I mentioned in an earlier post that Mike and I ran a Savage Race with a few of his coworkers a few weeks ago! I was so excited to run my first true obstacle race, and it was soooo much harder than I expected…and I can’t wait to run my next one :) Here’s the run-down:
The Basics: 25 obstacles over 6.5 miles
The race was held at the Hopkins Game Farm in Kennedyville, Maryland. The race trail went through corn fields, woods, and open fields. Running through the corn fields was surprisingly challenging; the stalks had been cut down to create a path, but the dried up stalks and corn cobs made for some rocky footing.
The Obstacles: For some reason, I really pooh-poohed the obstacles prior to the race; I didn’t think they’d actually be that hard and didn’t bother doing any specific training. Boy, was I wrong. Any obstacle that involved arm strength – climbing over walls, monkey bars, rock climbing side-ways – was very challenging for me and I ended up having to bypass several of them. There were also a bunch of muddy obstacles, which were fun but smelly. My goal for next time is to get to 100% completion, which won’t be easy!
– Worst obstacle: Colossus (climbing up a huge wall and getting over a ledge – I couldn’t do it and saw many others fail this one too) or Shriveled Richard (ice bath requiring full submersion – I was shivering terribly after this one!)
– Favorite obstacle: Block Party – this involved pulling a heavy cinderblock up a hill on a rope, and then carrying it back down. This was one of the few obstacles involving arm strength that I was able to complete, so I felt very accomplished after I finished it, lol
What I Wore: It was cold (~mid 40s) and windy the morning of the race, so I opted to wear a warm long sleeve compression shirt, capris, and a pair of Reebok shoes that I was getting ready to donate (I threw them out after the race). On the advice of a friend, I also picked up a pair of fingerless water sport gloves to help with grip – so glad I did! I think this prevented my hands from getting blisters from all the ropes and monkey bars. I definitely recommend wearing compression clothing; loose clothing can get stuck on barbed wire and walls.
Post Race: We brought a change of clothes, a towel and shower wipes – which were awesome because we couldn’t find the advertised showers on site after the race. Because the last obstacle involved water, we weren’t actually that muddy, but I was shivering like crazy and desperately needed to clean off and change into dry warm clothes.
My Thoughts: Honestly, I was struggling and so tired for most of the race – we kept asking how many miles we had covered and each time the answer was much lower than I wanted, lol. The race took us nearly 2 hours to complete, and I was miserable and so glad when we were done. But I guess it’s the same kind of misery I felt at the end of my first marathon, because I’m already thinking about the next one.
I loved the feeling of camaraderie during the race; most people aren’t doing this for time, so strangers were helping each other to get over walls, pointing out where to step and cheering each other on. Also, there’s nothing like an obstacle race to make you feel like a badass :) Now where’s the nearest tattoo parlor…