2011 So Cal Ragnar Relay Post Race Report

Carb load Thursday night at Jack and Ayelet's townhome, drive up to Oceanside to spend the night at Chris' awesome new home, then drive up to Huntington Beach where the start line of the 2011 So Cal Ragnar Relay was setup. Lasagna, spaghetti, salad, friends...little did we know what we were really getting into. We knew the basics; the route, the timing (via an awesome amazingly programmed Google Spreadsheet), the forecasted weather, the big exchanges and where we'd end up but it would be just the beginning of a great trip. I forgot my Garmin Edge 500 at home but instead just relied on Runkeeper Pro on my iPhone 4. As they say, 2 vans, 12 friends, 36 legs, 200.9 miles. When we reached the start line, the registration area was filled with people from all over. Some dressed costumed in elaborate and amazing themes such as Super Mario Bros and some in just underwear w/ suspenders. Their vans also decorated from front to back with markers, pictures and even props glued to the sides...the Ragnar Relay was definitely something else. I picked up a couple of shirts for memorabilia sake, we loaded up on some Protein Shakes and FRS giveaways, and then as 9:45am approached, we stood around and cheered for Chris as he was slated as runner #1. It was exciting!

For some reason, while recording the start with Qik, it came out blue, but for your viewing pleasure, here it is.

After Chris took off for his first 5 mile leg, we set out and made our way to the next exchange. We didn't know the van route and just did the best we could to find the stop. The weather forecast was calling for a dry and hot day and by the time it was my turn at leg #4, it was excruciating. The temperature had risen to around 85 F and I couldn't have gotten more liquid in my body. My exchange was located at Angel's stadium and running along the aqueduct just proved to be that much hotter.

By the time all of Van #1 was done, we met up at the the first major exchange in Corona where the first runner of Van #2 set out. Did I mention that it was hot and very dry? We were able to snap a team photo right after Ryan came in and before Christina took off. If you take a close look, Ryan (on the far left front crouching down) just championed the 2.7 miles downhill literally taking this photo just seconds afterwards.

We had a great opportunity to head to Lake Elsinore where Chris' aunt took us in, cooked some awesome spaghetti and let use use her house as a base for 4 hours while Van 2 did their six legs. Definitely some good spoiling. I even took a shower and rested quite well. I knew that my next leg was going to take place at night and I have to admit that I was a little apprehensive because I had never run that late before or in the dark at all. To top that off, I was running an unfamiliar path with headlamps, taillight and a vest in the middle of Wildomar / Temecula. Throughout the evening, all I could think about was running with a buddy and I found one! A girl from Salt Lake had told me that she was a 10:00 min / miler and I was game. We started out fast and actually made amazing time averaging just under 9:30 min / mile which was on par for a Personal Record (PR). It was an exciting finish for her and I and I was ecstatic that I had found a great person to run with let alone run some of the best I've ever ran. It was chilly too, but I'll admit that when comparing the heat from the earlier leg, I'd definitely take the cold.

Again, after Van 1 had ran their legs, we set out of Chris' house in Oceanside and had about 2.5 hours of sleep / rest until the next major exchange. It was once again a very awesome opportunity that we had that chance to be so close to a base to recover unlike other teams that only had their vans and sleeping bags. After an amazing second leg, I sought out thinking that I could actually finish strong during my third and final leg of the 2011 So Cal Ragnar Relay.

It started to get a little hot and when we approached the Loma Santa Fe Train Station Exchange, the heat was once again at full force. I started off nice and easy as you can see here:

I wound up walking here and there as I couldn't find that personal pace / high that I needed to maintain. The sun was getting the best of me. I knew that the big incline was going to happen sometime in the last mile or two, but boy, the heat coupled with the El Camino Real hill just took the wind out of my sails. I ended up with a 10:50 min / mile moving average which was definitely the opposite of what I forecasted, but I was still happy with it. My team met me at the beginning of the hill which was a great boost and I finished strong sprinting the last bit. I handed my slap bracelet to Charlette and I was done! What a feeling! She attacked Via de la Valle and took a couple of kills too and Ryan would endure Torrey Pines so in the bigger scheme of things, my hill was on the littler side. Props to those two for killing it!

All in all, it was an amazing experience that I wouldn't mind doing all over. In fact, if you're interested in running this race, hit me up! I'm always down for a challenge!

Here's a picture of that awesome medal up close! It's got some weight to it!


If you aren't aware yet, and you probably aren't, I decided to venture off yet once again ultimately resulting in a split of stories you might find on elijahnicolas.com.  You can find the story by navigating to the first post of the new blog and I would love to invite you read it.  Just to make it even easier, you can find it here. adellelijah: Part 1 of the Softlaunch. Since blogging, podcasting and doing a whole lot of surfing the internet, biking the coast, flying for your friendly skies, I've been in and out of happiness, bewilderment and just 'being.'  Ideas coming and going, never executed well or at all, etc., etc.  But...I do think that I have finally found a medium that will combine what I really seek in life and what I really want to do on my downtime at the random cities and hotels that I end layover-ing.

It's not that I thoroughly enjoy camping in front of a computer nestled away in my hotel room, but sometimes, there is really only so much you can do in a city that you've been to more than 10 times.  Don't get me wrong, I'm not going to world class visitor cities with attractions galore, but for instance, I'll be overnight in Bloomington, Illinois tomorrow night followed by an 18 hour stint in Killeen, Texas!  The hotel pool is nice, but that's about all the excitement there is.  I might have even posted a posterous pic or qik video on how creepy the hotel is in Bloomington with the little lady girl painting haunting my room!  Maybe I'll camp out in the lobby this time, but I'm crossing my fingers that I'll be safe!

So, from now on, I'll definitely be concentrating most of my efforts on the new company / venture, and I want to invite you along for the ride.  I'll still be hanging around here from time to time posting things that aren't aligned with adellelijah.com e.g. my flying stories and such, from everything else....adellelijah.com is where it's at!

Okay, it might have not been that creepy watching it all over again, but seriously, there are worst ones sprinkled throughout the hotel premises!

Qik Videos + Swamis Pics

After two weeks of Atlanta weather, northeast weather, and flying to other cities around midwest plus Canada, I finally made it back home to San Diego. With all the snow, freezing temperatures, rain, sleet and ice, I knew that I was missing something in my life! I've been Qik-ing from my iPhone for a little while now if you haven't noticed and today's video was just so awesome that it needed a separate entry. It captures the beauty of San Diego (actually taken at Swamis) and the gorgeous weather that we have.  If you need the direct links to my Posterous or my Qik Profiles, they are to the right in the Personal Links.  Those profiles are usually easier to update as you can tell.  But I'm still here...still alive on elijahnicolas.com Check out the pictures and Qik Video!

Two Months Later...the Facelift is Complete!

Since the New Year's, I was finally able to pick up my car, meet a new friend named Jacob and take more pretty cool pictures using my Canon S90.  We'll go in chronological order. If you don't remember what I did to my car last November, you can refresh yourself with some "before" video recorded by Qik on my iPhone.  Of course, I posted an "after" video of the finished product because it was just about 2 months since I've driven the beast and I was excited to take delivery!  Summing it up, I got what I wanted on my BMW 5.28iT Sport Wagon; an upgraded BMW E39 M5 Front bumper paired with Xenon Fog lamps as well as updated Angel Eye Headlights w/ clear corners!  It all couldn't have been possible without the awesome help of Todd at Performance Auto Collision (company website / kudzu review) in Alpharetta, Atlanta who kept me up to date with the entire process and prevented Geico from using shady/cheaper third party parts, Umnitza - who provided the parts but I can't say it was without hardship in communication and transaction and of course Manoj who dropped me off to see my finished product.

Check it out the video and the pics!

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Pound FAIL / #FAIL!

Leaving work today, I failed...miserable. I thought that my E39 5.28iT could talk on a pole, but I was rudely awakened by the feint reality. This is of course after the fact. Tomorrow, I'll know more about the costly damage as it ruined / totaled my hood, left-front fender, bumper and headlight.

I'm alright thank God but my pocket is going to be severely drained either directly or monthly via my increase in insurance premium. Stay tuned