Nuun Hood to Coast in Photos

Post-Hood to Coast mortem is unlike any post-race depression I’ve felt before. It’s a strange concept, post-race depression. You’d think after working so hard over many months for a race, you’d actually be happy for it to be over. This is not the case with Hood to Coast. And this is especially not the case when you’re running with Team Nuun. I spent five days with 36 women (and six fearless men who drove us around) and I never wanted it to end.

The friendships I made over the five days in the PNW will for sure last a lifetime. At the risk of being cliché and sounding like a college student who just got back from studying abroad, I know the memories we made along the nearly 200 miles of the Hood to Coast course reignited not only my passion for running but my faith in the strength of the running community.

While I’m still deep in the throws of my Hood to Coast hangover, I wanted to do a very quick post to thank Nuun for the incredibly life-changing experience I had this past weekend. Thank you to Mason, CEO and President of Nuun, for creating such an incredible experience for all of us and teaching us more about Nuun and your company’s dedication to all runners. Thank you to Megan for organizing all of us and making sure we still had fun along the way! Thank you to all of our van drivers, especially Jeantel, for putting up with our stink and getting us where we needed to be.

And a special thank you to my Team Watermelon Van 1 teammates- Sarah, Mallory, Kara, Catey, and Megan– you all truly made this experience memorable and if I don’t take anything else away from this experience I’ll always have: What would Ke$ha do? :)

I will have a full race report to come very soon this week but to start, here is a photo recap of the week!

Arrival

We arrived (slightly disheveled) to the PNW, notice the flipped over backpack strap. (Photo credit: Megan from megrunnergirl.com)

Pikes Place

We explored Seattle, namely Pike’s Place Market and the original Starbuck (cha-ching!) because runners love coffee.

Bowling

We bowled, a.k.a. cross-trained.

Oiselle visit

We visited Oiselle, and flew. (Photo credit: Sally Bergesen from Oiselle)

Duck Boats

We quacked our way through Seattle on Duck Boats. Quack, quack! (Photo credit: Jesica from runladylike.com)

Van Decoration 2

We decorated our vans with highly appropriate sayings like “Spit Don’t Swallow” with Team Watermelon. (Photo credit: Megan Fay)

Van departure

We woke up very early, packed, and embarked on our journey to Timberline Lodge at the summit of Mt. Hood. (Photo credit: Lindsay from twistedrunning.com)

Mt. Hood Summit

We reached the top of Mt. Hood. So beautiful!

Tattoos

We got (Nuun) tat, tat, tatted up in our highly efficient tattoo train line. (Photo credit: Megan Fay)

Start Line

We began our 198-mile journey…

Check back for a full recap later on this week when I’ve finally processed the entire experience!

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Hood to Coast Van Pump Up Playlist

logoWith Hood to Coast now less than a week away I thought, what better way to get excited for “the mother of all relays” than to make a mother of all relay vans pump up playlist? Am I right?

Why am I making a van playlist instead of a regular running playlist? The answer is multi-faceted.

  1. While I do really love running with music (as much as my coworkers may make fun of me) running with headphones during Hood to Coast is prohibited and will result in an automatic DQ for the entire team. No bueno.
  2. When it comes down to it, we’re going to be spending the majority of our time in that crazy van. Might as well keep ourselves entertained with some good tunes.
  3. Raise team morale!

This playlist is a little eclectic beginning with some of my hippie mountain music, moving into some hardcore EDM and finishing with a little beachy country. But it’s all part of the plan! We’ll begin our journey up on Mt. Hood (mountain music), then we’ll be running down the mountain and onto the roads in the middle of the night (EDM pump up, bass dropping music) and then we hit the beach for a party (country!). It makes sense in my head at least. Enjoy!

Hood to Coast Van Playlist

The Mountain– Trevor Hall

Fallin’– Braddigan

Drive All Night– NEEDTOBREATHE

Backwoods Company– The Wild Feathers

The Night Out– Martin Solveig

Tongue Tied– GROUPLOVE

Wake Me Up– Avicii

Midnight City– M83

Pursuit of Happiness– Kid Cuddi ft. MGMT

C’mon– Tiesto

Safe and Sound– Capital Cities

Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites– Skrillex

Sweet Nothing– Calvin Harris ft. Florence Welch

We Can’t Stop– Miley Cyrus

Memories– David Guetta

Daylight– Matt & Kim

Shore Thing– Luke Bryan (This one is super random but I love this song)

Any other song suggestions? Let me know below!

Hood to Coast in T-Minus Two Weeks

We be running around the mountain, here Nuun comes! (source: Wikipedia)

We be running around the mountain, here Nuun comes! (source: Wikipedia)

Holy jeez, in two weeks I’m going to be running (stumbling? falling?) down Mt. Hood in Oregon with a team of 24 ladies, on a quest for the ultimate beach party that awaits us in Seaside, OR. That’s the point of Hood to Coast, right, the beach party?

Just kidding! But seriously I can’t believe Hood to Coast is almost upon us. It feels like yesterday when I got the news that I was picked to run on Nuun’s team but alas, the summer has flown by at the speed of light, and race day is nearly upon us.

I’ve been so focused on training for the Marine Corps Marathon this summer, and documenting it on this here bloggy, that I’ve neglected to talk about HTC. For shame! Well, this week I finally had the opportunity to assess where I am with my operation-get-speedy and examine my legs of the “mother of all relays.”

Operation-Get-Speedy

First, operation-get-speedy is moving along and I am, in fact, getting quite speedy (in my book). Throughout the summer I’ve focused on staying consistent with speed workouts- mostly track workouts, tempos, and progression runs- as well as upping my mileage quite a bit from what I was doing for Big Sur. I’m five weeks into MCM training and I’ve already hit 37 miles/week which was my second highest mileage week for Big Sur. So, there’s that.

I’ve also noticed significant improvements in my interval splits (mostly 400s and 800s) simply because I’ve been doing them more often. My progression runs, a personal favorite, have been very good too with each mile decreasing evenly to come to a negative split for the total run.

But what’s even more amazing is my “easy/comfortable” pace is getting much faster. Last week I did a 3-mile shakeout run the day after my 13-mile (hilly) long run and my paces were incredible:

Mile 1- 8:46/mile

Mile 2- 8:13/mile

Mile 3- 7:45/mile

I think the true goal of my whole operation-get-speedy plan was to improve my overall fitness and lower my paces for regular, everyday runs. And to get faster for Team Watermelon!

HTC Leg Four Whoop Whoop!

Which brings my to my Hood to Coast leg: I will be runner four on Nuun’s Team Watermelon running a total of 15.16 miles out of our 198 mile run. I’ll admit, I have one of the “easier” legs but many of the women on my team have been running for much longer than I have so I’m fine being the token beginner.

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The first portion of my leg is the longest mileage run coming in at 7.18 miles and it is completely downhill. I’m still not sure what time of day I’ll be running it either but that will definitely play into the difficulty.

Leg four will be my first leg.

Leg four will be my first leg.

My second leg is shorter, just 3.78 miles and it’s relatively flat and described to be on gently rolling terrain on the should of Highway 30.

Leg 16, easy peasy

Leg 16, easy peasy

My final leg is also another short one totaling 4.20 miles and is described as a gradual uphill climb on paved road.

Leg 28 and I'm done!

Leg 28 and I’m done!

After those legs (and in between) you can be sure I’ll by cowbelling my little heart out for my teammates while chugging Nuun and pounding Picky Bars like there’s no tomorrow. Oh, and resting, I’ll try to do some of that too.

This will be my very first relay and I’m excited/scared/stoked to find out what lies ahead in the 198 miles from Mt. Hood to the Pacific Ocean. I know one thing for sure, it ends with a party and beer, so I’m in!

Have you ever run Hood to Coast or another relay? If so, what do I need to know?

I’m Running Hood to Coast with Nuun!

The past few weeks have been such a whirlwind with work, Big Sur and all the traveling in between that I never got the chance to properly announce that I’m running Hood to Coast this August with Nuun! (Jumps up and down screaming yayyy!!)

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Hold up a second, you don’t know what Hood to Coast is? Well let me fill you in. As Nuun writes on their own blog, Hood to Coast is the “mother of all relays.” This 200-mile long relay has runners start at the Timberline Lodge on Mt. Hood and then, over the course of 36 different legs (each runner runs three legs) you finish on the sandy shores of the Pacific in Seaside, Oregon. Pretty epic, no doubt.

The best part of running Hood to Coast is the team aspect, or so I hear. And, according to friends who ran Hood to Coast with Nuun last year, the Nuun team is by far the best one out on the course (I’m not biased at all….). But seriously, I, along with 20 other women runners, will make up the Nuun team and take on Mt. Hood and have a lot of fun along the way.

Many thanks to Nuun for picking me to join their team, I couldn’t be more excited to run hydrated for an absurd amount of miles with these lovely ladies! Check out the rest of the team!

  • Kimberly – Healthy Strides
  • Jolene – Journey of a Canuck Mom on the Run
  • Megan – Meg Runner Girl
  • Lisa – Run Wiki
  • Mallory – Run Eat Run Eat
  • Leslie – Triathlete Treats
  • Holly – Leaps of Faith
  • Kara – Welcome to Karadise
  • Jesica – runladylike
  • Catey – Random Thoughts from the Zoo
  • Lisa – Lisa Runs for Cupcakes
  • Kristen – Defy Your Limitations
  • Sarah – Run Far Girl
  • Meghan – Shoe Stories
  • Devon – Dev on Running
  • Karen – Reason to Play
  • Andrea – the MF Dre
  • Jenny – We Wander and Ponder
  • Lindsay – Twisted Running

Have you ever run a relay? Any words of wisdom for Team Nuun?