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Thursday, April 28, 2011

The California Relay

This is a big weekend, I will be doing the California Relay! I have been really nervous about this and regretted agreeing to it. I didn't understand what I had signed up for in the beginning. I did it just to get know other women at my son's school.

It goes 199 miles from Calistoga to Santa Cruz, 12 women riding in two vans, divided into 36 legs. I am doing Legs 11, 23, 31. We run through the night (eek!) and sleep in the van during downtown. There is no course support, no roads blocked off. We just run on the shoulder and sidewalks.

I can run and a few months ago I did my first half marathon. BUT I haven't really been able to run since then. First I was really sore from the Half, then I thought I'd take a break, then I got sick and had a sinus infection. And then we went to Hawaii vacation. (I even brought my running shoes and went out one day). Excuses, excuses, I know. But here I am with a van full of women expecting me to run 18 miles in 36 hours, and at a reasonable pace.

The other women are "real runners", unlike myself. But they have been really nice and tell me not to worry. I am totally out of my comfort zone on this, but that is how we grow and learn about ourselves... right? Anyways I've stocked up pepper spray, headlamp, reflective tape and a water belt. Antibiotics cured my sinus infection, and it turns out that I have really bad allergies this year. So I''m trying to find the best antihistamine and take care of myself! I only have a few more weeks where I can run, then it gets too hot out and my kids are out of school for the summer and I won't have the time.

The Relay supports Organs R Us, a charity that helps families awaiting organ donation. If you are interested in sponsoring my team, click HERE.

On another note, on vacation it became very clear to me I have added back a few pounds. Bathing suits are so unforgiving. I weighed yesterday for the first time in months, and yep, I was up a whopping 9.5 lbs. Part of it was vacation constipation (that always happens to me!) but the rest was Valentines, Easter and kids sweets that have been around the house. So I'm going to use the month of May to tackles these pounds and not let them get the best of me! Several of my twitter friends and family members have already committed to joining me in a May Weight Loss Challenge. I hope my readers will join in too! It will be fun to do it with others! So think about that this weekend, and if I live through the Relay I'll write more about it on Monday.

UPDATE: This turned out to be SO freaking fun! I had the best time with the women in my van and the other teams. We were all over 40 and there were very few other women our age out there, so that felt great. And I did it! I survived and I did it! My first leg was really difficult, and big hill in Petaluma and then I fell on the night run and scratched up my leg (battle scar!). But I truly loved this! I feel lucky, proud and extremely sore. On, and tired too...

Thanks so much to my readers who donated to this import cause too! I really appreciate you all!


  1. Amber good luck on your run and I hope you met lots of great friends and it is for such a great cause. I know you can do it girl. I am with you on the may challenge. Since my injury and all the meds I am on it has put me up a couple of pounds. June is vacation for me and I would like to be down a few pounds. I will be thinking about you on your run.....hope you dont get to sore.

  2. Good luck with the relay, you can do this, besides what a great example to your kids.
    You'll lose those lbs too!

  3. Good Luck, Amber! I'll be thinking about you this weekend! I'm guessing each leg is around 6 miles or basically equivalent to a 10K (give or take)? Wow...that is IMPRESSIVE!! You can do it ~ just take it one leg at a time!
    I don't know if I've told you, but I started Couch 2 5K at the beginning of March. I am now up to running about 2 miles or 25 minutes at a time (I am SLOW...but at least I am moving ~ LOL!). This is coming from someone who has always HATED exercise and has never stuck w/ anything more than 3 times in a row!! I still don't "love" running...but it is growing on me :-)

    Looking forward to starting the May challenge w/ you next week!!

    Good luck again and be safe & healthy!!

  4. you'll do great Amber! good luck and have a blast!

  5. Hey Amber, I was wondering when that was going to be? I know that you have butterflies right now, but I know you can do it. And I'm sure the weight is just the #2 thing too.
    BTW - Oliver contacted me back and asked for more pics. I sent them, so we will see. :-)
    Take your time on the race and just breath.

  6. Holy Cow DeAnnah! I never thought of it in the way, yikes! Each section is between 4-8 miles and you end up doing 16-18 miles in the 36 hours. Ugh.

    So excited about you doing C25K! Wish we all lived closer together and could go out and run/walk yet.

  7. WOWSERS that's a lot... and I was complaining about doing the Relay for life this Saturday where I will most likely only do 5 miles in 24 hrs... and lets face it... I'm gonna powerwalk those heifers cuz I'm not at the running stage right now. Reading this is motivation however.. I will try to up to 10miles..since I do 5 miles everyday...I need to make a sacrifice. Good luck!!! I will be thinking of you this weekend!

  8. Wow, that race sounds incredible! You will be so proud of yourself at the finish line! And I am also with you and the May weight loss challenge! I am trying to get off the 'last 10 pounds' and I sure need the extra support!

  9. Take lots of pictures of you and your team! It is a once in a lifetime event, unless of course you do it again next year! What a great cause to run for too. I have clicked on the link, so I can help sponsor your team. Run safe, have fun, and once those running shoes get on your feet, and your dressed to run you will certainly go get em!

  10. Love to join you in the May challenge! I keep starting and never make it past Wednesday. So now I have a goal ! Good Luck on your run .

  11. I hope all went well with the Relay. I am looking forward to the May Weight Loss Challenge. I need a jumpstart to get back on track!!!

  12. I would LOVE to join you in the May Weight Loss Challenge. I have been yoyoing(?) on dieting and exercise and I need to get real! I have about 15lbs to loose and I just need to get healthy, get off my behind, and DO it! I'm in but I'm not on twitter, so if you don't mind, I hope you will be posting on here.

  13. Count me in on the May challenge. I need some motivation! Congrats on the run Amber!

  14. Amber, I applaud your courage in the relay and look forward to your next blog. I, also, am not on twitter so I hope you post here as I want to join your May challenge. I was on the original BFC when you were. Then I did the Fast Track, and have gained 10 pounds since Feb when I stopped.