Saturday, August 24, 2013

Post Hood-to-Coast Relay

Continued from an earlier post

We wound up placing 3rd overall, higher than Google ever has, but came in 2nd in the corporate division.  As it turned out, a semi-pro team from Nike registered as a corporate team, since Nike is their employer.  Regardless, I don't think there's anyone on the team that wasn't proud of what we accomplished.  Google's best placement ever.  15 minutes under the time we thought we'd have.  Oh, and there's that little thing of running 198 miles in less than 20 hours.

A good chunk of us ran down to the ocean, wanting to finish running from Mt. Hood to the coast.  Most actually dove in.  Knowing how cold the ocean is off the coast of Oregon, I just got in up to my knees (for you Texans, it's about 20 degrees colder than Barton Springs).  Hung around the finish area a little longer, talking to other teams, asking them how their race went.  And just enjoyed the bright, warm, sunny morning we were treated to once the sun came out.

I slept almost the whole way back to Portland.  I'm not even sure how long it took.  After wearing the same running shorts, socks, and shirt for the past 24 hours, I took a much-needed shower and put on a nice, soft cotton shirt and a pair of jeans.  We walked to the Deschutes Brewery and had lunch.  I don't know if their corned beef sandwich was that good, or if I was just craving real food that badly.  No matter how much money you pay, nothing will ever taste better than your first hot meal after a tough race.  The world's richest man will never live the good life like us runners.

Walked back to the hotel and the entire team collapsed.  We seriously set an alarm for 8:00 at night so we could wake up and go out to celebrate.  Four hours of sleep and a Rebel must've been all I needed.  Spent the rest of the evening dancing up a storm, singing at the top of my lungs, and having a great time with some new friends.  Didn't get much sleep that night either.  Oh well.  Worth it.

Had a mostly quiet Sunday after all that transpired over the weekend.  Wound up making a makeshift breakfast taco scramble: eggs, turkey bacon, fried sweet potato, and tortilla chips.  Almost as good as the real thing.

Even though this race wasn't "my event" and didn't always play to my strengths, I thought it was an absolute blast.  It was fun to do a race as a team for once, especially being a part of a team that's not only this talented but also a bunch of great guys.  Off and on, we talked about whether or not we'd do this same race next year (this discussion took a major turn after that one astonishingly bad exchange point), and what other races we might wanna do sometime.  I think I'm gonna start looking into races in Hawaii, or the Grand Canyon, or anywhere else I'd like to visit for free.

And if this team wants me to run with them again?  Hell yeah, I'm in.