I'm Randy Mouri and this blog is about my quest to be an official finisher in the Race Across AMerica (RAAM), the toughest endurance race in the world. It's over and I became an official solo finisher in 11 days, 1 hour and 13 minutes! We continue to raise money and awareness on behalf of Habitat for Humanity of Northern Virginia (Habitat NoVa). If you would like to make a donation to Habitat NoVa, please visit my page on Habitat’s site. Endless thanks to our sponsors and all the folks that have made such generous contributions. Team Mouri would not have been able to travel so comfortably, which certainly may have changed the outcome of the race.

Monday, October 17, 2011


I know this is long overdue.  I've been having difficulty coming up with words that have not been already written.  I've been looking for words to inspire others wishing to do RAAM in that this race is not about being fast and furious, but steady and calm.  It is certainly a race that anyone could achieve, if you have the right desire and passion.  But isn't that true about everything in life?  I am certainly your average Joe that just likes a challenge every now and then.  I don't think I'm obsessive about what I do.  I only obsess when I need to.  I think life is about balancing out everything on your plate and being able to digest it all without upsetting your stomach.  I like to use the food analogy because I like to eat.  Anyway, I hope that made sense.

So nothing motivational here.  Just a few facts about my race.

Here are some numbers that may be of interest and may or may not have been covered in previous posts.  A big number is the expense.  Our RAAM related expenses (which started about 8 months out) amounted to $65,000.  We had raised $20,000 from cash and in-kind sponsors, $25,000 from donations and fund raisers and the balance came from personal funds.  Expenses for just the race were about $35,000, but our team was well outfitted.   I can imagine doing RAAM for about $15,000, but it would be tough on the crew and eventually the racer as well.

My sleep breaks ranged from 10 minute power naps to 2 hour luxury snoozes.  Some breaks were longer, but the actual sleep time was rarely over 1.5 hours.  I think I could go off less with better training.  As some of you know my training suffered during the time I was supposed to be peaking.  This was 6 weeks of sleep deprivation focus, based on Pete Penseyres plan of riding 400 miles after work on Fridays.  I only rode one 300 miler after work on Friday, so I really fell short on this focus, which showed during the race.

I never had any hallucinations, partly because I never pushed my mental state that hard and in looking back I'm not sure I have the ability to do such a thing without the high risk of falling asleep on the bike and crashing.  I had plenty of rude awakenings, which are unpleasant.  A lot of bad thoughts go through your mind when you catch yourself sleeping on the bike.

My crew played music over the PA system, but there are many times that I preferred the quiet.  There's something cool about just listening to the sound of your drive chain and the tires on the road.  Maybe that's why I was always so sleepy...

I didn't use a great deal of chamois creams.  I stayed with powder the majority of the way and would treat sores with Brave Soldier Antiseptic ointment and Lanacane.

I didn't have a great deal of aches and pains either.  The normal neck issues, swollen feet and hands, saddle sores and sore knee joints.  My crew took excellent care of me.  I was so fortunate to have compiled such a great, diverse crew.  And I can see why many folks say that the crew can make it or break it for the racer.  My crew definitely made it for me.  What a spectacular group of folks.

My favorite aspect of doing RAAM was meeting so many incredible people from around the world that are so passionate about their sport.  My least favorite aspect of doing RAAM is that it does, eventually end.

And it does so quickly.  You're out on the open roads having the time of your life with many of your closest friends and then you cross the finish line and it's over.  Everyone packs up and leaves.  RAAM racers get pampered like nobody's business.  It's a tough life when it comes to an end.  You REALLY do miss the attention.  But it's all over now.

RAAM was an incredible experience, but for some strange reason it fell short for me.  And it was my fault.  I thought I would be satisfied with an official finish, but I wasn't.  I am not.  I needed to suffer more than I had and I needed to push harder to get there.  I'm sure you've heard in many sports about an athlete leaving it all out there and having absolutely nothing left in the tank.  Well that wasn't me.  Maybe too much time has passed and I'm not thinking clearly.  Perhaps this was my intention all along.  I really don't know.  All I do know is that there will be another attempt some day.  And like RAAM 2011, the timing will have to be right in my life and the rest of you will know.

Thank you for all of your support and for being there for me!  If you have any desire at all to do RAAM, you can make it happen.

Much love, happiness and success to all of you.  Hope to see you on the road or trails.