Last weekend was one of the coolest running related experiences I've ever had; I was part of an eight person team that ran the RAGNAR Northwoods Trail race.
The race was located in 9 Mile Forest in Wausau, WI. We had a campsite in the woods and ran three loops of different lengths on trails through the trees. Each person on the team ran all three loops in a different order. The loops were 3 miles, 5 miles and 7.6 miles long. One runner per team would run at a time, and we'd "hand off" our race bib and number to the next runner.
Even though we weren't going for speed, my team finished 9th overall in a field of over 270 teams! In our specific group category we did even better, finishing 4th, with a time of 21:12:07!!
I ran at 7pm (3 miles), 1:30am (7.6 miles), and 9am (5 miles). It was a really cool schedule because I saw the forest at dusk, overnight, and mid-morning. Each setting was a memorable running experience. Besides being the longest run, the overnight one was the hardest because it was almost all up hill, and had lots of obstacles like tree roots, rocks, and mud holes that I had to navigate using only a headlamp. Plus, for most of the trail there were no other runners around me.
When I wasn't running I hung out at camp, or in "The Village," which is where there was food, a bonfire, music, movies, hammocks and lots of coffee!! Coffee was clutch because I only slept about 2 hours during the entire event.
Part of what made the weekend so special was spending time with two of my best friends, Jon and Tory. These guys mean a lot to me and having this memory together is something I'm very grateful for.