Saturday morning (a week ago, I'm such a slow blogger) we loaded our running stuff into an RV with friends and hit the road for Paducah, KY. It was a 5-6 hr drive for us so we left pretty early in the day allowing for us to take our time (and a few pit stops since we were hydrating well!). The ride was loads of fun. How can it not be with 5 adults, 2 teens, 2 8 yr olds and a puppy!? To entertain ourselves on the ride up my friend and I mocked the teenagers by attempting the duck face (is it duck face or kissy face??)....
We arrived safely in Paducah around 4 or 5. I get so confused when the time changes or we lose/gain an hour due to time zones. We waited on the rest of our crew to arrive (we had 2 teams of 5 and a crew of support). Anyway, race start wasn't until 8pm. We had plenty of time to nap, eat, set up camp and rest. Once everyone was there we grabbed our swag bags and hung out a while.
This race is run on a horse track. The infield is where runners set up camp.
Not long after we were set up a couple with a Semi pulled in near us. Now, if you know me and my Winey running friends you will know that we dominate some planking! We're always looking for creative places to get our #PlankADay on! Check us out....
And no one should head out to an all night endurance run without proper hydration and calf tattoos...
After planking, getting our hydration station set up, locating bathrooms and getting geared up to run we decided we should devise a race plan. My team was a team of 5 (Winey Does RUTS II). It was me, my hubby, Phil, Cait and Ted. We were not planning to be competitive but to just have a good time and run what we could in the 10 hours of the run. I'm not sure that any of has a true distance goal for the night but I knew that my coach said he would be fine with me running anything between 15-20 miles, but no more than that.
I've done relays before (hey, Ragnar!) and they're a lot of fun. I do speed work on a track. However, I had never ran miles and miles and miles around a horse track as part of a relay. I wasn't exactly sure what to expect. So, I set my goal to running 5 miles each 45 minute "leg" I was to be out on the track. I figured I could run 5 miles in that amount of time and I'd hit the goal of 15 miles but also thought maybe if I was up to it I'd go out and run some w/one of my team mates to get closer to the 20 mile goal.
At 8pm we all (both teams) decided to line up together and run one lap together. The track was a 1/2 mile around so it would be a good warmup for everyone. There were a few announcements and the National Anthem, bam we were off. However, when we rounded the last turn to the stretch and the start we were stopped. Timing issues would actually have us stopped 3 different times before the race got under way just after 9pm. So, instead of a 10 hour endurance run RUTS became a 9 hour endurance run. So much for the plan we worked out before the start. We were now just going to wing it and run what we could collectively as a team.
My first leg started right around 10pm. The goal was 5 miles in 45 minutes but since we were a bit off on time my hubby (who would run the next leg) showed up to take over the team bib a few minutes before my 45 minutes was up.
1st leg stats:
4.53 miles (9:21/9:15/8:51/9:04/4:53)
The goal was to run my legs at half marathon pace. I went out a bit fast my first leg but felt good. I chatted with friends, ate a snack, changed out of my sweat drenched clothes and napped a bit before my next leg.
2nd leg stats:
5.00 miles (9:23/9:09/9:03/9:12/8:58)
My hubby woke me from my nap just a little before 1am and my leg started around 1:30am. I felt refreshed but knew this one would be a bit more of a struggle because I only "napped" for about an hour. Overall based on splits this one looks good but I felt worn out and when my hubby was there to take over I was ready. I had a slice of pizza, changed clothes and hung out until my next leg. Again, this one was fast and I side stitched pretty weird almost the whole time.
3rd leg stats:
4.18 miles (9:47/9:41/9:35/10:56)
I was done before I started this time I think. Our legs were closer together this time around because we had one team mate only logging 10 miles so she ran twice. This was not an issue other than I was more tired than I thought and the pizza came back to bite me. I also side stitched so the last mile was a lot of walking.
Notes: I lost about a mile during the timing snaffu. It was later counted. I have the stats on my Garmin but didn't figure they were really worth sharing here since they weren't part of my actual legs.
Overall my team ran a total of 58 miles which was good enough to come in 5th overall for teams.
Ted logged more miles/ran farther than he ever has. Gotta love a distance PR.
My hubby logged 21 miles for his mileage PR.
Phil and Cait both also ran awesome too. I'd be happy to have any of these awesome people on my team again!
What I loved about RUTS:
- race director Steve is awesome. I could go into more detail but awesome sums it up.
- laid back atmosphere. I love that this was basically a run at your own pace even if you're crawling type event. No pressure!
- Food! The aide station was awesome. We were well taken care of.
- Medals- You know I love some bling.
- Tech tee- enough said!
I really enjoyed this trip with friends, the people that were at RUTS and the overall experience of such a laid back event. I hope to get back next year and log more miles!