When tucked away in the backseat of a rental van, the last thing you think you will be waking up to is the ringing of a cell phone at 3:30am... but that is when you AREN'T in the middle of a relay race.
For me that meant we were about to start the final day of our Reach The Beach adventure. Our Day 1 and Day 2 stories were told and we were ready to wrap this saga up and get to Hampton Beach. We had completed two out of our three legs.
Hey! I can tell you that 3+ hours of sleep was MORE than I accumulated over the course of my Ragnar Relay Cape Cod tenure. So I had nothing to complain about :)
I can tell you Van 1 got cleaned up, geared up and out of the van to meet Van 2 at the handoff in record time. Who said baby wipes don't make the best showers?
We took the hand off from Van 2 and wee were ready to tackle our final leg.
How gorgeous is the sunrise? Man I wish my iPhone could've captured all of the colors!
While the sun shined, the temperates rose, and the time passed, the chicks of Van 1 got the miles done. Karla, Kylie, Carrie, Rachel and Jess had all made their final legs their bitches. Yes I will go so far as to say that because they freakin' rocked my socks! We laughed, we smiled, we interviewed each other on tiny cameras given to us by New Balance.
Okay who put me in charge of a mini camera?
Before I knew it, it was my turn to run. My final leg was a pretty flat 5k.
But before I could run we would have to go to the right transition station. That's right folks. We went to the transition area AFTER mine! Enter Dani freakout! Noooo! I was hoping we would've made it the entire weekend without this slip-up but it happened. Luckily we were only about 5 minutes behind schedule so Jess didn't have to wait too long for us.
I felt like I needed make up the time since I was one of the main navigators! So I took this as an opportunity to push my legs as far as they could go after 16.6 TOUGH miles the day before.
Of course I had to make sure there was time for a selfie and a pic with a sign made juuusssttt for me. ;) Well I pretended it was just for me!
The signs were definitely on point during this 5k.
I may have also thought this sign was just for me.
I saw very few people on my final leg, which led to only 2 kills. But I was soaking up the final miles on the course. I wanted to finish strong and finish strong I did.
I handed the slap bracelet and a hug off to Mary and officially signed off on my first Reach The Beach. Damn that went by quickly!
I couldn't believe what my legs were able to produce during the final push!! It really built my confidence in what my body was capable of as a runner. It was definitely the motivation my mind had been looking for...
In total I collected 19.77 miles and 24 kills during my three legs of Reach The Beach. But more importantly I collected hundreds of laughs, hours of great time with fellow bloggers and dozens of snacks! ;)
With our runs done, we were headed to the Finish to wait for Van 2 to make it happen.
Since we had a few hours to kill, we had plenty of time for a celebratory beer and a quick lunch by the beach.
We took the shuttle to the Finish Line area which was already buzzing with other teams finishing their journeys.
And the bling was ON POINT!
Van 1 headed to the beach in our cute #NBGirlsRunBeta shirts to catch up with Rachel's family (who ran the race as an ultra team) and wait for our teammates.
We would be running the final stretch together. And of course I turned on my Garmin to catch the final little glimpse of running! :P
I wanted to be tally up all of my mileage... and squeak closer to 20 miles for the 2-day span.
It was awesome running through the Finish chute as an entire team. We had collected 200 miles between 12 amazing women.
I cannot thank New Balance enough for this opportunity. I made unbelievable memories along the way.
Plus since I ran both Ragnar Cape Cod AND Reach The Beach I received an extra Overboard medal. I had no idea I would be getting an extra medal until I overheard someone talking about it on the shuttle. Thanks random stranger.
With the good times dwindling down, Van 1 headed back to Boston to clean out the van and venture home. Thankfully I was just a brief T ride away from being back with my little family.
The wife was psyched she didn't have to drive to New Hampshire to pick me up that she took me out for a little date night to celebrate!
Overall, the Reach The Beach experience was unparalleled. New Balance outfitted #NBGirlsRunBeta with everything we could've needed. And during this journey I found out the NB Vazee Pace would be my new running shoe of choice. The course was challenging yet rewarding. The company outstanding. The scenery breathtaking. The memories priceless.
Would I run Reach The Beach again? Ab-so-freakin-lutely! If you are looking for an out of this world experience with a group of friends that are up for an adventure, then Reach The Beach should be on your To-Do List.
Just remember the baby wipes... and the car air fresheners... and the snacks... and...