Saturday, September 17, 2011

Blue Ridge Relay

I want to shake the hand of the man or woman who came up with this. A 208 mile relay race through the mountains, through day and night, from Grayson Highlands to Asheville.

My friend Jorge (running below) only had to ask me once. That's Emily above enjoying a pristine segment along the North Fork of the New River.

Emily and I were the only non-BB&T members of the team. Below, that's Oscar, Hernan (with four arms), Matt, and Jorge as we cheered on the Van #1 runners.

Each team member ran three legs. I totaled 21 miles for my part. We had just enough time to recover, so in Van 2 we ran each segment to the point of vomit. Now, that's team spirit.

After finishing my 7.5 mile middle of the night run. I chugged two waters, ate a bagel and Snickers bar, changed into my pajamas, brushed my teeth, and then Jorge asked me to run his 3.2 mile segment with him. I said, No. Then, the excitement of the event overtook me and I tore off my pajamas, threw on my shoes, and ran after him without a vest or reflectors. I went 1.5 miles before the bagel, Snickers, and water coagulated into a giant mass in my stomach and gave me the worst stomach cramp in the history of cramps. I had to send Jorge on, but I couldn't stop or I'd be left behind. So I gutted (literally) out the last 1.7. It was awesome.

This Van is an example of the Team Spirit we were competing against. Representing a bank, we kept our van clean. (But inside, we all wanted to do something to it.)

In Asheville, we finished the last leg together, drank a beer and ate a burger to celebrate. We ended up 37th of 100something teams. Pretty good. Our Van walked down 59 runners over the course of the race (not that we were counting.)

I want to personally thank the Best Bank in Town for the opportunity to tag along. Thank you also to Lia, who let me go on the adventure. Maybe she can join the team next year!

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