Lions, and Tigers, and Flaming Bunnies … Oh My!

Ah, the end of May always brings out the craziest event in northern Nevada… the Reno Tahoe Odyssey! The grand 178 mile running race that leaves from Reno, arcs through a substantial portion of Tahoe, blasts through Carson and Virginia City, and ends up in my backyard. Truly, the finish line is 300 feet away from my screen door.

250 teams filled with a dozen insane, strangely clad athletes, some who are fast and speedy and others who are just, well, present. It is truly one of the greatest teambuilding events I’ve ever participated in and now I’m going on my third year. There is something great about circling one of the most beautiful places on the planet packed into a van with your sweating, stinky, incredibly tired teammates who trade off on runs that vary in length from 5k to 7 miles with degrees of difficult ranging from mild to extreme!

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This year, our team is the Flaming Bunnies of Doom. For all of you other RTO teams out there, beware! Death awaits you with nasty, pointy teeth! I think this event is particularly fun for me because as a triathlete, I don’t really get to race for “fun.” As I’ve told many times before, I just have an incredibly difficult time going for a swim at the lake for fun. I just can’t do it. And so this event gives me a chance to let loose and just enjoy my teammates and the experience, and not focus so much on a finishing time or breaking records…

The Odyssey is about pushing limits, bonding with old (or new) friends, and encouraging each other as the delusions and lack of sleep wear you down. It’s about enjoying beautiful scenery while promoting active living, and frankly, it’s just a blast. There’s nothing quite like passing out on Saturday afternoon after being in a van 27, 28, even 29 hours. It’s exhausting and a riot all combined into one!

Moving on to my other random thought of the day, I haven’t been very good about keeping up with my blog lately, and it’s not for lack of inspiration, or at least I hope not. Perhaps my biweekly blogging is coming to an end for reasons outside my control. Shockingly, I’d forgotten how much work it takes to come up with articles that people enjoy reading. I could blabber on for hours on end but if it isn’t worthwhile and engaging then why bother?  IRONMAN is taking its fair share of my time in addition to many, many other responsibilities, I’m swamped. I hope that this time in the RTO will help me reground myself and figure out my baseline all over. I have four months until IRONMAN Tahoe so it is time for me to get it together… I promised myself I would have a better plan for maintaining my sanity by June 1. Wishful thinking perhaps.

Ever since St. George, I’ve been a bit disoriented. Any 70 mile race will take it out of you but pile on an insane increase in work responsibilities, heat stroke, plus an ill-timed cold and you’ve got yourself a recipe for disaster. I’m finally reestablishing myself and my routine, and hope to use the holiday weekend (finally right!?) and the RTO to get back onto my A game.

Since it took me forever to get to this point, the takeaway for today is this… Explore new opportunities. Always dive in head first, especially into the unknown. Embrace life to fullest. Stay loyal to yourself and those around you. Listen to yourself – you may be pleasantly surprised how much you can figure out when it’s quiet.

Your soul will thank you.

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