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Cascade Lakes Relay 2010: Part 3 – Geek Turned Athlete

Cascade Lakes Relay 2010: Part 3

If you missed Part 1 and Part 2, clicky, clicky!

The shower that we found at 3:30 in the morning at some high school was the best shower of my life. When we walked into the locker room, it was steamy and smelled like clean girl. Usually, I don’t pay much attention to that smell, but it was pure heaven compared to how I smelled.

It only lasted 5 minutes (we were starving), but after being sticky with sunscreen, bug repellant, and dried salty sweat for hours on end in a van with 5 other people that smelled as bad as you did, it was so amazing. I can’t even put it into words.

After that, we grabbed some grub at a diner. Let’s just say it was food. It was vital nutrients to carry us through the next day. We didn’t end up getting to bed until 5:15am back at the cabin. We thought we estimated the other van’s time to take us through 2 hours of sleep until 7:30am. Two crucial hours of sleep.

Instead, we got a call around 6:30am that they were near the exchange point. After about an hour and a half of sleep, I gathered my belongs and sleep walked to the car. You have to understand, I do not do well on little sleep. I was literally delirious, and I think the rest of the van was too.

I did see this van before I ran that day, and it totally reminded me of this chica!


My leg was the last one for our van for the day! It was only 4 miles, but it was labeled as “HARD” on the course for the humungo hills!!

Waiting for the bracelet trade off…






Waiting for my garmin that I should have set up BEFORE the trade off…




I know it doesn’t look hilly here, but just around that corner was a behemoth of a hill, actually multiple hills. 😉


I have to admit, I walked up some of the hills. Hey, I was tired! And so were my legs!!

I only had one roadkill on this one, but no one passed me so I guess that was good. I ended up running an average pace of 9 something. I haven’t checked my garmin yet. I know, bad, bad. I didn’t really care when I got done. I was just happy to have not fallen asleep on the run.

Damage from the weekend…


A nasty little blister on my pinky toe… Sexy, huh?


Here we all were at the very end of the race.


I was so happy to be done, but we did have a great crew. One of the friend’s parents were in their late 60’s, and they ran at least 10 miles each over the 2 days. That just blew me away, and kept me motivated during this entire relay. If they could do this, I could definitely resist the urge to curl up in a ball and start crying due to lack of sleep! (I never wanted to do that, but it could happen on a hour and a half of sleep!)

To our van: I didn’t know any of you before we started this thing. Thank you so much for being so supportive and funny during this whole experience. I’m looking forward to my next relay in a week because of this first experience with you!


Have you ever done a relay race?

{ 20 comments… add one }

  • Erica August 8, 2010, 11:25 am

    Again- so cool! Worth the blisters 😉 I’ve never done a relay race, but now I totally want to. Great picture of all of you at the end too.

    • Nicole August 10, 2010, 2:59 pm

      You totally should!!

  • Tiffany August 8, 2010, 1:33 pm

    Looks like a fun yet chaotic time! I ran my first relay race this past May (Beach-to-Bay in Corpus Christi, Texas). It was only a marathon-distance relay, but it was pretty exciting. I ran the last leg, so when I crossed the finish line, I got to hear “‘We’ve Got the Runz’ from San Antonio, Texas!”. That’s the last time I let my friends pick our team name, I tell you whut.

    • Nicole August 10, 2010, 3:00 pm

      haha. We saw “The Runs” out there for a team name too! It is pretty creative when you think about it!

  • lindsay August 8, 2010, 1:56 pm

    Great job! I’ve done a marathon relay before. I think i was the 12k link. It was so fun! The only bad thins is waiting around for your part. :)

  • Lisa @ My High-Carb Lifestyle August 8, 2010, 2:20 pm

    Great race report, and nice job! I’ve never done a relay but it sounds really fun although a little crazy and exhausting. I don’t do well with sleep deprivation so I think that would be the worst part!

  • Sand Sock Girl August 9, 2010, 3:53 am

    Lovin the weather! The sky was so blue. I love the pix, I enjoyed seeing them and great report too. The blisters looks bad, ouch!

  • Heather August 9, 2010, 8:07 am

    That blister looks painful!

    I have always wanted to do a relay race – I think it would be so fun!

  • genesis August 9, 2010, 8:31 am

    ouch! that blister looks painful. thank god i didnt endure any blisters on my relay. the only pain i come away with is pain in my knees…i think id trade a blister for my knee pains…

    i too didnt know anyone on my relay team, well actually i knew one person, but basically everyone was just acquaintences of someone who knew someone and just threw us all together in a van and called us a team.

    good job again on your relay.

  • Lisa August 9, 2010, 9:49 am

    Fantastic photos! What an amazing one of the mountain too.

    Hood to Coast is in 18 days!! My first relay race!

  • Anne @ the doctor takes a wife August 9, 2010, 10:54 am

    What a gorgeous place to race :) I’m jealous of the views!!

  • Heather (Where's the Beach) August 9, 2010, 6:01 pm

    LMAO – I bet you really thought you were hallucinating to see the name of my blog ;0 What is it about pinky toe blisters? I swear, 20+ years of pointe shoes and I never had blisters – running, I get those stupid pinky toe blisters now. And girl, you are my freaking idol. You totally rock!

  • your best advice August 10, 2010, 3:31 pm

    only in grade school….looks fun!

  • nhopkins7 August 10, 2010, 3:55 pm

    Like Tiff said, “Beach to Bay” is something I’ve run before. It was a blast, and although I was 5 months pregnant I still loved running on the beach as the sun came up.

    Our team name was “The Tortoises and the Hairy” – 2 very hairy males, 2 females!

  • Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) August 10, 2010, 11:49 pm

    these pics are to die for…so beautiful!

  • pen August 11, 2010, 7:07 am

    Wow, what a beautiful backdrop for the race! I’m doing a relay in October and I’m so excited now!

    We should totally put together a bloggy relay team for something like Hood to Coast next year! you in? :)

    • Nicole August 11, 2010, 11:13 am

      Wow. Are you going to be on this side of the world next year? Hell, yeah I’m up for it!

  • TheHealthyApron August 11, 2010, 12:57 pm

    I did relay races in high school but they were sprints. I gave up running a few years ago because of my knees. Now I do more cross training activities. looks like beautiful scenery though!

  • Amber August 15, 2010, 8:24 pm

    Relay races are so much fun! There is one in central Idaho called the Sawtooth Relay that is 64 miles with a monster climb. It is one of the most beautiful courses though. I have ran it twice and the team you have can make or break it! Great job!


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