My Running Slumber Party – MC200

The Sarcastic B's "Before Picture"

Once a year, I do a crazy thing called the MC200 race.  I jump in a van with a bunch of guys from my neighborhood and we run 200 miles from Madison, WI to Montrose Harbour in Chicago.  Why?  Well, lets just say it breaks up the routine of a working Mom and it is the wackiest road race/ slumber party I have ever encountered.

My Team, The Sarcastic B’s (you can guess what B might stand for)  is a group of 12 weekend warriors, and we each run 3 legs over the course of the 36 hour ordeal.  On average, we each run about 18 miles total.  When one runner is on the course, the van leapfrogs ahead to where he might need water or moral support.  At the end of the leg, the baton is passed, and the cycle continues.  The first leg is all fun with high fives and PBs despite the 86 degree heat.  The second leg is in the middle of the night, at which point I am asking myself about the wisdom of running through Milwaukee in the dark with just a little headlamp on my cap.  The third run is the next day and can only be described as torture. 

With two vans of 6 people each, there is a chance for each group to get something to eat at one point and get a little shut eye at St. Raymonds in Racine.  St. Raymonds generously opens the church and it classrooms to the runners and we line up our sleeping bags on the floor and crash.  I mean, I have slept in church before, but never this overtly.  Let me tell you, the snoring in that sanctury is louder than any catholic choir I have ever heard. 

This year there was a new twist.  One of the high-schools on the south side of Milwaukee opened up its locker rooms for showers!  This was completely awesome except that we did not have towels or soap.  Here’s where years of watching McGuiver pays off – we did have a roll of Brawny Lad paper towels, so we divided them up, marched off to the public showers and just made the best of it.  (There was even soap dispensers in the women’s locker room!).  No room for whiners or modesty in this event.

So what’s the allure?  Why do thousands put up with 2 days of port -a-potties, physical discomfort, and sleep deprivation?  Because the Wisconsin countryside is beautiful AND the whole event is hilarious!   The vans all have crazy and sometimes lewd slogans, the camaraderie is contagious, and the whole premise is nuts.   Just this year, my new running BFF, Eric, had a tangle with a raccoon which we have now dubbed “the rabid raccoon”.  Whilst he was putting himself in harm’s way, the rest of us mocked him out by calling him Marlin Perkins of the Wild Kingdom.  So you say its not that funny?  After 28 hrs with no sleep we were rolling on the pavement.  And the story does grow with each re-telling. 

The sarcastic banter, the crazy incidents, sophomoric pranks and inside jokes remind me of the fun my daughter and her friends get from their slumber parties.   And when we Sarcastic Bs are reliving the fun back at the perfunctory soccer game sidelines and train trips downtown, everyone who is not in on the joke rolls their eyes as we go on about it.  We are, of course,  prepared with a sarcastic comment for them and we just sign up for next year.

One Comment

  1. Laura Colella
    Posted September 6, 2010 at 10:18 am | Permalink

    Julia, I was thinking that maybe the Divas need a spot. What a great networking and support we have all been to each other over the years, Would you not highly recommend a support group with a running problem to all Moms. (and definitely running is becoming a problem more and more!!) And of course yeah to you for doing this wonderful run again B!

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