This is Sione from the Biggest Loser! He was the announcer at the beginning and end of the Ragnar. He is super cute in person! He was awesome and let us take a picture with him. :)
We started the race at 7:30 am. We probably should've started a little later because our pace times were faster than predicted, but that's OK. It made for a whole different experience, because we were in the 2nd or 3rd position through the whole race (after Troy picked off everyone in his first leg, and we all picked off more people after that - I think we had a total of like 68 road kills!), so we were basically by ourselves the whole time. It was weird to get to a major transition and see all the vans because it felt like there was no one in the race until we saw them all there! (A little scary running completely by yourself in the middle of the night, but cool to know you're totally in front!)
Here is Troy. He started us off on leg #1. He seriously kicked butt! He had an 8.8 mile HARD run, and he kept an average pace of 7:15. He passed every person in our starting group! This picture cracks me up because he wasn't really dying there, but it looks like it. :) (Troy kept a sub 7 pace on his next 2 runs...AMAZING!)
Troy passed the slappy bracelet on to Dixie. She didn't have a watch, so we're not really sure about her paces, but they were fast, and she did great! During the first leg everyone was happy and excited and felt great. Middle of the night legs were a little tougher. :)
Dixie passed the bracelet to me and I had one of my BEST RUNS EVER!!!! I am NOT a fast runner, but I was able to keep a 7:57 pace on this 7 miles! It was downhill, so that helped a ton! I loved it. :) I was feeling great, and realizing that all this Ironman training is REALLY working and paying off. Thank goodness...it gave me hope for May 7! (Although, let's face it...St. George is NOT all downhill. In fact it is relentlessly uphill much of the time. Boo on that).
Just a little proof for everyone! :)
We began our next legs at about 6 I think. This is where you have to wear your reflective vests, head lamps and flashing red "butt lights." This is usually one of my favorite runs of the weekend. I love running in the dark! This year I had a good run, but it was definitely my hardest leg. It was only 6.3 miles, but it was HARD because I was diverted from the road to a trail where I nearly sprained my ankle multiple times, had to pass down a seriously steep, rocky downhill section, and then finally made it back to the road section. This leg had hills on it, which I HATE! And...8 coyotes ran across the road in front of me and scared the crap out of me! I was so afraid they were going to turn and chase me, and NO ONE was around! I was by myself the entire time. My first leg I passed 4 people, and only one person passed me the entire time. No one passed me on any other leg, and I wasn't around anyone else ever to try and pass them. Crazy! But my night leg pace was 8:59. Much slower, but still under 9, so I was happy with it!!
Because of that, I ran in the dark TWICE! Weird...that's never happened before! But, my last run turned out awesome. I ran 7.88 miles in 1:03, which gave me an 8:01 pace. I actually thought I was going faster, and thought I was under 8, but that's OK! It was great. Again...all downhill! I LOVE ME SOME DOWNHILL!
We finished our legs at 8:30 and decided to go to my mom and dad's house to have REAL showers and some rest before meeting our teammates at the finish line. We were the 2nd or 3rd team at the exchanges the entire weekend, and it was awesome! But, by the time we finally finished some other teams had passed us. The thing with Ragnar is, they stagger the start times depending on how fast/slow you are. Since we started to early (and ran faster than we thought we would) we were out ahead for the most part. But...the faster groups that started later took LOTS less time! :) Overall we got 78th place - out of 306 teams! I felt pretty dang good with that. And we got 26th out of 129 in our division. Our total time for 197 miles was 28 hours, 45 minutes. Not bad!
This is all the Crandells that participated! Chester (Troy's dad), Leon (Troy's brother), Amy (Leon's wife), me, Troy, and Colby (Troy's sister's husband)