The Best Rest of Your Life – AOR edition

american-odyssey-relayI’ll have a full American Odyssey Relay post within the next few days.  I want to have all the pictures and make a solid effort of putting it together before I post about it.  For those of you who don’t know about AOR, it’s a 200 mile running relay from Gettysburg to Washington, DC.  Teams consist of 12 people or less and each runner runs between 12-20 miles broken down in 3 different runs.  It’s a unique experience that is not for people who dislike leaving their comfort zone to hang with sweaty and disgusting runners.

stay-awake-all-nightWithout going in full detail of the relay, I will say that you get very little sleep throughout the process.  We started at 10:15 on Friday and finished at around 3:30 in the afternoon Saturday. That’s just the running portion.  All in all from start to finish, I was up at 7:30am on Friday and wouldn’t call the odyssey complete until I hit my bed in Philly at midnight on Saturday.  That’s about 40 hours of alive time.  During those 40 hours, actual sleep I got was less than 2 hours.  I was full sleep though for that period of time which was nice compared to half rest.  This isn’t a feeling that I usually get to experience.

I felt pretty good throughout the journey.  My running legs were all something I could handle and I didn’t feel broken at any point.  This isn’t to say I wasn’t tired but I know that being awake and hanging out is what makes the relay more fun.  At around 8:30pm we left College Park to go back to Philly.  Lisa drove which was awesome and I sat in the front seat and provided some company.  I knew I was starting to fade but I hung tough until she dropped me off at 11 pm.  I drove home, completely sober mind you, and had one of the craziest drives of my life.

cat sleep stretchTotal time from Warrington to Philly was 42 minutes with no traffic.  In hindsight, I shouldn’t have driven.  In my mind I just kept telling myself to break the drive down in little chunks.  Just make it to the Blue Route.  Hit 76.  Get to the Green Lane exit.  Left curve to 676.  I was so tired that this was incredibly challenging and when I parked my car I couldn’t believe or remember how I even did it.  When I think back to the drive, it was just like being blacked out.  I’m not one who gets many opportunities to stay awake for 40 hours but I have to write a post about the risks of doing so.  Fortunately I got back safe and after night’s sleep, I feel like a million bucks even though a million bucks is not what it used to be.  I slept for just under 10 hours and it was incredible sleep.  I fell asleep the moment my head hit the pillow and woke up near 10am without a moment interruption.    This gives me all day today and I have quite the agenda.  I’ll try to get an AOR update at the start of the week.  Stay tuned.