Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Ragnar Relay (Wasatch Back) 2010

Well I did it. I finished another Ragnar Relay! After last year, I seriously considered not doing it again. Between the lack of sleep and the irritated stomach, I wasn’t sure I could …stomach…another go-around. BUT, I am SO glad I did. This year was a lot less stressful for me. For some reason, I was more nervous about each run, but my body was able to remain stable and I wasn’t reaching for the Imodium every five minutes.
Spencer, Kati, Lisa, Bryan, Stein, Ashleigh (aka Van 2)
 Ashleigh is 14 weeks pregnant and did AWESOME!
Bryan was amazing! He runs so fast!
 Spencer cracks me up. This picture makes me laugh every time.
 Lis was such a good team captain, and she rocked the Ragnar!
 The best exchange (19)! The volunteers were awesome!
(This next part is mostly record keeping so I can remember everything, but it does include the story of the fall and pictures!…so maybe it’s a little interesting).

Our start time was 10:30am this year, which was about an hour and a half later than last year, and therefore, van 2 didn’t start running until about 5:30pm. 
I was Runner 11. Full of hills. Supposedly easier than the two “Ragnar Hill Runners”, which I was last year. You reach the highest point of the entire relay.  All of these things didn’t sound so bad. I was definitely up for something somewhat challenging, but wasn’t against having it easier than last year. Well…it wasn’t easier than last year. Whoever said Runner 11 is easier than Runner 9…lied.
Anyways, my first run (7:30pm) was 3.8 miles and deemed very hard by the running manual. This little dozy was 2.7 miles straight up to Snow Basin, and then another mile straight down. I thrive on downhill, and I couldn’t wait until the last mile for the downhill…the only problem was, I still had miles of pure uphill to accomplish first. I won’t lie; I was mentally defeated by that mountain the moment I set foot on it. I had told myself that I wasn’t an uphill runner, and that my training runs uphill were less than adequate. I could have done a lot better, but I let the hill get the best of me. My last mile (downhill) was accomplished in 6 minutes and 32 seconds, which I’m pretty sure was because I was so upset with my performance on the first two miles. I finished in 38 minutes. I was not impressed with the way this relay was starting…
I look excited, but trust me, I was freaking out.

 Aw, the mist.

Not excited with my time...
Second Run: 5.5 miles around Rockport, considered moderate. The second run was the one I thought the least about. do you gage, moderate? I choose to think Moderate meant Easy. And…for the most part, I was right. This run, at the gorgeous time of 6:30am, was windy, and chilly. I was bound to make this run more successful than my last. I was on a team. This wasn’t just my time, this was theirs too. And so I started, and so did the side ache. I ran the full 5.5 with a chilly side ache, but I did it with a smile on my face. 50 minutes isn’t an amazing time, but I would take it.
 This is what you look like when you haven't slept all night after running and sitting in a car for hours.
Third Run (the fall): When runner 8 was finishing up their 3rd run, our team captain received a text message saying “Due to an unforeseen obstruction, runner 11 will have 1.5 miles added to their last run.” I had already committed us to being finished with the whole thing at 6:30pm, and that was being ambitious; therefore, the news that my 5.4 very hard mile run was now going to be 6.9, had me less than thrilled. As I was preparing for the run, I just kept repeating that I didn’t like to head out for a timed run, when I didn’t know what terrain I was about to encounter. 
The first 2.8 miles of the run were the same as expected. I finished the top of “Ragnar” (Guardsman’s Pass), and then ran down the backside. I passed eight people in the first 2.8 miles and was feeling pretty good about myself. Then, I reach a spot where my team has pulled over to give me water and one of my teammates says “Kati, this is the last time we’ll see you before the end of the run. Can I give you this water?” I decline because quite frankly, I can’t run with a water bottle in my hands (and neither could anyone else, given that I found about five water bottles on the trail as I was running). Anyways, there was a volunteer sitting at the opening of this trail, which was about 2 ½ feet wide, and she mentioned that I would be trail running for 3.5 miles. Okay, and off I went. I was somewhat cautious in the trail because how embarrassing would it be if I fell and had to show up at the finish line all dirty and bloody (maybe that was my signal to the universe to show me or something). After passing one more person, and running two more miles (incline and decline), I come out onto this dirt/gravel road that is about a 6% decline. At this point, I am running right behind a girl that is about 15, who is so concerned that I was going to pass her that I held off until she started to walk…and then I passed her. The gravel road went for about a half a mile and I could see the opening to the next trail run, along with a water station to the left.
The girl I had just passed stopped to get water and the volunteer at the water station proceeds to try and get my attention. I can see her out of my peripheral vision, put my hand up and say (probably more like yell) No thank you. She keeps waving her hand with the water and starts coming closer. By then, I start to take out my headphones to hear her and I look over.  BAM! I am sliding down this dirty loose gravel road. Panicked, I hurry and get up; just in time for two volunteers to say, “Are you okay? You need to go find one of the biker volunteers to get you some help.” First thought: and what is this biker going to do? Put me on his handle bars and ride me to the finish? I don’t think so. While hyperventilating I say “No, No, No, I have to finish. I have to finish. I told them I would do it in under an hour.” And off I went. Two people passed me as I entered the trail, and I followed the girl with the pink camo for the next 1.7 miles to the finish. I don’t remember much of that run, and in all honesty, I have no idea how I made it. But I finished…in exactly an hour (for the record, the run actually ended up being 7 miles). 
 So ready to finish.
Once I crossed the finish line, the adrenaline wore off, and I realized that I was pretty beat up…so much for not coming across the finish line dirty and bloody. Immediately, I ask for an Aid Station. If you know me well, you know I don’t ask for help. I knew this wasn’t something I could deal with myself, at that moment. One of the finish line volunteers states “No Aid Station here, you have to go to the Canyons.” Great, thanks. Thankfully, Lisa is prepared and has a nice first aid kit in the car. I might have looked like a burn patient, but she cleaned off the wounds and wrapped me up, so I could be momentarily okay. Thanks Lis! hands don't look so good. (notice the elbow)
 Look how pale I good.
The Finish: We make it to the Canyons, find what is left of our van 1, take a few pictures, and wait for Runner 12 (Spencer) to cross the finish line. As Spencer approaches, we all gather and run to the finish line together…at 6:37pm. Even with all of our mishaps, we still did it. I was so excited and all I could think about was getting down the gondola, finding Mr. Army and going home.
 Hamburger hands, bruised hip and calf and ripped pants :(
Most of the team at the finish line.
Go Spencer!! 
Mr. Army was so gracious to really clean out the wounds, and re-wrap so I didn’t look so much like a 2 year old that decided to place both hands on the stove. Sadly, I hadn’t eaten in too many hours, and my body freaked out, and I almost passed out.  Don’t worry, I’m okay.
All is well today, and I can’t wait for next year!!

 Calf bruise and hand cuts as of today...sorry, not showing the hip.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Baby Yoda and Blog Catch-up

I've been a little M.I.A. in the blog world because, well, I'm boring and there isn't a ton going on that is worth blogging about, except for Ragnar training. Less than 2 weeks!? eek.

Here are some pictures of baby Yoda (Mr. Army's new name for JW):

Auntie, I'm really excited about your new cooking utensils.
Pure enjoyment.
He even slept while I mopped the floor.

What a cute kid. 

Project Organization...

So, I have this is called "the constant need to have a project".

While Mr. Army was gone for drill last week, I was bound and determined to turn the spare room's closet from the place to put all of our junk, to the place that stores all of our junk in an organized way.

Let's be honest, I was too embarrassed to take before pictures, but here is what we have so far:

 I guess I like green.

Trust looks a lot better. And don't judge me that my food storage (ish) and Mr. Army's closet happen to be the same place. And yes, the top shelf is lined with 6 protein powder containers. I need flavor options. (that is a whole other "problem")
 I was so proud of my closet success, and then Mr. Army came home and this is what happened to the room. Thanks a lot, Army and all of your necessary junk. :)

Memorial Day Backpacking...

Every year since we started dating, I drive Mr. Army crazy during the Spring and Summer (and sometimes even Fall) to go camping. And since Mr. Army FINALLY got a backpacking sleeping bag, I was really itching to get the backpacking season going full force.

Therefore, for Memorial Day we decided to do an over-night hike just around Bountiful because Mr. Army wasn't sure if he would have to go to an Army training or not. So, we drive up to Bountiful Blvd and just started looking for canyons (way to be prepared, we know.) Anyways, about a mile away from my house, we found Holbrook Canyon. It was a great hike, although we had to do a lot of bush whacking (have you ever seen Mantracker? That's how I felt, most of the hike).

Here are the pictures I know that is all you care about :) (click on to enlarge)

About a half mile into the hike...I think I was making fun of him, and thus the face.
 I love nature. If you knew me when I was younger, you would know how weird that is to hear (see) me say that.
 Mr. Army bought the most amazing water filter. The water was so good!
 Me waiting for Mr. Army to filter our water...also, I was trying to get documentation that I was actually on this hike.

 I have no idea what he is doing.
 We were a little dirty...
 I was collecting wood for the fire, and Mr. Army decided to take over the camera.
 My battle wound...for the record, I am still recovering from this one.
 View from where we decided to camp. Love it!

I'm a mess, but it is still a pretty cute picture.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

thoughts of the day...

  • it's been a short work week, and i still feel like it should be friday...
  • a dear friend is going through some unthinkable sadness right now, and i can't stop thinking that nothing i say will help.
  • i am having a bittersweet feeling about summer. i love love LOVE the weather, but i don't really feel like spending another summer without bbh.
  • speaking of bbh, deployment and i are having a tug-o-war, and i'm pretty sure i'm about to lose.
  • ragnar is in two weeks from tomorrow. makes me a little nervous.
  • i hope court mcgee wins the ultimate fighter this season.
  • i am itching to finish season one of true blood, so i can move on to season two.
  • i need to take some classes. photography and cooking, at least.
  • i want to be crafty, but have no idea where to begin
  • my pool opened this week, and i'm supposed to help monitor chemical levels. i know nothing about pools
  • i turn 24 in about 3 weeks. my life is nothing like i planned it would be at 24
  • i love camping, and backpacking...even when i come home and my legs look like my boyfriend beat me (or we got a cat that hates me)
  • i feel a strong urge to bake. if you live in the nsl/bountiful area, or feel like taking a trip up there, call me, guaranteed i'll have some treats for you
  • i'm going to vegas for the 4th of july, and can't wait. it is kind of my birthday present to myself...and kind of mr army's present to me, though i'm not sure he realizes that yet :)
  • my house is a mess, and i feel that every time i clean it, it gets messy very shortly there after. i thought that only happened when you had kids?
  • most of the people i work with live in virginia. i think it would be much easier if i could just work from home
  • i need a tan
  • i could really go for a hamburger/fries and some good fry sauce. delightful.
  • grocery shopping is a MUST tonight or tomorrow. i am foodless.
  • i think i'm going to take up boxing and/or cross fit. i like to mix it up.
  • confession: it is a constant battle to be content with where i am in life. i'm working on it.
  • my new favorite treat = protein shake root bear floats. don't knock it til you try it
  • i think i should be a stay at home mom. oh wait, i guess i need to be a mom first, dang.
  • my corner cubicle of death alternates blowing warm and frigid air. i spend half of the day taking on and off my sweater.
  • running is my favorite pass time. love it.
P.S. I have our memorial weekend backpacking trip to post soon, promise.