Saturday, April 14, 2007

Sunrise to Sunset Relay Leg 2

My second leg of the race started around 2:15 in the morning. After only getting about 45 minutes of napping in, I was tired, but after moving around I became more alert. But, not alert enough to start my Garmin in time for it to get a satellite fix... so no mapping data, only time.

Legs 10-18 of the event were along the Lake Okeechobee Scenic Trail (i.e. LOST, what a great acronym). It was a clear, dark, cool night and I quickly found a great pace for what I thought would be a 6 mile run - an 8 minute mile. I ran along just listening to the night, and the assortment of chirping and clicking that a zillion nocturnal animals and bugs made. It was a little spooky at times, but I had my headlamp which was really good illumination.

So I was shocked to arrive at the next transfer point in only 16 minutes!

I got my phone out (after the hit-run we decided everybody would run with a cellphone) and called the next runner, Christine. She was shocked to hear from me so soon, as was everyone else in the van. Below the trail in a parking lot, I could a few people coming out and walking up to meet me.

Christine mentioned a few times she didn't really want to run alone in the middle of the night, so I offered to run with her. Her leg was supposed to be about 5 miles so I figured if that were still accurate ;) I could do a total of 7, no big deal.

So we set off and she played some music on her cell phone, which had a speaker loud enough for both of us to hear. I'm a little faster than Christine so it wasn't hard to let her set the pace and keep up. She mentioned that my headlamp was a real lifesaver because the flashlight she brought to run with wasn't very bright at all.

Our run was uneventful except for us getting passed by another team midway through - a runner and a trailing cyclist. I think for next year having a cyclist along would really help - other than my start leg when the teams we started with hadn't spread out, this were the only people I saw on the road with me during the whole event. I saw other teams running, other vans, and my own team, but never another runner while I was running!

We arrived at the next spot in 55 minutes, and I estimate it was really 5.5 miles instead of 5. So my leg 2 was relay segments 14 and 15, a total of about 7.5 miles in 71 minutes for a ~9:30 pace, not bad at all.

Since it was now about 3:30 am, I had no problems getting a good nap in!

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