The Connection Runners + team nuun

Hood to Coast Relay, The Leg From Hell

You can read about van decorations and team meetings HERE.

Van 1 met in the lobby of our hotel at 5:45am.

We stayed in Seattle, since that is where nuun HQ is located. The drive to Timberline Lodge at Mt. Hood was estimated to take about 3 hours. Of course, with a van full of ladies we stopped 3-4 times for potty breaks and coffee.

Along the way, we got a phone call from Mountain Magazine. They wanted to interview us about Hood to Coast. The phone was passed around, and we each answered questions. You can read the full interview HERE. Re-reading that interview made me crack up, this quote comparing the Nuun Platuun and After-nuun Delight teams especially:

"They have sort of a hippy theme going on, they’re all tie dye and bright colors. We’re kind of opposites. We’re the 'drop and give me 200 miles', they’re the stick a flower behind my ear."

I hadn't ever heard what their official theme was, how they described themselves, so when asked on the spot that was what my brain puked out. :) The magazine asked us to email her a picture of us, so we snapped a quick in van shot.

At our first sighting of Mt. Hood a cheer went up in the van.

The closer we got to the start line, the quieter I got. The rest of the van was getting louder, and more excited and I was turning inward. They teased me about it, telling me I looked nervous, I jokingly explained that was just my "game face" but truth be told, I was TERRIFIED.

Leg 1 was rated VERY HARD. In fact, when re-watching the Hood to Coast video, the founder Bob Foote says its one of the hardest of the course, and it is further described as "The leg from hell". "Its quad pounding, bone jarring, straight down a mountain".

Those descriptions were what led me to beg for leg 1. I WANTED the leg from hell, but the closer we got to that leg, the more nervous I got. I think being the first person to run is a lot of pressure, you're not really sure what to expect. Luckily we arrived at the start only 30minutes before our time, so I didn't have time to focus on it. We had fun checking out the other teams, the Storm Troopers were a huge hit.

While hanging out at the nuun tent, Bob from Dead Jocks in a Box came up asking for me. We had exchanged tweets, and it was cool to meet in person. Anyone that has watched the HTC movie knows the Dead Jocks are kind of Hood to Coast royalty, they ended up winning their division. Go Dead Jocks!

Soon it was time for Caitlin from nuun to give me the baton (which is really a slap bracelet), and snap a quick pic of van 1.

And then it was 12:30pm, time to go!

As I was running, I just kept thinking about how LUCKY I was. The view was gorgeous, there was a point where I came around a curve and a panoramic view of the mountains and surrounding area opened up and I had to remind myself I wasn't on a sight seeing tour, my legs needed to keep going when all my body wanted to do was stop and enjoy the view. You've probably read other recaps and know that Oregon was experiencing a heat wave. It was around 85 when I ran, which is warm, but not the 105 I'm used to, so it didn't bother me much. Along the way I would run past water falls which would give me a burst of cool air.

Nuun had a videographer follow us around. On this leg he was on a bike, cruising down the mountain next to me, then he would ride forward to video again as I came by. This was the view from the van of me and the videographer:

I felt funny the whole run. I ran with a handheld full of nuun, but was only able to take one sip, I tried to eat a honey stinger chew thinking I wasn't fueled properly, but had to spit it out. I felt nauseous and wasn't sure why. (someone later suggested maybe the elevation) Despite feeling off, I enjoyed my run.

I wrapped up the 5.64 miles a little slower than I was expecting, but overall I was happy with my run. I didn't injure myself, and more importantly I ENJOYED my run so overall I call it a win. I handed off to Captain Cupcake who killed her leg.

I then downed some chocolate milk and started assessing my toenail situation, ouch!

(continued)

HUGE shout out to the ladies at RunningSkirts.com for the amazing camo skirt. It was super comfortable, and totally functional with great pockets. I lost count the number of times someone yelled "Great skirt" out their windows.

HAPPY, hood to coast, nuun, nuun platuun, race, race recap, running, and more:

Hood to Coast Relay, The Leg From Hell + team nuun