January 13, 2016

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap with Nuun Hydration

I FINALLY have my big ol' Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 recap. I know you have been waiting with bated breath for this

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap with Nuun Hydration

I was lucky to be able to run this race in November with Team Nuun athletes again, with half of them being my friends I ran Hood to Coast with in 2014 so it was a nice reNUUNion! I was really excited because it was my first Ragnar Relay as well as my first trip to Las Vegas! Yes, only I have my first visit to Vegas to run a race #crazyrunnerlady. 

Ragnar Relay is an overnight relay race with 12 runners on a team who total run 200-ish miles all while travelling in vans and meeting up at exchange points.

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap

Our Nuun team Viva Los Electrolitos was made up of 12 runners, 2 vans with Nuun employees Brian and Eleanor driving and running with us.  I was in Van 2 the all-lady van because #girlpower. 
Ragnar Relay Team Nuun Las Vegas 2015 Recap
My day flying out was stressful because I had 2 classes and a quiz to take before booking it the airport to catch my afternoon flight across the country. I was so in awe of the view of Nevada from the plane as we got close. Nevada seriously looks like Mars. 

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap Nevada View
Actual photo from the airplane window
It was awesome seeing the Vegas strip for the first time just as the sun set. Everything is so huge and flashy. I was totally ooh and ahhing the whole cab ride over to the hotel on the strip. 

las-vegas-The Hangover


I was definitely feeling hungry and a little groggy once I got to the Vegas after the long flight and time change. Once I got to the Flamingo Hotel on the strip the whole gang headed up to start decorating our vans.  

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap

After decorating, we all grabbed dinner and margaritas at a Mexican restaurant close by as well took a bunch of photos. 

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap The Linq

I had a late night dancing and hanging out in the casino, but I was Runner 12 in Van 2 so the next morning was very leisurely since I wouldn't be running until the afternoon. After hitting up the casino's breakfast buffet (another Vegas must!) I went to check out the hotel's actual flamingos. 

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap Flamingo

Before I knew it, it was time to pack into the van and head out. 

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap
View from the top of the parking garage
We made it to our first van exchange point outside of Vegas and went through the safety talk and checked in.  It was exciting to check out all the vendors set up and see all of the other teams. You may not be able to tell from my attire, but it was really freaking windy and cold. Note to self-bring more tights next time. 

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap

It was really fun to meetup with the rest of our team from Van 1 and hear about how their first legs went. Eventually our team's Runner 6 handed off to Eleanor, our Runner 7 and into the van we went for the start of Van 2's race.  


Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap
Apparently everyone's "silly face" is tongues out or mouth open.
If you've ever done an overnight relay you know that once your van is running things get kinda crazy with figuring out directions, dropping runners off, and making sure you meet your incoming runner. My van was full of awesome ladies who were fun to hang out with and kept things really chill.  
Course map from Ragnar Relay site
Just like Hood to Coast, peanut butter filled pretzels are my go-to van snack of choice!
Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap peanut butter pretzels

My first leg was 4 flat and easy miles which went by fast. Once I finished my first leg it was nighttime and cold so we all managed to stop and grab some food nearby.  Everybody was definitely starting to feel tired and maybe a little loopy. 

Our van's second set of legs took us out into the desert. 
Most of the time the view was mostly like this:
Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap

However we did find some nice photo ops along the way!

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap

One the sun set it got really freaking cold. For some reason I was expecting it to be warmer in Vegas than it was in Maryland, but I was wrong! I suited up in my awesome Brooks Running gear for my second leg which started around 3 AM.  Despite our smiles in this photo, it was freezing at the exchange so we all just kind of shivered and stood in silence waiting for Lisa to come running in. 

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap

Next I did my second leg which was about a 5K down a mountain and then finished fast to the exchange point at a school near Boulder City. It was pretty solitary which was eerie as I came down the mountain, and my brain was totally thinking about what I would do if I saw a desert critter or a creepy person to pass that time. Eventually, I passed a few people in the neighborhood area during the last mile or so.  I was so freaking cold when I finished that the school's cafeteria which was serving coffee, hot chocolate, and Costco muffins literally felt like heaven.  Plus I managed to get in there and use a real bathroom! 

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap

After my leg we drove to the next exchange still out by Boulder City and tried to get a few hours of sleep in the van.  It was awesome getting to see the sunrise and using the bathroom at the park to change and clean up a little bit in the morning.  

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap

This last set of legs for our van seemed to drag on for me since I was the last runner. I pretty much spent all day waiting around to run! The weather was a little warmer, and it was exciting to watch everybody go off to run their last leg. 

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap

In between runners, Eleanor was fulfilling our van's members' "last leg" wishes so we drove around and made a few trips including Starbucks and froyo. Of course I still had to run my hardest leg, but froyo is good running fuel, right

Finally near 4 in the afternoon it was my time to head to the last exchange! I My last leg was just shy of 8 miles and rated hard because it was a gradual uphill climb the whole way. I was just ready to get my leg over with so I was feeling pretty chill going into the run.  

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap

Ragnar was not kidding about it all being uphill though. Most of the leg was along major roads and past neighborhoods as I made the slow climb towards the Red Rock Resort. I had my tunes and just tried to jam out and enjoy my last run of Ragnar Vegas! I earned my most roadkills (runners I passed) on this leg partially because I was feeling pumped, partially because this was the leg that I saw the most other runners on. 


Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap
Selfie at a stoplight close to the finish aka #bloggerproblems
It was really awesome when I got to the final stretch of my leg and saw all the vans waiting for their runners and cheering. I got to meet up with my team, and all of us ran across the finish line together! 

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap

After finishing it was time to grab our free beers and celebrate!

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Recap

It would have been nice to have been Van 1 who got to hang out at the Red Rocks party earlier and take a dip in the pool,ahem, but it was still a really swanky place to relax after the race.

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015 Red Rocks

After the after-party everyone was pretty tired and headed back to the Flamingo Hotel again. We all got to finally shower, change,and grab some food. I spent the night grabbing drinks and exploring the strip some more (I'll sleep when I'm dead right?) and managed to get a few hours of sleep before flying out the next morning. It was quite the whirlwind weekend. It's not really about time, more about the experience, but our team ended up not doing too shabby and finished the race in 31:30:21 plus 37th out of 217 teams!  

My teammate George put together an awesome video for the whole team which you can check out here

I really love how the all of the medals fit together like a puzzle! I thought my first Ragnar Relay was a great experience and definitely hope to do more in the future. I think that the Ragnar Vegas is fun because you can make a cool weekend out of it hanging out in Vegas . It was a really fun way to take a racecation! The course does kind of just have you driving around in circle around actual Las Vegas which might not be for everyone. 
Overall, everything was pretty well-organized and ran pretty smoothly.  

Also I need to thank Nuun Hydration again for organizing this team Viva Los Electrolitos and letting me be a part of this adventure, and especially Brian for organizing and Eleanor for being a great driver and van-mate! Nuun really is a kickass company that I'm so happy to be a tiny part of. I appreciate everyone who works for them all and all the hard work they put in supporting their ambassadors and athletes as well.  

Ragnar Relay Las Vegas 2015-medals

I'm so grateful to have had the opportunity to run an awesome race in a new place with Nuun friends old and new. Hopefully I get the chance to explore somewhere new with Nuun in 2016!

This post was linked up with Wild Workout Wednesdays and All Things Fitness.  


Have you ever done a Ragnar Relay?  Did you take a racecation this past year?

22 comments:

  1. Sounds like so much fun! Ragnar is the one thing I haven't done. I don't know how I'd do with the lack of sleep.

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    1. It's so fun. The lack of sleep isn't too bad once you get past those delirious early morning hours.

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  2. I felt the EXACT same way during my middle-of-the-night leg during Ragnar. Even though I was running through what were quite clearly upper middle class residential neighborhoods in Racine, Wisconsin, I was 100% every car on the road was going to kidnap me. Worst six miler of my LIFE (from a fear standpoint) haha. I'm glad I did Ragnar, but I'll never, ever do one again - I cannot handle that kind of sleep deprivation!

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    1. Haha, it's so silly but something about how dark and quiet it was freaked me out.

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  3. Loved this recap! I've been dreaming of doing a Ragnar for years, it looks like such an amazing experience. The first time I went to Vegas was in late March and it was cold then! Figures, right?

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    1. You should totally do one soon! I don't know why I figured it would be so much warmer than the east coast!

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  4. Okay so this made me want to 1) go to Vegas, 2) re-watch The Hangover, and 3) Run a Ragnar. I'm thinking I'd do Cape Cod. Maybe next year I can do Rock n' Roll Vegas because it just sounds epic... and maybe The Hangover will be my movie choice on the flight to Hawaii haha I feel like a running relay is one of those things you have to experience at least once!

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    1. Ooh Cape Cod would be fun. Or we could do ZOOMA Cape Cod too. The Hangover is great-I need to go back to Vegas and hit up more of the food there haha

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  5. Ugh. Now I want to go to Vegas again too AND run another Ragnar! Looks like SO MUCH FUN. And I couldn't agree more, Nevada looks so much like what I imagine Mars to look like!

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    1. It was SO fun. I want to go back and do both again too :)

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  6. You don't think that it can get cold in the desert, but boy does it! It still sounds like an awesome experience! I hope I get to do a Ragnar one day!

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    1. So cold, especially with the wind and literally nothing to block it! You should definitely put it on your bucket list!

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  7. Your experience sounds incredible!! I would love to run a Ragnar. I volunteered at one last fall and had a great time in the atmosphere. It's definitely something I'd like to do in the next couple of years.

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    1. Ah the volunteers were great! It's definitely a fun experience especially if you get a group of friends together to run one.

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  8. This seriously sounds like a blast! I'm planning on doing the Chicago/Madison, Wisconsin Ragnar in June and I'm so excited. The picture of that sunrise is so pretty!

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    1. I had a friend who wanted me to do the Chicago one with his group but I can't miss school, BOO. Have fun!

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  9. Ragnar is the best! I ran my first one last year (Colorado) and I'm dying to do another one soon! It sounds like you had a really good time. Congrats on finishing in one piece!

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    1. Ooh Colorado sounds fun! I want to try a Ragnar Trail next!

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  10. Agh! Such a good time and I'm so happy I was finally able to meet you!

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    1. Ditto, Lisa! Hope to race and see you more this year!

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  11. Call me Jane2/18/16, 4:27 AM

    oh. Viva Las Vegas!

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  12. The snacks here had a smooth taste with a bit of cheese and lime juice. To start, we got pork rinds at Chicago venues here; they were really flavorful with a spicy kick and smooth taste. Plus, it was a large fresh bag too, place is worth the price.

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