Epic Man 2012

Live to inspire… that's one of the mantra's I live by these days. If it has to do with photography or weddings or anything in my personal life, I always aim to inspire others. Why? Because finding things or people that truly inspire me does not happen very easily, mostly because there is a lot of mediocre crap flying past your eyes day in and day out. I'm addicted to that feeling of finally finding something that get's my blood pumping and wheels spinning. Trying to fly above, we'll call it, Level M (M = mediocrity) isn't always a cake walk, but it's what keeps me happy. When I find something that has inspired me I will share it until I'm blue in the face.

Epic Man is one brand that has truly inspired me. The first time I saw this craziness go down was last year (as my long time followers may recall in this post).  I was so inspired that I went from not being able to run more than 2 miles, to running a half marathon! Now for those of you (like my old self) who hates running and can't breathe after mile 1, a half marathon was a HUGE feat; a feat made possible by the inspiration and motivation that the 2011 Epic Man team pumped me with, they were my inspiration.

This year Justin and I were the overnight support vehicle + 2/4th of the photo crew + cheerleaders for this amazing and growing team. (photo below by Alpengraphik)

This journey started out at Petite Jacqueline in Portland, ME owned by one of the 4 Epic Ladies, Liz. If you're ever in Portland, ME and really hungry, I highly recommend the food, soooo good.

Thinking back to this day, the one thing that sticks out most in my mind was the ENERGY in the room once everyone arrived. It was off the hook!!! Probably my favorite part of the whole journey, catching up on the last year, prepping the mind and body for an incredible journey.

Also, I HAVE to give a shout out to all of the Epic Man Kids - Carter, Alec & Ty

So after a yummy dinner the team headed over to the Tri-Maine office to fix up the bikes, have a few beers and talk strategy!

Bikes so light you can carry them in your mouth!

After that little strategy and pep talk, we all headed over to the bar for PARTY TIME!!!! (excellent)

Yes, even though they're about to kayak 2.5 miles, bike 160 miles OVERNIGHT, and then run the Boston Marathon… they still have time for a drink or 2. Epic!

The next morning we all gathered and rode down to the ferry station where we crossed over to Peaks Island to kayak back to the main land.

With signs in tow, the Epic Man team and fans followed to cheer them on every step of the way.

Watching them all try and squirm into a wet suit was pretty hilarious and entertaining!

Fashionista, Ed… Sporting the scarf/wet suit combo, well done!

I had to share these, you know I love me some cool tattoos :) The one on the right might remind you of this post, long ago!

And they're off!

And we cheered them on every step of the way!

After we got to the main land, we all enjoyed some woodfire pizza at Flatbread.

And they were off for the first leg of the bike, 70 miles to Portsmouth, NH. Bellies were full, spirits were high and the sun was shining!

You can always rely on Skip for a good laugh!

We stopped about every hour along the route to rest and re-fuel…

… And as I was editing all of these pictures, I realized… Jake never puts his phone down! The Epic Communicator.

Once we arrived at the Trek store in Portsmouth, NH owned by another Epic Lady (and mother of 2) Olivia, we had Chipotle, beers (water too) and of course stretched a little.

And we were off to the Mitchell residence where the team would rest and relax, and if possible get a little shut eye for an hour. After that, it was time to strategize through the night ride, because it is very dangerous.

And as always, Ace & Gary kept the team laughing and in good spirits.

With stops throughout the night, Justin and I would pump the music loud and get out and cheer everyone on. As the night grew longer energy was becoming less and less abundant but the laughs never stopped coming.

And when we ran out of water and finally found a Walgreens that was open at 3:00am they were still cracking jokes.

We finally made it to Hopkinton where the Epic Man team would race in the Boston Marathon. Yes, you read that right… after no sleep and riding a bike 170 miles, they were going to now run on the hottest marathon day of the year (91 degrees) 26.2 miles.

While the team was STILL full of energy and adrenaline, Justin and I were BEAT! We were so happy to be heading home for some shut eye.

And this was our epic ride home… Boston bumper 2 bumper!

The one thing that I truly loved about being on this journey with the Epic Man team was being part of a team again… even if I was in the car driving behind them making sure they didn't get run over. I've always been on a team my whole life until I went solo with photography, I miss team life.

This team is made of some pretty amazing stories. Stories of people who have never run or biked before, people who have overcome serious injuries etc… each person has an epic story that has given them the inspiration to join the team. Read more about each member of the team here - www.alwaysbeepic.com

Peace, Love & Team Epic,

April K