Signing up for a Ragnar Trail was something I never had on my list of things to do. Primarily because I have bad knees, but I also lacked the confidence that I could complete such a challenge.
When people started talking about doing one, I immediately came up with many excuses why I couldn't do it.
Still, my personal trainer Kristina encouraged me to see what matters most is to experience the personal journey of training and completing a Ragnar. So, I signed up. I was still skeptical and had no idea what training for this race would entail. I am glad I did.
Training for Ragnar got me to do more of what I love doing, such as hiking different trails and getting outdoors. It definitely helped me become more active, make new friends, and reconnect with old friends as I got back into hiking.
I found that strength and conditioning style training helped with my knees and lower body in general. I noticed marked improvement in my stamina and overall endurance as well. These were hugely important.
However, it was the encouraging and like-minded community at Pro Push that pushed me to keep training and ultimately do the race. I don't think I would have stuck to the training if I wasn't part of such a supportive team.
Experiencing a Ragnar Trail itself is hard to explain. It was exhilarating to participate in. It was fun, exhausting, and bonding - all in a very unique and new way for me. It was an opportunity to be part of a team that brought all types of people together. I found myself along side people with varying running and hiking paces and abilities, yet we all were in it together. It didn't matter how fast you completed the loops. Everybody participated together as a team and played a part in our team's success.
Each time I arrived at the start line I felt the excitement in the air. Each loop was the start of an adventure I had never experienced before.
We had two teams. Both team captains did an outstanding job keeping things organized, on track and fun. It made it easy to relax and enjoy the moment. I loved cheering on my friends and watching them succeed. Everyone had huge smiles on their faces as they completed each loop and passed the "baton" to the next runner.
It was amazing how incredibly supportive my team members were with me and each other. Even more, people from other teams were encouraging on the loops and in camp. The positive energy was real. Everyone cheered, cared, and continued to encourage each other all along the trail.
Personally, I did better than I had anticipated. I completing each loop faster than my estimated time. I surpassed all my practice hike times and did achieve a faster pace - even though the race was at a higher elevation. I know this is because the proper training completed through the guidance of my personal trainers at Pro Push. I was glad my body was capable of much more than I have ever given myself credit for. I am delighted I participated in a Ragnar, which turned out to be one of the most unforgettable experiences. I would do it again in a heartbeat.
Thanks to the best gym in Gilbert, Pro Push Fitness, for helping me through this fantastic journey. Special thanks to my personal trainers Kristina and Chase for convincing me and guiding me through this journey which led to this incredible experience.