This past weekend Team Nuun Energy took to the streets of Chicago with one goal: to win and keep their title as Ragnar Relay Chicago champions!
Nuun crew member Vishal spearheaded the team, so we asked him, “What exactly does it take to win a Ragnar Relay?”
Here is his list of requirements. Think you can take on Team Nuun Energy next year?
By Vishal Patel
This past weekend I had the pleasure of running with eleven really fast guys, trying to repeat what we did a year ago. Win Ragnar Madison to Chicago. In 2013, we ran a solid relay and crossed the finish line in 19:45 covering the 197 (202 in our case) at a 5:49 per mile pace. (Note from the Nuun editor: This pace is absolutely flying!)
This year we sought out to defend our title, with an additional goal of being one of five teams to start last, and hopefully cross the finish line first. We completed one of those goals, and that was defending our title! We crossed the finish line this year in 19:18:20 covering the 196.1 mile (205 in case) at a 5:41 per mile pace. (Note from the Nuun editor: Again, these guys were seriously flying!)
So what does IT TAKE TO WIN? Here are my suggestions:
1. Find 12 guys that are willing to do 3 tempo runs, with less than 3 hours of recovery in between runs. (That also means little to no sleep.)
2. These guys also need to be able to run a 5:40 pace for 200+ miles, and most importantly have a BLAST while doing so!
3. Find 2-4 drivers that are willing to, ahem, break some rules to get to an exchange FAST. When you have fast runners your drivers need to get to each exchange even more quickly.
5. Find some runners who want to run hard and PR, be it at 3am or on their 3rd leg.
4. DRINK NUUN of course!
5. Recovery is done best with chocolate milk, chips, and candy. And Nuun.
6. Stay awake with Double Shot Espresso’s and Nuun Energy between each run, because let’s be honest, you probably won’t sleep.
7. Have plenty of baby wipes on hand, for “showering”, spills, and other assorted uses.
8. Make sure your finish line has enough beer for 12 thirsty runners!
9. Run fast, and make it fun.
10. During a relay, something will always go wrong. For example, last year we ran an extra 4 miles by getting lost, and this year we ran about 8 miles extra by getting lost. Adversity happens, dig deep and stay focused.
Thanks Vishal! Now who’s ready to run a relay?