Ragnar Wasatch Back Part 2


As I was saying in my previous post, we drove to the starting line in nervous and excited silence. When we arrived, we did our safety check with the Ragnar team and before we knew it our 10am start time arrived. The starting line for Ragnar was unlike any race that I have been to. It is quite low key because they taper the start times according to your predicted finish time, so the slower you think your team will be, the earlier your start time is. Don’t get me wrong, there was plenty of people having a good time – teams were dressed up, music, and a tent with Ragnar shirts, hats and accessories for sale – but just not the chaos you might experience at, let’s say, a large marathon. I liked it, becasue I was really able to relax and not think of the huge running endeavor in front of me.

Meghan from Meghan's Wanderings.blogspot.com at the starting line.
Meghan from Meghan’s Wanderings.blogspot.com at the starting line.

I was runner number one and starting the race. My first leg was 7.7 miles long and considered “Very Hard.” I wasn’t too worried except for the heat and exposure. This leg started uphill and climbed up through the Bonneville Shoreline Trail with incredible views of the valley. Aside from some neck pain and a mild headache, I felt good on this run.

Time: 7.7 miles in 1:11, average pace 9:15.

View from the Bonneville Shoreline Trail. Leg 1 of #RagnarWB
View from the Bonneville Shoreline Trail. Leg 1 of #RagnarWB

I handed off to the amazing Holly Roberts, this woman can run! I never saw her give anything less than 100% on every run, even when she was sleepless and out of gas. She pushed to the max every time.

Holly in her first run Leg 2 #Ragnarwb
Holly in her first run Leg 2 #Ragnarwb

The next Legs would be run by these beauties… to read about their legs and much more exciting recaps, click on the links below…


After their runs, I was up again for my second round, Leg 7 – 4.7 miles considered very easy. This one was easy, it went through a quiet neighborhood and a small town and was over in a flash. It was hot, and my headache was beginning to really hurt. When I got back in the van Meghan gave me a “to-go” packet of Barlean’s Fish oil to take (I would take one after each run and stay migraine free the rest of the relay). If it were not for Barlean’s, things might have turned out horrible for me. High quality fish oil has been shown to reduce inflamation and increase energy and endurance, I am so grateful that Meghan had them with her!


Time: 4.7 miles in 39:20, average pace 8:17.

My third run, Leg 13 (8.2 miles and considered “Very Difficult”), started at a major exchange at the base of Snowbasin ski resort. I went straight up the mountain for about one mile and then it connected onto the highway and straight downhill for the next 6 miles. This was the first leg where we needed to wear headlamps and reflective vests as it was getting late, around 7pm. It had cooled off and I felt great on this run. The intense downhill pounding left my knees feeling wobbly but overall this run was one of my best.

Time: 8.2 miles 1:10, average pace 8:36.

Getting dark in #HighNuun van
Getting dark in #HighNuun van

I tried to get some sleep around 10pm, but honestly it was more like closing my eyes, as it was tough to sleep through the noise and transition of each runner. Our driver Ned, was incredible, keeping us on time to each exchange, despite the lack of sleep. He’s a complete stud!

I started my fourth run, Leg 19, at 11pm and it had gone from hot in the day time to temps that dropped into the 30’s at night. I was shivering, waiting for Vieve to come, and happy to begin my run (only 3.7 miles and considered “Moderate”). They lie, it was straight up hill! LOL I was really hoping my night run would be more enjoyable.. a flat and easy, but it was still amazing to be running through a mountain pass in complete darkness. This was one of the highlights for me. I loved that feeling of not being able to see that much in front of you, just trusting and taking the steps and listening to my breath.

Time: 3.7 miles 38:38, average pace 10:34.

cold #photobomber
cold #photobomber

My fifth run, Leg 25, started at 7am was 5 miles and rated “Moderate.” I was pretty tired and hungry by this time. I really don’t remember too much about this run! What the? I think it was through a residential area, but it I can’t recall. Oh my! #RagnarFog

Time: 5 miles 44:26, average pace 9:01.

My sixth and final run, Leg 31, was 4 miles and considered “Easy.” Yeah! It was hot, I was delirious, but the excitement of us getting closer to the end made this one incredible! It was flat and went through a beautiful residential area, I even stopped to take a few pictures.

Time: 4 Miles 36:00, average pace 8:52.

As seen about half way through Leg 31 #RagnarWB
As seen about half way through Leg 31 #RagnarWB
One mile to go on my final leg #SOHappy #RagnarWB
One mile to go on my final leg #SOHappy #RagnarWB

I was so excited to finish and drink a big, fat, icy cold Cherry Limeade Nuun!


My team mates finished their very difficult legs… you must head over to their sites and read about, the incredible fight that Holly gave on her last run, “What the hill?”, “Ragnar Hill”, the almost horrible ending, when this runner got punched in the face by a very rude guy, and the final leg into the Ragnar finish line.

We crossed the finish line in 30:02:00 and WON the women’s open ultra division!

Not only did we win, we also came in 9th overall in the women’s open 12 member teams. That means we beat teams that had 12 runners on them! We were thrilled! It was the most amazing race!

I have never experienced running as a team. I became so close to my team mates in the short amont of time we spent together. I feel as though we went through a life changing event. It could have been a negative experience with personalities clashing at 12 midnight, but that never happened. We worked together and ran our hearts out.

I know I’ve only known them for a few short weeks, but I can confidently say that I love and would do anything for these 5 women. We are forever bonded by running 30 sleepless hours, over three mountain passes, at altitude with very little food. I would have never thought the simple act of running could open so many doors. Getting out of your comfort zone and trying new things, is the only way to live. If you follow your passion, anything is possible!

A huge thank you to Nuun Hydration who sponsored and hydrated our team, without you none of this would have happened.


Have you ever run a relay? a Ragnar?

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  1. says

    So much fun! And you guys rocked it. I’m also impressed with how consistent you were over all of your legs..great job.

    My friends have fielded Ragnar teams for the DC race for the last two years. I missed the first year due to injury and last year due to schedule…so bummed! They also took first female team both years. This year, we’re skipping it, but I really hope next year will be my year to try it!

  2. says

    You WON!! How awesome is that!! What a fun experience… love the stories and I’m sure you’ll be reliving these memories for a long time. By the way, so smart of your teammate to have fish oil!!

  3. says

    Way to go! Some of my fave bloggers and (some new to me) in one van! :) It’s neat to read the recaps from each of your perspectives. Great times on your runs – I think the run at night would have freaked me out a little – truth be told, it’d be my fastest since I’d be scared a mountain lion would come to eat me if I didn’t high tail it! I’ve never heard of the fish oil trick… something to keep in mind.

    • Lisa says

      Haha! Yes, mountain lions were a big topic of discussion in the wee hours of the night, for some reason, I did not worry about that.. I think it was the cold and quiet, I enjoyed the most! Thank you Rebecca!

  4. says

    I did my first relay this year (Seneca 7) It isn’t a Ragnar one, it’s just a one day thing. I have heard a lot of great things about ragnar relays but none have really fit into my schedule nor have I had the time to make a team for one. But I love reading everyone’s reports of them and I know I will do another relay at some point.

  5. says

    Once again you did an amazing job of capturing our race!! Everyone on our team played an important role in making this experience a life changing experience. You truly did rock it out there…in the words of Holly “Get it Girl”!!

  6. says

    I just found your blog recently and your friends and have been reading the recaps. These races look like so uch fun but so hard at the same time. What a great challenge! And congrats to you guys for winning!!

  7. says

    Congrats on finishing your ultra and winning…WOW! I’m super curious about the fish oil stuff because I have the exact same headache/migraine problem when running. I’m running the Ragnar Northwest Passage on an ultra team so I must find some of these packets immediately!

  8. says

    Congrats to all of you on such an incredible performance! I did Madison to Chi Ragnar 2012 and it was awesome. HOT. But still crazy fun. Still freaking loving those cowboy socks!

  9. says

    So amazing Lisa!!! Congrats on your WIN! Holy cow that is incredible. It sounds like you had a pretty rocking group of women to run with. I love this and you! So glad that you were able to keep the headaches at bay during the event. How are you feeling??

  10. says

    Wow! So, so awesome. What an incredible experience. You ran awesome. I hope you can teach me some relay pointers before Hood to Coast :) I’m also intrigued by those fish oil packets you tried!

  11. says

    I loved your recap, and congrats again to the Nuun team on such a great performance!

    Every year I get recruited to run our local Ragnar Relay with a group of my running friends, but the race is always on a weekend that Virginia Tech is playing at home and we’re going to the game. Someday it will happen! :-)