Meanwhile… we were seeing tweets and receiving texts about Monica who had apparently woken up delirious and motivated. At their van’s exchange where they had some time to rest, she decided to seek out all the vans that had tagged their van (written on the side of their van), and tag them back with a customized Chuck Norris quote.
Pretty funny, eh? This van was some sort of science van (I honestly can’t remember their team name)
That is NOT a drawing of the state of Florida on the side of that van…
After Bob crossed the street to meet us, he was done with his second leg. It was our van’s turn to relax. I believe we had about two hours. This is the point where we began leapfrogging with some runners skipping their assigned leg and running a leg at the same time as another teammate. (This is also the point where I may get things a little wrong because details are fuzzy…)
Our van headed off in search of IHOP. I would have passed the baton onto Monica, but she chose to skip her leg and run with Brooke later on to save us time. So the next leg of the race was actually Leif’s 7 mile bridge! Andrea had chosen to run with him (are you keeping up with all this??) so it was super awesome to drive by and see both of them running strong and tackling the beast! Honestly, this bridge looked loooooong, kinda boring, and really HOT. Being on the bridge, there was NO shade or tree cover. It seems to me to be one of those runs you enjoy afterwards knowing you accomplished it.
Our van stopped at IHOP, and as usual, they were slammed. There was a wait but wasn’t too painfully long. What WAS painful was how long it took us to get waters, menus, orders, food, check etc. Half our table got their food before the other half. I ended up slamming down a few last french fries after the rest of my team had finished and paid their checks. Hooooorible service. Plus, we were worried we were running late to meet up with Van 1! Since we were leapfrogging, vans had less downtime in between.
We headed to the next exchange and traffic was hooorible. I hadn’t mentioned it yet, but Bob had driven about 98% of the time so far. In fact, Bob was so awesome, he spoiled everyone by not only coordinating the rental of van 2, but he covered the cost of the van rental and gas. Holy moly!! THANK YOUUUUUUUUUUU Bob. Seriously appreciated. So at this point, traffic on A1A was bumper to bumper. I offered to Bob that we could pull over and swap (I was in the passenger seat at this point). He said no.. I started to doze off from the heat of the sun thru the windshield.. next thing I heard was him saying.. OK yea.. Chinese Fire Drill? SURE! That snapped me out of it. (Ragnar officials, stop reading at this point but know I was wearing my safety vest!) We came to a bumper to bumper stop. He hopped out, I hopped out, and suddenly I was behind the wheel of a 15 passenger van.
We drove to the exchange for a brief restroom break. It was some sort of school, this was Adam’s final 4 mile leg. Things were kinda nutty and super busy at this leg, so I unfortunately do not have a picture of him heading out either.
Stopped at one exchange and it was an adult bookstore. I should have gone inside & bought something to take advantage of the air conditioning. What’s the adult bookstore equivalent of a pack of gum, I wonder..
Next up was Roxie who had the pleasure of starting at the Adult Bookstore (I think this was her stop), then Amanda, then Melissa. This part was a blur. I don’t seem to have any photos (which really helps jog the memory).
Melissa hands off to Bob who took off on his final 3.5 leg of the race
Finally it was time for my final leg. We were setup in front of a gas station. Bob came in, slapped the slimy baton on my wrist, and I headed out. I started along the highway which quickly turned residential. I kept my sanity here by running a 4/1. So I ran for 4 minutes, then quickly walked for one minute and repeated. I eventually switched to a 2/1 which had pulled me through the Subaru Half Marathon a few months prior. I was so tired at this point, I just couldn’t keep the math in my head for a 4/1. I crossed a road and switched to a 1/1. I was surprised to realize I could actually run faster on the one minute spurts that I’d been previously running. Even more, I actually wanted to run faster. I also really looked forward to each walk break. I hadn’t brought water, so I was desperately looking for the water station which was supposed to be around mile 2.5/3.
About this time the scenery had changed & I was running on the waterfront. It was beautiful.
Came across the water table finally. The guy saw me dunp a cup of water over my head. He said he had a mister & volunteered to spray me. When I walked over I realized it was one of those yard insect sprayers. Gross!! I’m praying it had never been used before. I was too polite and had too little energy to protest. He sprayed me with insecticide-water & I pressed on.
Isn’t that sunset beautiful?? After I took this shot, the route took me away from the waterfront, and back onto streets & sidewalks. I was getting pretty close. I think I was about 2 miles away from the finish line at this point.
A few times I got a little worried that I’d lost the route because there weren’t that many RAGNAR directional signs along the way. (I was just being paranoid).
Because I was getting nervous, I pulled up the Find Friends app on my phone to make sure I was running towards my teammates who were waiting at the finish line. This app was a HUUUUGE help during the entire race. Several teammates downloaded the app so we could keep track of where they were along their routes. It was a huge help.
I saw a woman standing next to Ragnar street sign that had stopped blinking. When I came up she said “246” into her walkee talkee. This meant I was close, really close! I have no idea where the “one mile left” sign was. I got a burst of energy & rounded the corner.
Everyone met me on the sidewalk before the finish line & we crossed together at the same time. I’d had them bring my team shirt so I could put it on beforehand. It was great to see everyone in their team shirts as designing & printing the shirts was one of the tasks I had been assigned.
After we crossed, Stephanie did her magic at a tent & came back with our medals. Talk about heavy! And they’re bottle openers!
Then we went to a cool looking restaurant on the water & got our free beers. Yuck! I’m sorry, Saltwater. I’m sure it’s typically a nice beer, but for someone that literally just finished running 6 miles, it was horrible. I didn’t want to tarnish my beer drinking reputation, so I TRIED to drink it, but it just wasn’t happening. We all decided to make our way to the hotel. I tossed my beer along the way.
Ahh we did it!!