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Introducing “Me So Thorny!”

In February 2012, team Me So Thorny, ran from Wickenburg, AZ, through the desert and over a few hills, around the Phoenix metro area, before crossing the finish line of the Del Sol Ragnar Relay in Tempe, AZ. Strangers at the start but friends at the finish, this zany group could be seen wearing shirts and Bondi Bands with the cactus (not pickle) shown below. We also won Ragnar batons in the “Light up the night” contest!

Here’s a brief introduction to the team:

Van 1

Runner 1) Amy (sorry, no bio)

Runner 2) Cindy is thrilled to be in Ragnar Del Sol for her second year in a row. She’s a stay at home mom to three wonderful kids, Ryan (6 years), Avery (3 years), and Josh (33 years). In her former life, she was a pediatric nurse. She worked many graveyard shifts 7pm-7am, and is a night owl, so we may find that side of her to be a little beastly when we’re trying to catch some Zzz’s. Speaking of beastly, we’ve heard she can be a little rough around the edges without make-up but that’s nothing a little facepaint can’t cure.

Currently, Cindy is a part-time substitute school nurse. If you tell her your tummy hurts, she may give you some Saltines and tell you to man up. The good news is she really cannot be grossed out by vomit, piss, body funk, stinky feet, boogers or poo. Cindy realizes that Ragnar is not for the weak stomached! Ragnar is for the tough ironclad stomachs of men and (wooo)men! We’re confident she’ll make our team proud. Quite frankly, she frightens us just a little bit, but we figure we only have to put up with her for about 30 hours.

Runner 3) Keith is 34 and married with 6 kids. This is his 3rd Ragnar, and he is registered for 6 Ragnars in 2012 (Arizona, SoCal, Colorado, Wasatch Back, Napa Valley and Las Vegas) – and he only started running 2 years ago! He has a love for Crossfit, and is competing in the Crossfit open right now with hopes of making it to sectionals. In between all of that, this Tasmanian Devil is also buying a house, switching jobs and starting his Master’s Degree. We suspect we’ll be left in his dust.

JanaRunner 4) Jana is the mother of two beautiful and smart girls and a registered nurse from southern Alabama. She was born and raised in Germany, where she was a member of her high school track and field team and the fencing team. Fast forward 20 years, one day she found herself being out of breath just walking down to the mailbox. She started walking and then running again about 2 1/2 years ago. Since then she has participated in four half marathons and several other middle distance events, consistently improving her time. Ragnar Del Sol will be her third Ragnar Relay. She enjoys the physical challenge, the solitude of being one with nature during her runs, the camaraderie with her team, and the quirky, fun atmosphere of the event.

Jana has never been to Arizona, and she is doing Ragnar Del Sol as a destination race. She thought running through the desert sounded like a good idea, but she didn’t count on being in the same van as Cindy.

Runner 5) Johnny is from Guayaquil, Ecuador. He is 51 years old and has been living in the U.S. since 2001. Although he can understand English when he reads it, he has difficulties understanding it during conversation – challenging Coach Brian to remember his high school Spanish lessons throughout the race. Johnny is Assistant Manager at “99 cents Only”, and he’s worked for them as long as he’s been living in the United States. In 2006, Johnny suffered a torn ligament in his left knee that keeps him from playing soccer. After a break, wanting to practice some sport, he encouraged myself to run in 2009 and competed in the half marathon in Arizona. From there he participated in two more half marathons and 12 other shorter distances. This will be his first overnight cross country relay.

Runner 6) Stephanie is a wildlife biologist, and we’ll count on her expertise to keep Cindy under control. She lives in Las Vegas with Steve, her husband of 17 years; Q, her Australian Kelpie and running partner; Ginger and Delilah, her no good, but extremely cute Chihuahuas, and a cat named T. Stephanie likes to run half marathons and relay events to keep in shape, travel and meet new people. At least, that’s the politically correct answer, isn’t it? Really, she just wants an excuse to wear cute running skorts and eat salt & vinegar potato chips.

Van #1 Support staff – Raffi Darrow, Editor of

Van 2

JessRunner 7) Jessica loves to run. It began in elementary school on the school track team which eventually lead to college at the University of Washington on the Women’s Track team running the 100, 400, 4×100 and 4×400 meter relays. After college she went back to her other passion, soccer, until a knee injury side-lined her from the sport. After having children Jessica realized she needed to figure out what she could do to stay in shape since soccer was out of the question. She started running local 5k’s and soon became addicted to distance running. 5k’s lead to 10k’s which lead to ½ marathons. She is currently training for her first full marathon! She’s come a long way from being a sprinter, but it has become a passion – a huge part of her life! Jessica uses running to clear her mind, to relieve stress and to stay healthy and happy. She ran her first Ragnar last year in the 2011 Del Sol race. Like most Ragnar runners, she became addicted and captained her own team for the NW Passage Relay. She is continuing the tradition and doing them both again in 2012!

Jessica is a wife, mother of 2, and has taught high school biology for over 10 years. She recently moved to Arizona from Washington State with her family to escape the rain! They haven’t seen rain since. Jessica would like to thank her husband, Erick, and her children, Anders and Ava, for always supporting her in her running addiction!

Runner 8) Crystal is from Seattle and loves the outdoors. She is a “freshly-minted” Arizona attorney, and is thrilled to have her life back after law school. She just recently got back into running, and ran her first half marathon in January. Throughout the race our hands were sticky from the tangelos her parents provided.

Runner 9) Jason (36) is a married (Jessica) father of a 3 year old daughter (Presley) who is the center of his universe. He started running 2 years ago to get back into shape for soccer and to not be the fat dad on the La-Z-Boy in 10 years, after a 14 year hiatus from most forms of physical activity. Until he discovered Ragnar with some help from David (Runner 12), running was always a solitary endeavor and a means to an end. Since running his first Ragnar in August of 2010 at the Great River, he has found that there can be some joy in running. He has completed 4 Ragnars and one half-marathon. He got 4 hours of sleep at his last Ragnar which matched his total from the first 3. Does this mean he’s getting soft? In real life he has worked for Sherwin-Williams for the last 13 years, and cherishes his time with family and friends.

Runner 10) As an avid distance runner with a self-imposed sense of fashion off the track, Liz just couldn’t understand how her friends always look like they are coming out of a magazine even after running 15 plus miles – always looking pretty with their hair in place totally smooth and dry, while she – after running only half a mile – fights really hard to suppress her tangled locks mutation, essentially looking like she has come out of a swimming pool and gotten sucked up and spit out by a twister. Always feeling like a mutant alongside friends, Liz has found her place with Ragnarians… where racing for 24 hours while sleeping in a van turns out to be the great equalizer of the fashionistas of distance running. At Ragnar, tangled locks no longer stick out of the crowd of distance divas, but serve as a badge of honor among the motley crew of sweaty, stinky girls with discombobulated hair and brightly colored socks.

Runner 11) Kelly (sorry, no bio)

Runner 12) David is a 35-year-old, born and raised in Minnesota. He sells software for a company headquartered in St. Cloud. He has been the captain of four different Ragnar teams, and he eventually hopes to run each and every Ragnar.

When David is not on the road, he keeps himself busy with exercise and hanging out with friends. He plans to run his first marathon in May.

Bondi BandMe So Thorny is proudly sponsored by Bondi Band. Look for our colorful Bondi Band wicking headbands on the course and check out this killer discount!

Written by

Brian Darrow is a running coach in St. Petersburg, FL who specializes in online coaching for beginners. Follow him at

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One Response to "Introducing “Me So Thorny!”"

  1. Mike Sailer says:

    Brian, best wishes today running Del Sol. I wish I could have been there with you all. Looks like you have an awesome team.

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