Thursday, May 7, 2015

Spartan Race Attempt One

*If there WAS a finish line
A Spartan Race is a series of obstacle races varying in distance and difficulty. We did the Spartan Sprint, which was 4.5 miles long with 23 obstacles. Ours was at Fort Carson- an Army base here in Colorado Springs, so it was designed by the military. 

When I first signed up, I thought "neat! mud run", then I actually did some research and thought "shit. mud run plus a bunch of physically challenging, potentially impossible obstacles". 

But, I've been doing Orange Theory Fitness for a few months now, and I feel stronger than I ever have- so while I was a little nervous, I was excited by the challenge.

After an hour of driving to the base, walking to the course, finding out our bib numbers, getting our trackers, checking our bags, we were finally at the starting line.

This is when my nerves started to set in. Before we could even line up at the starting line, we had to climb over a 5 foot wall. I #failed at this and needed a little boost. The starting gun blew and we started our trail run.

The first obstacle was first to climb over another 5 foot wall, immediately followed by a 6 foot wall. Both of which I needed a little boost on. I later told Dan I felt super embarrassed about that, trying to think of how to "practice" this. So let me know if any of your have an sturdy fences I could practice jumping over.

Next, we ran up a hill, down a hill to a 20 foot structure made of metal crisscrossed with black straps. We had to climb up one side and down the other. Easy enough.

We then ran about half a mile to a giant sign, where the last two numbers of our bib number were associated with a name and then a series of numbers, of which we needed to memorize- as we would be asked about it later in the race.


We ran another half mile to the rope climb, where we had to climb up the rope to ring the bell. If we couldn't complete this, we had to do 30 burpees. This is where the lightning started and clouds rolled in. They shut down all water obstacles at this point; including the rope climb which had a pool of mud water below it.

Ok skip, on to the next obstacle; the barbed wire army crawl. Down on all fours, then our bellies and under the wire we went. We were army crawling for about 20 feet, when they called everyone out of the obstacle because of the lightning- now all the wire and metal obstacles were closed.

We stood up out of the bared wire, and ran to the next obstacle. At this point, I was feeling quite lucky to get out of that one, the barbed wire army crawl spanned nearly the length of a football field. #sheesh

Then came the hail, and now all obstacles were shut down. So basically we were just doing a trail run. At this point we were 2 miles in. Besides a few rivers and mud pits we trudged through, we completed 2.5 obstacles.

They even shut down the finish line. C'mon! We don't even get that?!

They apologized and shuffled us through an awkward opening to claim our medals (which felt sooo undeserved.) We then grabbed our bags, rinsed off in the giant showers and played a guessing game of which changing tent was male and which was female. After changing into fresh clothes, we thought the only thing that would really make up for the shitty race was our free beer ticket.


The beer people packed up and WENT HOME before we even finished the race. What a bust!

It was a disappointing day considering how much I hyped myself up, and how excited I was for this challenge, and how thinking of flip flops and cold beer was the one thing getting me through it.

Then I remembered shit happens and life goes on. It was a fun, challenging day doing a 4.5 mile trail run mostly up hills- something to be proud of.

PLUS- we received an email apologizing for the obstacle closures with a $100 credit toward a future race. Looking back, running past the obstacles we couldn't attempt, honestly, some of them scared me. Some of them I don't think I could've completed and that pisses me off. And I want to use that anger to prepare for a future Spartan Race- so that I feel far more prepared to finish it!

Here are some pictures from wikipedia of some of the obstacles: The fire jump (which I was super pumped for), the wall scale, and the rope climb.

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