along with enjoying the post-race concert and fireworks. Perfect ending to an amazing relay experience.
The support: None of this would have been possible without Nuun and its great employees. Everyone was so welcoming and positive, making us all feel at home and part of the family. Thanks for making everything run so smoothly, and for providing all of us with the experience of a lifetime. I am so glad to be a part of your team. I love how supportive you are of endurance athletes of every level.
Big thanks also to all the other companies who helped keep us moving including Oiselle, Naawk, Tigertail, Endorphin Warrior, Sparkle Athletic, Amphipod, and Swiftwick. Check them out — some seriously awesome products!
The incredible women I met on this trip: (Too many to name, but you can find a list of everyone from Lindsay, here) Thank you for the motivation you provided, and the brief chance to get to know you for real rather than just what we see on your blog. Thank you for showing me how unbelievably supportive the running community is, and for giving me so many memories. For showing me that hard work and dedication can lead to something magical when combined with happiness and laughter. For reminding me how much fun it is to race your heart out and love what you are doing. I am so glad to have met many of you and I can’t wait until we can have a reunion!
What has been one of your most favorite adventures?