Quoting Dickins, "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times". This last weekend I spent an awesome time in chilly Las Vegas running in a team endurance event. Relay teams ran, walked, or crawled over 197 miles over a two day period with little rest or reprieve from the bone chilling wind. Injury, exhaustion, or the lack of nutrition and hydration would not validate the desire to give up. Someone had to cover those miles!
Team endurance events can include running, bicycling, duathlons (which are both running and biking) and triathlons (swimming, biking, and running). Distances can be relatively short or very long. Pick your poison, these events can really add variation and FUN to your workout goals. If you don't enjoy suffering alone during a workout, like me, then you should look into these types of events.
The relay in Las Vegas started with a buffet dinner with 11 other team members at the Stratosphere hotel and casino Thursday night. I knew only 3 of my teammates so we spent some time getting to know each other. The wake up call came at 2:30 am, shower, get all packed up, and hit the road for an hour drive to Mt. Charleston. Pre-race check in around 4:30 am in the FREEZING cold. Our first runner started at 5:30 am. Leg after leg, we fought the wind, the cold, and our own desires to pack it up and hit the nearest hotel/spa/casino! We caught a short rest here and there, a shower, a warm meal, and some peanut M&M's. With each passing hour our sense of inhibition diminished and soon our decency filter was gone. It made for some fun times and some even better memories! We used port-a-potties, talked to complete strangers (who were instant friends), and made fools of ourselves in public. We hurt, ached, premedicated, cursed, tried to trade distances with teammates, and loudly proclaimed that we were "too old for this $h!t!" NEVER AGAIN, after an onslaught on our bodies and minds, we promised we would never do another. I vowed to stick to the 5k's. But, dang it, I am already looking to do another because I had so much FUN doing that event! I have contacted a few of my teammates and they have agreed to do another in February in Phoenix with me! Great times ahead!
The fun with my team, the experience of suffering together makes these events a wonderful way to get up off the couch and be active. If your workouts have become lonely, check out a team event. You will make some new friends, associate with people who have the same goals as you, and have the support to push you further than you can push yourself. We hope to see you out there! Oh, and let us know if you need a team, we will be happy to have you!