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sounds crazy, we are really just a group of friends who love the adventure and spirit of a group relay. We aren’t competitive and we truly run for fun and for the experience,” Molly said over the overall experience. For Renae Brooks, this was her first Ragnar Race. She started running in March of 2019 and so for her first year she has run a 5k, 10k, a half marathon relay, and then the Tennessee Ragnar. Several of Renae’s friends had run in the California Ragnar race and “hearing how much fun they had, I knew I wanted in.” Renae started running because “it looked like they were having so much fun training for that together.” And train, she did. Training for Ragnar involves increasing your endurance and speed but “there’s no training for traveling in a van with 5 other sweaty women, sleeping very little, fueling your body with Sweet Chex Mix and Hot Tamales, and having to use porta potties in the middle of the night.” However, even this was made fun for Renae as “the comradery and friendships gained from going through this experience together” made it one of her favorite running memories to date. Upon finishing the race, the team met for supper and tried to eat but Renae recalls looking like zombies and just wanting sleep. They had a brunch the next morning and then went on a Segway tour of Nashville and out for some dancing that evening. Renae also recalls finding out that they won. They initially thought they had gotten 2nd place and Renae remembers feeling proud. But later that day they found out they had actually gotten 1st place and Renae recalls all of them being in shock. “This group of friends from South Dakota that got together with the intent just to finish and have a good time actually won this thing!” For Renae, the line-dancing in Nashville after the race and the support and encouragement amongst the teammates made the race. The only downfall for her was the lack of sleep in the van during the race but she sees it as a part of the overall experience. “I will do a few things differently next time but it’s all part of it. The good, the bad, and the porta potties.” For Renae, she is already thinking ahead to her next one which could be St. Paul to Duluth in August. Steph Camp added, “Ragnar is absolutely unlike any experience I have ever done. I love the challenge and that it not only tests your physical endurance but also your mental grit. Doing this race with dear friends is just the icing on the cake.” For Laurie Muller who has previously participated in a lot of races, ranging from a 5k to 30k distances; this was her first relay race. The most miles Laurie has run was a 30k trail race in the Black Hills. “I love running, trying new races, and traveling to new places. I have always thought a Ragnar race sounded like fun, so I was very excited when Molly asked me to join the team!” She agreed that training for a Ragnar is unlike any other race, but she adds that it’s what made it so fun. “I loved the challenge of running three times in a short period of time while living out of a van, not sleeping, and running at all times of the day and night.” Laurie adds that sharing it with teammates who were a mix of friends and some she had just met made the experience even more fun. For Laurie, the best part was getting to know her teammates and talking to runners from all over the country. But also enjoying all the creative van decorations. However, Laurie’s favorite part was her overnight run. She had run a 10.7 mile run for her 2nd leg and started running around midnight. Her run was hilly and cold but very beautiful and peaceful. “After a few miles, I turned my music off and just enjoyed the quiet and my surroundings.” Laurie agreed that the worst part was the porta potties. And agreed that another Ragnar is something she “definitely” wants to do. Annie Lancaster just started races within the last two years although she has always enjoyed running. She wanted to do something to hold herself more accountable and that pushed her. Prior to the Tennessee Ragnar, Annie had run a half marathon, a half marathon relay, and a 5k. The most miles she had run at once was 13.1 during her half vTEAM TWOPACK continued on page 21 Caring for you in Vermillion No matter your health needs, at Sanford Vermillion Clinic we’re committed to providing you with the care you deserve. We offer care for your whole family right here in Vermillion. • Fernando Escobar, MD • Heather Kleeman, DO • Amanda Duxbury, MD • Anastasia Searcy, DO • Mary Jo Olson, MD Call (605) 677-3700 to schedule an appointment. SANFORD VERMILLION CLINIC 20 S. Plum St. 018027-00568 10/19 HERVOICEvJANUARY/FEBRUARY 2020v15

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