Friday, August 17, 2018

Elkhorn Relay 2018 – The Report

Elkhorn Relay 2018
Team Gang Greens at the start
Elkhorn Relay 2018 found us on our fifth year as a team of running buddies sharing an experience that proved once again that we are alive, healthy, able to endure fatigue and discomfort, supportive, happy, and maybe a little bit crazy! Due to circumstances beyond our control, only three of the original team members were able to participate this year and we missed the Pages dearly. Although the complexion of the team varies from year to year, every participant becomes a part of the Team Gang Greens family. You simply cannot share an experience like this without becoming forever one of the gang.

Check out the bank reader board. 
107 degrees!
Elkhorn Relay is organized and carried out by Doomsday Racing, a non-profit organization sending excess relay proceeds to a charity or ministry in foreign countries. You can learn more about Doomsday Racing and Elkhorn Relay HERE.

We chose this race for several reasons:

Accessibility – that was before I moved to Montana!

Affordability – all the organization and race weekend legwork are done voluntarily. Even the folks providing pancakes, pulled pork, and hamburgers and hot dogs!

Challenging Course – they bragged about the course and we know why! The 100+ temps magnified the challenge.

Where's my leg?
We loved this race for these reasons:

Accessibility – a short drive from the Treasure Valley, this relay is convenient for the running community in Boise and surrounding areas. The drive home is especially nice as the weekend’s sleep deprivation begins to take its toll.

The view!
The Course – we don’t train all season for a Fun Run! If you’re going to challenge yourself and your teammates, you might as well go for it. We dubbed this course the EKG and even put it on our team shirts!

Free Food – Really! Except for half a banana and a muffin at the end, most races require you to purchase your food. It isn’t so much about the money, but the convenience of having a meal ready so you don’t have to locate your money in the chaos that is your race van. Fresh water and sports drinks were also provided. Oh, and huckleberry muffins!

The Volunteers – they might not have been running, but many spent long hours volunteering at exchange zones, some fulfilling multiple shifts. I’m rather certain they were also experiencing sleep deprivation. One station lit up their canopy AND the portable toilet with Christmas lights! It was a welcoming sight at midnight. They were happy to be there, or they were very good actors. Best volunteers I’ve experienced at a relay!

Portable Toilets – okay, this is important to relay runners. They were clean and plentiful. Thank you!

We love our teammates for these reasons:

Adventurous Spirits – not every person you meet is willing to try something as challenging and unpredictable as a relay race. The weather may change (and it did) from blistering heat to a thunderstorm and back again. The team deals with it.

Happy People – its not okay to be grouchy when everyone around you is also tired, sore, uncomfortable, and doing their best to remain positive. It’s not easy to go without normal sleeping and eating patterns while exerting repeated physical activity. The team deals with it.

Injuries happen.
The team deals with it!
Runners to the Rescue – someone often gets injured. It’s just the nature of the running beast. And someone always steps up to log extra miles, or swap out an easier run, or run early to allow his teammate extra recovery time. It wasn’t planned, but the team deals with it.

Assisting a teammate
 at the end of her run.
Runner’s Respect – running is hard. Don’t ever think that the guy out their logging miles is doing it pain free or that you would be a runner if it was as easy for you as it is for a runner. It’s just plain hard and there is a bond that forms when people share misery. I often say, “A relay is the most miserable fun you will ever have.” It’s also a very effective way to gain family, the kind of family you were not born with, but will never let you down.

“Are you crazy?” People will ask, or maybe its an accusation. Perhaps we are, but we get to hang out with the best kind of crazy people on earth! They are relay runners, and they are family.
We made it!
206 miles in 31 hours 46 minutes!
Thanks, Elkhorn Relay, for a great weekend. We had fun and your volunteers were the best!

Catching some ZZZ anywhere he can!                      Cooling off!

Van 1 is done!
Team bonding. We love our pre-race dinner!
Running Granny Green encourages women, especially grandmothers, to gain greater fitness by providing tips and inspiration to insure long years of joyful grand-parenting. The cookie recipes are a bonus!

Happy Running!
Carol - aka Running Granny Green

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