Tuesday, May 22, 2012

I Am Spartan!

The big story of the week has nothing to do with me surviving my first Spartan Race, it is all about how Little Guy just crushed his.  He was literally flying.  I wish I took video of him, it was awesome.  Somehow that is how I envisioned myself dominating the course.  That vision came to a crashing halt 2 miles into my race.

Little Guy did awesome, if there was something to jump he jumped it, if there was something to go threw he dove through it, crawl under he slid under it.  He was on fire.  He never let up, it was full blast the whole way.

In the pic of him below crawling behind those 4 kids, yeah, before they got the next 5 feet, he was already past them and up and running. 

I did horrible, I finished bottom 1/3rd out of 3200 racers.  One of my colleagues took 3rd in his age group and 35th overall, wow.  So now I am determined to make sure I am in great shape for next year's race, which I have already registered for.

The weather was perfect, it was about 80 degrees, partly cloudy, a nice breeze and cool water to run/wade through now and then.  The Spartan Sprint is advertised as 3+ miles and 15+ obstacles.  And by 3+ miles, they mean 6 miles (5.8miles but who was mapping it).  By 15+ obstacles, they mean about 24 of them, and that is lumping the sets of walls together as a single obstacle.

Look how optimistic I was at the start as I high five'd the boys out of the gate.  The first 2 miles were great, and I did pretty well, it was basically a trail run, and the trail was awesome.  It was up and down some nice hills, across some rocky outcroppings every now and again, it was just great. 

We hit some water, nothing big, just some ankle deep stuff.  Then we hit the first real obstacle, a 4 foot wall to jump, followed by a wall to crawl under, then another wall to jump.  After that is was more running, and more walls etc.

More running then monkey bars, log hops, really big walls, chest deep water, obstacles in chest deep water, then a 20' high net climb, then concrete blocks to carry, a horizontal plywood wall traverse, uphill sandbag carry, it was a blast.

Then it got ugly. Crawling through mud up and down a few small 3' bumps under barbed wire, then the worst thing of the day,  a small PVC pipe to crawl through.  I should have skipped it and done the 30 burpees (jumping squat thrusts).  I got in this thing, and there were about 10 people already in it, it was slow, full of dirt and nasty and probably 50-60 feet long.  The guy in front of me kicked me a few times, and then took a nap.  I couldn't breathe and when I got out I was basically spent but immediately had a 100' rocky climb at a really steep angle until I got to a water station where they told us we were half way done.  What?  I thought we had about a mile left, nope, 3 miles left.

The last 3 miles were really fun, except the mile I was basically hobbling because my left quad seized up, I lost about 1/2 hr on that one.  But I got it worked out, and got back to a really slow jog until the mud hills.  There were a few sets of those.  The mud was nasty, but at least is was nice and cool.

The final half mile was fun.  Mud hills, a rope climb out of thigh deep mud (which I didn't get up more than about 6 feet), fire jump, log walk over a pond, spear throw, more mud hills, big wall with a rope to climb and then about 100 or more yards of mud crawl/roll under barbed wire to the final 30 feet complete with 2 gladiators trying to hit you with big batons.

I finished, with a smile on my face. 

This is what I always thought running should be, I am not interested in marathons through big concrete jungles, or bike rides along endless miles of asphalt.  Give me 6 miles of mud, water, monkey bars and concrete blocks, and I am game.