Sunday, August 28, 2011

Epic Relay and Memories of a Lifetime!

I admit it.  I was a little sick of hearing about Hood To Coast before this weekend.  Even though I was signed up and on a team, I just wasn't feeling the same excitement and HTC mojo that some were feeling.  My luke warm attitude about the whole thing probably had to do with a lot of things:

  • I had never met any of the people we'd be on a team with
  • Had total blog burn out and was feeling uninspired about many things in life.
  • Was having a hard time getting excited about the weekend until I got through the week with my kids, packed everything up and had everything arranged for where the kids would be when we were gone.  Sometimes it is tricky relaxing and really enjoying something until everything is checked off and we are actually in the moment.  
Now that it is over and we are enjoying a quiet Sunday afternoon, I find myself having similar feelings to that of my thirteen year old "just got back from church camp" self.  My husband and I have both been saying that we feel a little sad to be done and say goodbye to our new friends.  After sharing a powerful and energizing experience in such close quarters with a group of people over so many hours, you kind of find yourself "bonded" at the end of it all.  Or that's how we feel with this group.  

For those that you don't know about Hood To Coast, here is a brief explanation:
  • 1 team = 2 vans.  12 people.  Six people in each van. 3 legs each.
  • 2 days. 24 plus hours.
  • 200 miles from Mt. Hood to Seaside, Oregon (Oregon coast).
  • Over the course of the race we are running, cheering each other on, keeping in contact with the other van, finding short periods of time to sleep in between legs and pass off to the other vans, sharing a common love: Running, learning about each other's life, laughing, meeting new people, drinking beer (if you so choose :)  We did.), and being part of an epic experience! 
This was my third time to do Hood To Coast and my favorite so far!  My husband and I got to be in a van together and this was part of what made it so fun for us.  We made some great memories that I will never forget.  So fun to be able to be US together and take off our parent hats for a weekend.  Reminded me all over again about how much I love him!  We were also lucky enough to get on a great team of people and have an amazing family that took all three of our kids for two nights!

Some of my favorite parts of this year's HTC:
  • Meeting new friends
  • Meeting up with so many awesome ladies from the Nuun teams!
  • Running some really strong miles and having FUN doing it!!
  • Having my husband/best friend on my team and in my van
  • Sleeping in the shade of a tree, under a blue sky with a light breeze with Waylon while we waited for our third leg.  And so many other runners doing the same peaceful!  
  • Seeing so many people from all over come together for this goal and for the love of running
  • Many fun people to look at...costumes, van decorations, etc.  
  • Drinking beer on the beach 
  • Knowing so many other runners from all over...I truly feel like I am part of an Oregon running community
  • Cheering on our teammates
  • Having a van full of people that are so positive and easy going.  And smart! 
Oh, and the running part of it:
  • I was leg 10.  
  • My total mileage over the course of the three legs was 15ish miles.
  • My original goal was to just have fun and run whatever I felt like.  Then I changed it to making it a good tempo workout. 
  • Leg 1 was just over 5 miles with a 7:10 avg mile pace
  • Leg 2 was almost 7 miles @ 7:07 avg.
  • Leg 3: 3.51 miles @ 7:05 avg.
  • Passing people was fun!  In the HTC lingo we call it "roadkill".  It is all in fun and I'm pretty sure that most people don't take offense to being called roadkill.  Even if you say it to say it to them on the course (which I never did) is part of the spirit and friendly competition.  I didn't count them out loud and I almost always said good job when I passed.  Once I yelled at Waylon and said "yeah, roadkill!" as he was passing someone.  I think my teammate thought this was mean but I meant it all in fun.  I hope the guy took it that way.  I would have.  
  • My second leg had about two miles of pretty big hills but then the rest at a good downhill.  This meant running the last miles at sub 7.  And getting 17 roadkill in one leg left me feeling like I'd played an awesome video game.  My husband didn't like this (playfully) since it beat his roadkill average.  Poor baby.  
  • The roadkill count and having my Garmin to see my pace really helped make each leg so much fun!
  • My husband passed off to me and we were sharing a Garmin so this was tricky.  

Van 2 ready to go!

Meeting up with some girls from the Nuun team!  Harmony, Me, Susan?, Marjorie, Tonia 

Waylon getting his Nuun Tattoo from TMB from Racing With Babes!

My awesome teammate, Heather!  Love this girl!

Sporting our Nuun Love!

More Nuun girls!  Loving meeting up with so many bloggers!

Jess is just as awesome in person as on her blog!

Lots of people in costume!

Waylon after leg one and a shower his orange  Zensah socks.

I bet this guy had lots of chaffing

Love this man!

Fueling for leg 3

Relaxing before leg 3

So much blogger love!

These girls were so fun!

TMB was loving this guy's orange socks!

Complete strangers. So nice to let me get a photo.  

Have you ever been on a relay like this before?  Do you want to?



  1. Looks like you guys had a lot of fun! I'm sad that we had such a late start time, we didn't get to meet up with anyone and basically ran all our legs alone. Great job on all the roadkills!!

  2. O Amanda, it looks like you had an amazing time and I am so glad! I hope you are feeling refreshed. I am hoping to do it next year with work, we will see. They have a team every year and never even dreamed of it but now watching everyone, I am thinking I just might want to :)

  3. That looks so fun! I would love to do a relay. We have Reach the Beach here in NH! Love that you had so much fun!!!

  4. This was such an epic race, I'm afraid no other race will match it. I am SO glad I finally got to meet you. You and the hubs are a blast!

  5. I'm so glad you had a great time! I run a 100 mile relay with 5 co-workers each May. We do the 'Keys 100' that runs from Key Largo to Key West. It's sooo much fun! I love my team and they have become some of my best friends. Hood to Coast is on our bucket list! Although we would need to recruit another 6 runners I guess.

  6. I have never done a relay like that and yes I want to so bad! Looks like you guys had a great time.

  7. I've done the Texas Independence Relay twice-yes, Texas has it's own Independence day!

    Lots of good memories and friends made along the way-with a little running along the way.

    Those pics are too fun! Looks like an awesome experience.

  8. The smiles in every single photo say it all - it was a blast! I've done a 500k relay twice and have signed up to do it all over again this year. It's so much fun!

  9. Great pics! It looks like you had a great time and great weather too!

  10. You got some great stories and some great pics... and ran some FAST legs on your fast legs :)

    So very glad I got to see you!

  11. What a fun time! It looks like such a big party. One year I think I'll do this one :)

    Loved reading about the Road Kill and knowing you beat Waylon (playfully)!!

    You need another garmin! Ha! Two marathoners with one garmin must be tricky. :))

  12. AWESOME! Thanks for posting the pix and the report!!

  13. AHHHHH I LOVE THIS!!! 17 roadkill in one are my hero!! That is so awesome that you got to do it with your hubby and also form so many amazing friendships!! Um, can we do it together one year?!?!

  14. It was great to meet you and your husband.. You were fantastic. GREAT GREAT effort on those legs, truly stellar time.. Hope to see you again someday :)

  15. much fun!!!! I am not gonna lie...I'm so sad I didn't get to do it but next year FOR SURE!!!!!! so glad you had fun! and awesome paces girl!! when are we gonna meet up for a run? xxx

  16. It looks like you had a blast! so cool that you and the hubs got to do it together like that. And love the beer fueling! Great job out there!

  17. Man, looks like you had such a great time!!!

    Running over 15 miles and under 7:10 in that period of time is REALLY good girl!!!! I have a feeling some people are super happy you were on their team!!! Congrats to you AND Waylon!!!

    Love all the pictures. Fun to see them all on FB!!!

  18. Looks like it was worth every minute. I can't imagine not having my sweetie next to me. What an experience to share with your hubby. Wow!

    Congrats on reawakening your mojo. I can feel your excitement through the blog :)

  19. I've got a relay on my mind for next year! Looks like a blast, congrats on such a fab meetup and race!

  20. Sounds like a blast!! I saw one of your chafing guy's friends out at leg 8 in a red bikini and tassles :D

  21. That's so cool that you and Jess got to meet!! I love each of your blogs!!!

  22. It was great meeting you, Amanda! I hope to be included on your coed team next year ;-)

    Fun times!

  23. Man it looks like you guys had a blast! Relay's are always so much fun. I am running Napa Valley Ragnar and have been having some regrets (time off work/cost/travel) but your post reminded me of how much fun it is.

    Love all of the pictures!!

  24. First, I have to say I LOVE those killer Nike Tempo Shorts - love love love them. But you do look out of place amongst those skirt-wearing Nuun chicks. Bahahah...yeah, we both love those shirts - not! :)

    Second, I am so stoked you had such a wonderful time. I do think the Nuun thing was overkill and I think you played your HTC part well, just a few thought prior was great :).

    Your story laying out and watching the stars brough back memories when I did my relay a couple weeks ago and had my sleeping bag out by this river and watched the moon rise and soon, an amazing meteor shower - so cool. We call those we pass "roadkill" also and the guy will yell "Chicked one" if they pass a girl. Haha.

    You had an excellent pace going, wow-o-wow, speedy!! Hahah, love the beer, relay is complete without a few beers!

    I hope this race was the little boost to your pre-race doldrums post-Colorado - you are AWESOME!!


  25. I've never done a relay, but 2 hours ago I signed up for my first! I'm doing a marathon relay with my best friend in Walt Disney World. So not as huge as HTC, but a relay nonetheless. I'd love to do HTC some day, but first I'd have to find a sympathetic team to take me on .... and practice A LOT! Sure sounds like fun. Congrats!

  26. I have only heard awesome things about the HTC relay! I'm so jealous that you and your husband got to do it!

  27. so amazing, amanda! i love the recap. you do such a great job of describing the experience from little logistical details all the way to the deeper emotional aspects. i love reading about it! and great job running those legs! Wooo!!!

  28. how fun amanda!! nice road kills and pace! I so want to run it someday! what a blast.

  29. I'm so glad I got to meet you! You are just as sweet in person as you are on your blog. You and hubby are adorable! Glad you had such an amazing time too. Crazy how a race can leave people so inspired!

  30. SO blessed to have met you and your air humping (hilarious) husband. :)

  31. I didn't know you did HTC! It looks like so much fun. I hope to do it some day. Or at least some sort of relay. But the mountains and oceans call to me!

  32. What an amazing time!! I have a few friends who ran it..I had the opportunity TWICE to go and didn't. Maybe next year!!! Glad you got to go with your hubby! That would be so much fun!

  33. So many bloggers i follow did this race! Looks like you had a blast, and i love your new look fierce!

  34. What a great experience! It looks like a blast. So glad you and Waylan got to spend such FUN time together. :)

    Around here is the River to River Relay. Not sure how long it is, but my tri club always sends a couple teams. I'd love to go next year. Also, I'm trying to convince my friend to organize a relay across the length of the Katy Trail (which spans Missouri) as part of his 100+ project.

  35. Wow, you are a speedster! I haven't been running long enough to have had the chance to do one yet, but man would I love to! Even being as shy as I am, it still sounds like a total blast! Glad you had fun and got to spend some QT with your cutie!

  36. Looks like a ton of fun! I'm always jealous of the relay reports I read, seems like a whole different dynamic to a race/event.