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Sample Event

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The 2019 Hoku Relay Packet contains all the information you need leading up to the relay.
2019 Hoku Relay Course Guide contains detailed information about the running routes.
The 2019 Relay Waiver needs to be filled out by anyone participating in the event that did not register for the relay on this site, such as a driver, running buddy for a night leg, or anyone that will be in the car.

We recommend teams meet several times prior to the event to make sure the team is prepared, on-track for fundraising, and well-trained for the mileage.

It's important to discuss:

  • Who will be running each leg? We recommend going in a repeating order so you always follow the same runner and everyone has enough time to rest between legs
  • Once the routes are decided, memorize your route! The course is not marked, and it's your responsibility to learn the route. Your car can always stay near you and help you navigate the course, but it's a lot more fun if you feel confident about where you're running at each step
  • Who will be driving each leg? The person who just ran is usually pretty tired
  • If you have multiple vehicles for your team, what will you do when your whole car is not running? We recommend sleeping and eating
  • If you have multiple vehicles, how will you stay in communication? We recommend setting up a WhatsApp group and giving confirmations when you're heading to the exchanges. Also, make sure to bring cell phone chargers for the car!
  • Plan restroom breaks and meals along the route
  • Plan a grocery run before the event to stock up on water, bananas, maybe some red bull, etc.
  • Safety plans, especially for running at night. We recommend the car follow the active runner in areas where it is dark, and to always wait at the next turn to ensure runners don't get lost
  • Who will be in charge of ordering safety gear (details below) for your team. You really want to be extremely lit up at night, think Christmas tree
  • How to make the event even more fun and memorable for your team (costumes, playlists, posters)
  • Whose cars will your team use? If you need to rent cars, who is going to take care of that?

From sunset to sunrise, the active runner is required to have the following at a minimum:

We’d really recommend making yourself as bright as possible. You want to make sure cars can see you very easily and from very far away. If staying safe from cars isn't enough incentive, the most lit up runner will also receive the much-envied Brightest Award.

Runners will not be able to leave the exchange zones without the above items. 

There is a team fundraising minimum of $250 * # of runners on the team. For example, a team of 10 runners would have a $2,500 team minimum.

Some of our top fundraisers from previous years shared their tips about what makes for a successful fundraising campaign:

  • Plan an event and either charge admission or accept donations. Some examples are inviting people over for a BBQ, putting together a charity softball game, holding a silent auction, or partnering with a local bar for tips to be donated to charity, etc.
  • Donating your birthday to fundraising, or asking friends to donate theirs. Facebook makes this really easy.
  • Seeing if your place of work has any corporate matching, which could cut your work in half!
  • Writing direct emails (or even better, letters!) to people you think would care about the work the organization is doing.

However you raise the money, we greatly appreciate your support and the support of your donors :)

Training for the Hoku Relay isn't rocket science, but these tips might make your training process a little easier:
  • Give yourself enough time. Building peak running fitness is a slow process. Ideally, you’ll devote at least 12 weeks to focused preparation for your The Hoku Relay.
  • Train “backwards.” When planning your training, start by planning your most challenging week of training, which should come two to three weeks before the relay. Think about the kinds of workouts and the overall training load you need to be able to handle by that point in order to achieve your relay goals and schedule accordingly. Then move backwards on the calendar, making your training a little easier each week until you arrive at a starting point, where the workouts and overall training load should be appropriate for your current level of fitness.
  • Use the 80/20 rule. This rule stipulates that 80 percent of your training time shall be spent at low intensity (where you’re able to talk comfortably) and 20 percent at moderate and high intensities. This is what elite runners do, whereas most recreational runners do less than half of their training at low intensity.
  • Run a lot…but within reason. The more you run, within your personal limits, the fitter you will become. If you obey the 80/20 rule and do most of your running at low intensity, you will be able to run more without burning out. However, always listen to your body and take breaks and days off as needed.
  • Train in phases. The first several weeks of your Hoku training should constitute a base phase, where you focus mainly on increasing your overall training mileage to develop basic aerobic fitness, endurance, and durability. From there, move into a specific phase for a few weeks. During this period you will do challenging workouts that approximate the demands of racing so that your body is specifically prepared for them. Finally, complete a taper phase of one to two weeks. During this phase you will sharply reduce your training volume while continuing to do some high-intensity work to rest and sharpen for relay day.
  • Obey the hard-easy rule. Fast runs and long runs both count as “hard” runs. Generally, you should do two runs per week that include faster efforts plus one long run. These runs should be separated by easy days of training so that you are relatively fresh and ready for the hard ones. The exception comes the final weeks of “specific” training when it’s a good idea to do back-to-back fast runs to prepare your body for the challenge of running multiple Hoku relay legs.
  • Cross-train. It’s a good idea to do at least one non-impact cardio workout such as bicycling each week. This will reduce the pounding your legs are subjected to without sacrificing fitness. It will also give you a running alternative to readily fall back on whenever you’re injured or sore and running isn’t a good idea. If you can find the time, try to squeeze in at least two functional strength workouts each week as well. This will further reduce your injury risk and improve your running performance by boosting the efficiency of your stride.
  • Listen to your body. Training plans should be written in pencil, not ink. Think of your training plan as a best-case scenario, representing the training you will do if absolutely nothing goes wrong. But something usually goes wrong, so be ready and willing to make appropriate adjustments whenever you are too sore, tired, or sick to do the run you planned for a given day.