Team Name Overall Finish Category/Place Pace Finish Time
153 Vansome 108/165 14-Mixed Open-32/52 8:59 30:04:27
We lost an earring, a finger nail, and 3 teammates along the way BUT ran hard, strong, sometimes fast and survived another relay race.
In 2010 I ran my very first marathon……the Boston Marathon. I ran with a great team and helped raise over $250,000.00 for Mass Eye and Ear. I ran the same 26.2 miles every other person did that day, crossed the same finish line and got the same medal, yet to many in the running world, my victory wasn’t an earned one and I simply bought my way into the marathon and took the EASY route. Easy route?! EASY ROUTE?!? Is there such a thing as an easy route to training for a marathon?? …………………..Yeah, I didn’t think so.
I had never given it much thought, but the moment I became a “charity runner” I became aware of the clear divide between qualifiers and charity runners and it wasn’t just based on speed and time. I encountered several qualifiers that not only looked down on charity runners but were actually upset we were allowed to participate in the Boston Marathon. Upset we “stole spots from those you earned it”. I was in shock that there was so much anger and hostility towards people who accomplished the same goal or finishing 26.2 miles. Yes, I may have done it slower than you, but didn’t we both run it significantly slower than the SAME people that beat us both and won the marathon? Yes, it’s HUGE to qualify, but then again, how many of us get asked why we are running marathons if we don’t stand a chance at WINNING? (It’s all in perception).
The bibs that are given to charity runners do not take away any bibs for qualifiers. The BAA didn’t dip into the qualifying pool to secure these bibs, they simply MADE MORE…..JUST for charity runners.
Charity runners deserve just as much praise as those who have qualified. Who is to say raising $5,000 for a passionate cause is better than running a marathon under 3:10 or vice versa? The two just can’t and shouldn’t be compared, we’re all here to do the same thing people, run 26.2 miles.
So hats off to those who have the talent and determination to qualify and best wishes to ALL that line up at the start for any marathon. It’s an accomplishment for every single person out there and should remain a positive experience for all. Don’t knock those that did it slower than you because I’m pretty sure there is only one person that can say they did it the fastest, and my guess is if your focus is on those “damn charity runners”, it wasn’t you.
And to end with the words of a fellow blogger that summed it up much better and less rant-y than me……
“Some people get accepted into fine universities solely on the strength of their previous academic achievements. Others get in on the basis of their athletic prowess. And some are admitted because their parents and grandparents attended the university and they get a legacy boost. Regardless of how they get in, if they complete the requirements for graduation, they all get the same diploma. No asterisk. I don’t care how somebody gets to run in the Boston Marathon. Once they’ve completed the race, they get their medal and whatever bragging rights come with it. No asterisk.”
Good day. God speed. Good run.
Concrete Jungle where dreams are maaaaaaade oooooooooohhhhhh…….
Sunday, March 18, 2012 I took on the New York City Half Marathon and it was BY FAR my favorite half marathon course to date and I already cannot wait to return next year (and drag most if not all of Team Vansome with me!!).
It was an absolutely PERFECT day for a run, cool calm weather and the sun did us a favor and stayed hidden away until an hour or so after the race. We got into our corrals around 7 AM, and I just so happened to be in the Purple Corral (thanks V!).
The first 6 miles were a loop around Central Park. It took me over 20 minutes to actually get started, there were THAT many runners. I’ve always wanted to run through Central Park and it did not disappoint. After Mile 4 I found myself thinking about how awesome it would be to live in NYC just for the sole purpose of running that every day. Amazing.
After mile 6 we hit a turn and burst out into Times Square. The crowd was electric and I couldn’t help but pick up my pace and I’m sure the smile on my face grew about twice as wide.
I think I ran the entire part of this course laughing and waving to everyone, as pictured below.
After that, we turned right on 42nd Street and headed onto the West Side Highway, which is completely flat for the last few miles of the race. We ran a brief stretch through the Battery Park Underpass to FDR Drive, and then headed back out into the sunlight for the finish at the seaport. I loved how the last 300 meters or so were around a slight curve so you could see the finish, take off, and finish strong.
I LOVED every second of this 13.1. I didn’t train properly (*cough cough* at all) so it wasn’t an ideal pace and not my best race BUT it was still one of my favorite runs and really helped recommit me to running. It felt good to be back out there and I’m ready to buckle down, train hard, and kick some serious ass in my upcoming races and events. Who’s with me?!?!
you should’ve been a part of.
I came to win, to fight, to conquer, to thrive
I came to win, to survive, to prosper, to rise
To fly, to fly
I wish today it will rain all day
Maybe that will kinda make the pain go away
Trying to forgive you for abandoning me
Praying but I think I’m still an angel away
RIP Vance P. Ferratusco April 5, 1981 - January 27, 2011
I am SO excited for 2012. TOO EXCITED to even be able to really capture it with words. There are so many amazing things planned……such as:
The New York City Half Marathon!!
Reach the Beach with Team Vansome!!
Oh yeah and that whole WEDDING thing!!!!
And that’s just the tip of the iceberg!
As I get ready for what is definitely going to be one of the best years of my life (no pressure Adam!) I was sitting here today thinking about what a trip 2011 was. It’s absolutely amazing how many things can happen in one year and how much your life can change. In 2011 I loved, lost, cried, laughed, sang, danced, ran and everything in between. It’s been real 2011…..you’ve taught me a lot….I’m sad to see you go but my excitement for 2012 washes that sadness away.
To a Happy Healthy Amazing 2012…….CHEERS!!
I have never agreed more with an article and been able to say “that’s EXACTLY what we said!!”. Perfectly captures what it’s like to do a relay and why we keep coming back for more. I thought I was already pumped for our next one in May 2012 but now I want to run tomorrow!! An absolute must read for anyone who’s ever done a relay, wants to do a relay, or wonders what the hell is wrong with those people that do relays.
By Shandi Kano
WESTPORT, Mass. — The concept of an overnight relay race seems easy enough: 200 miles to run, a team of your friends and no sleep ‘til everyone has run with the baton three times and you reach the finish line together. It’s just a long relay, right?
I found that expectations only ever live up to their name when you really have none at all.
This one in particular.
The New Balance Reach the Beach Relay Race was my third relay in a long lineup to come. More than 200 teams were there to race from Wachusett, Mass., to the beaches of Westport, Mass. I remember my first relay and the runner’s high I had for weeks afterward. This past weekend, our team was 10 runners, one van, and it was set to storm. Not your ideal situation. All those expectations aside though, it came back to the same game plan as any other relay — the only way we were going to get through this was just one step at a time and taking everything as it came.
Here are some accounts by the ESPN team:
Rob Booth: “To race is one thing. To ‘Reach the Beach’ is completely different. After 10 years of running in high school and college and three marathons, I’ve found that nothing challenges a runner more mentally and physically than a distance relay. My fellow runners had pounded pavement all day, and as the sun began to set I strapped my headlamp and vest on and was off on my first leg, six miles hard. The night was passing and barely anyone was sleeping. I got just 15 minutes of sleep and was off to my next leg. Eight miles at 4 a.m., and the fog was thick. For the next 45 minutes, I could only see 5 feet in front of me. My legs ached, feeling 10 pounds heavier than they began. Just as I felt I couldn’t run any further, the sun peaked over the horizon and began to burn away the same fog. I didn’t have much left in the tank following the combined 14 miles, but I knew my last leg would be the biggest challenge. The beach was fast approaching Saturday morning, and nearly 13 miles lie in front of me to finish my part of the relay. The hot temperatures and previous fatigue took its toll, not to mention the spicy chicken nuggets we had to scarf down while trying to support our teammates in the middle of the night. The last seven miles is, in my eyes, what sets this type of event apart from a traditional race. As I stumbled through the streets of Massachusetts, my teammates, some friends and some strangers stopped every mile to offer me water, aid, banana chocolate chip muffins and most of all, positivity. There is not really a feeling better than giving your all for your teammates and having that reciprocated back in their running efforts and support. Many people say that running isn’t a team sport, but any runner of Reach the Beach would definitely disagree.”
Steve Guyot: “I remember the first time I tried sushi, I couldn’t believe I had gone so long without trying something so delicious. I was so excited to tell my friends so that they could enjoy it with me. But alas, my news was met with a look of disgust. The only words they heard come out of my mouth were ‘raw fish.’ That’s pretty much the same reaction I get when I tell them I’m going to run in a relay race, 200 miles in a 24-hour period. Yeah, they just don’t get it. Their bewilderment grows when I add that I’ll be running on no sleep, stuck in a van with nine other people, four of which I hardly know or have never met before, with no chance of winning anything. Oh, and I paid $90 to do it. The first words out of their mouth are typically, ‘What’s wrong with you?’ If you’re not a runner, I wouldn’t expect you to understand. In fact, if you said you did, I would ask you the same question. But imagine doing what you love for an entire day, 24 hours with no distractions and you could bring along a big group of friends. That raw fish is starting to sound pretty good now, isn’t it?”
Melanie LeSueur: “As I passed the baton to our next runner after completing my third and final leg, I yelled to our team captain, ‘I am never running again.’ She nicely stated, ‘You said that seven months ago after the last relay.’ Why do I pay money to torture myself in these relays? Well, it’s because they are so much fun. There is nothing as cool as meeting a bunch of people who enjoy the same thing you do, spending 36 hours in a smelly car and cheering each other on as you drive through a beautiful course that ends on a beach. My first leg was a torturous six miles uphill. The second, a cool run through thick fog in the middle of the night. The third, an easy down-hill run midmorning. I’m sure I’ll ask myself, ‘Why?’ next time I’m here, but that’s kind of the point. I’ll be back for more.”
Dustin Keller: “It started with a simple question: ‘Would you like to run in a relay race this weekend?’ Three days later, enter a few friends, a bunch of new faces and Wachusett Mountain in Massachusetts. About 29 hours and 200 miles later, barely able to lift my legs anymore, I cross the finish line with my team on the beaches of Westport. Though not much longer than a day, it was one of the few times in my life where a few minutes felt like an eternity. Whether it was lack of sleep, attempting an existence on Powerade and old Wendy’s or just the grueling hum and rattle of 200 miles of road passing us by, each moment seemed to last forever. I was doing this with no training; there was a point at which I thought I was finished and still had over two miles to go — and, of course, a run at 6 a.m. on barely any sleep, and I’m not a morning person. All things considered, though, I can’t describe my experience any better than with a quote from one of my favorite songs at the moment: ‘Cause everybody dies, but not everybody lives.’”
Jodie St. John: “To say I don’t really enjoy running would be an understatement. But Shandi was persistent, and after saying no about 10 more times I finally agreed to join the team. I was chosen to start things off and run the first six miles. This seemed reasonable enough until I found out the race started at the bottom of a ski hill and I had to run to the top. About a mile into the run I was gasping for air and remembered thinking two things: 1) What have I gotten myself into, and 2) how much would it cost to take a cab back to Hartford? Fortunately, I survived the ski hill as well as the rest of the 14 miles I had to run. What was memorable to me was running through the night. Normally running at 1 a.m. with nothing but a flashlight strapped to my head would not be my idea of a good time, but it was actually pretty fun.”
Dan Benshoff: ” I was pretty nervous to run this relay. It wasn’t my first and I knew what to expect — no sleep, crappy food, uncomfortable living conditions for the next 30-some-odd hours. That’s not why I was nervous, though. The past six months I’ve working to overcome a string of running injuries and had just been given the go-ahead by my physical therapist to start running again. But I’m certain that this relay is not what he meant by ‘taking it easy’ and ‘building up slowly.’ Whatever. I didn’t want to let my teammates down, and I was really looking forward to running that leg that comes at some ridiculous hour in the night. I had never really enjoyed running until I found myself alone on some backwoods road at 3 a.m. under a full moon and no light to be bothered by for miles around. It was that leg amidst the cows and trees of a rural area that I didn’t want to miss out on in this race, and it didn’t disappoint.”
Jen Howard: “200 miles, nine other people, one van, 24 hours. To most, it may seem like torment. For me, a time to revel. It starts with endorphins like any other race — excitement, the unknown, the nerves. Your first leg rewards you with the feeling of accomplishment, yet you still have two more to go. Then it starts. You don’t eat normal foods, your sleeping pattern is quickly altered, you’re staying awake to support your runners through the wee hours [of the morning], you’re exhausted, malnourished, and before you know it, it’s time to run again. The van becomes a disaster zone; you can’t find anything, but you find humor in almost everything, knowing that you’re all in this together. It finally comes, your last leg. You’re half excited to be done with running but the other half is sorry that it’s ending. As the last runner nears the finish, the whole team crosses together, a nod to the bond that’s been formed. You’re left with a feeling of accomplishment, ridiculousness, pride and amazed that the last 36 hours wasn’t really a week’s time. And if you’re anything like me, you’re ready to do it all over again.”
Will Carson: “I like how the course started off running up a ski slope and finished on the beach with 185 miles of Mass. back roads in between. We had a great team and great support out on the course. Running with no sleep is a big challenge that you don’t really get in normal races. It’s hard to believe it only took us 29 hours to finish the relay. It felt more like three days due to lack of sleep. We probably had one of the strangest mix of runners in the relay on our team; everything from serious former college athletes to non-runners. I think that added something to the team dynamic. After 40 hours in a van together you really get to know people, and that’s half the fun of a relay. A lot of the relay is a blur, but one of the best memories was the gutsy performance by Dustin Keller to get us to the finish line at the end.”
Matt Restivo: “This was going to be my fourth relay race, second in as many weekends, so I thought I knew what to expect. I didn’t. I thought my legs could handle a slight increase in mileage from one weekend to the next, no problem. But pulling my groin the morning before the race didn’t help. My first two legs — both about 7.5 miles — I felt surprisingly good as new, running my usual 7:45-8:00 minute pace. However, my third leg was the struggle. My groin was really preventing me from running the way I can. But running isn’t the only reason I do these relays. They are exciting and fun for so many different reasons, and as crazy as it sounds I love being ‘stuck’ in a van with people for 24-plus hours. In addition to the stench, the van is home to hilarious moments: Driving alongside other runners blasting the soundtrack from the movie ‘Inception,’ trying to match their intensity or the memories that followed after stepping in dog poo and having to shower in Febreze.”
In the end, the only expectation I think any of us had was that no matter what, we’d work together, fight together and push each other until we reached the beach. I’m proud to say that’s what we did. We placed 64th overall in a time of 28 hours, 54 minutes, 32 seconds.
Much like running through thick fog in the middle of the night, there’s one thing running teaches us about life — standing still is never going to change your view.
This made me laugh and I wanted to share:
So, I’m really thankful that I’m getting married and such, but it’s not all sunshiny love times. There are annoying things about weddings and I’m here to tell it like it is. Besides, growing up with Dawson’s Creek taught me that it’s okay to complain if your heart is in the right place. So, without further ado, here is my Top 10 list of things I hate about weddings:
1. Hair style dilemmas. Who can make curls stay in for ten hours? I don’t think even Gwyneth can do that.
2. Why does a Facebook invitation not suffice? People lose the real deal invites and look stuff up on the website anyway.
3. Wedding website templates. Can we move these into 2011? Maybe HelloGiggles should get in on this.
4. Even though we’re buying you appetizers, cocktails, dinner and dessert, we still owe you a favor. Does that elaborately wrapped truffle really make or break the night?
5. Cake cutting fees ($3/slice), corkage fees ($18/bottle), champagne pouring fees ($5/glass), any kind of fee.
6. Fondant. Or as I call it, devil cake ruiner.
7. The need to pretend to prefer fancy wine and beer. I know you all will be drinking Coors Light at the hotel bar after party.
8. Having to cross friends off the guest list because weddings are so expensive (I would put a sad face here if I wasn’t trying to progress beyond emoticons).
9. In what other situation would the people being celebrated pay for everything? If it was my birthday, you would buy me drinks.
10. The weird compulsion to invite Kathleen from Girl Scouts because that friendship really symbolizes fourth grade for me.
Thanks for listening, I promise there will be a positive top ten list coming soon, but for now, let’s be more Joey and less Dawson.
are my wedding colors!!
Or at least that’s what I’m going to say if you ask me.
Why can’t weddings just be big surprises?! Why does every stranger on the street have to know your “color scheme” and what color charger plate you’re going to have (no idea what a charger plate even was until I got engaged). Who doesn’t love a good surprise? So why are people so intent on knowing every little detail of a person’s wedding day?
I’ve learned the more details you offer up, the more opinions you’re going to get, and the less happy you’re going to be when you realize there is no pleasing everyone.
To my fellow brides out there, remember, it’s YOUR DAY! Take each person’s opinion with a grain of salt, what really matters is that YOU are happy with all the details and that you create the type of day you want to create with your hubby to be. To those that don’t like some of your ideas, here’s an idea for them, go get married and plan your own wedding! or maybe they already had THEIR day. How about everyone just sit back, show up, and enjoy celebrating a very special day!! Sounds like a plan to me!
Now back to coming up with fake AWFUL ideas to spring on my future mother in law……
***DISCLAIMER*** If I ASK you for your opinion, I want it! Good, bad, ugly….it’s those that are being offered up without the asking that prompted this blog and it is not targeted at one person. (there are several of you out there! haha juuuust kidding!)
Green Monster, early 2000s, which is why there are no seats up there yet!
Mario Kart! and yes I threw green turtle shells at people all night long.
Rabbit in a hat also worn for the annual Witch City 5K in Salem.
Oompas. Huge hit. (Resulted in lots of free drinks! take that slu-y costumes!)
Makes less sense when I’m standing alone BUT creepy angry tree from the Wizard of Oz. Remember them?
Toy Soldiers from Toy Story who just happened upon a random tank in the middle of a playground. Bonus.
What’s everyone being this year?!