You’re probably getting bored of Ragnar recaps by now, but don’t worry! This is my third, and final, recap from the three legs I ran during the DC Ragnar Relay on September 12-13. If you missed the recap of my second leg, you can find that HERE.
My final leg was leg 33, a quick 2.2 miles through Arlington, VA. The route took me through neighborhoods and onto the Custis Trail.
It was raining during this run, but it wasn’t cold or anything so I didn’t mind. Running in the rain is fun! Debbie rocked her final leg and then handed off to me right around 12:50 PM. It had been estimated that I would run my final leg around 1:45 PM, so you can see how awesome everyone was running.
I had a sweet downhill during the first part of my leg, and I let it rip. Then I hit some uphills getting onto the Custis Trail and running along the trail, which really worked me. I was definitely feeling the fatigue from the weekend, both from running and from lack of sleep. My right shin was also starting to be pretty bothersome.
Despite this being my shortest leg, it had the most turns. There had been some rumors about signs missing or being moved along the course, so I opted to carry a map of my leg folded up in my water bottle pouch. Luckily all the markers were there, and I never had any issues. Had one of them been missing, it would have been very easy to miss one of the turns or veer the wrong way at one of the many forks along this leg.
Running on the Custis Trail was a lot like running on the Huckleberry. I wasn’t quite prepared for the hills, as the leg looks pretty mild on my route map. But it was the last one, so I didn’t back down.
I arrived at exchange 33 to find my team wasn’t there. I only waited about 10 seconds when Chuck came running up to take the slap band and take off for his final leg. I finished with an average pace of 9:19/mile. Just like that my Ragnar running was done.
Ragnar Relay was a great experience. It’s definitely something I would consider doing again. although I think next time I would give one of the Ragnar trails a try. I was amazed at how well-organized the entire event was. The Ragnar folks really know what they’re doing and they put on a great show. When you think of the magnitude of the logistics that must go into planning something like this, with passing through so many towns and localities, it’s a wonder they’re able to put these things on.
After Ragnar my legs were very sore – especially my quads and calves. I think it was a combination of running and being squished into a van for 30 hours. A 15 passenger van is spacious, but it’s still a van! I was exhausted after the relay, too, and it probably took me 2-3 days before I finally felt rested and back to my usual self. It’s a tough thing to throw into the midst of marathon training, but I’m really glad I decided to do it!