I use to wait around on other people so that I could do things that I wanted to do. If I still did that instead of running in 8 obstacle races/mud runs, I probably would have run in NONE. Are people really herd animals or pack animals? It is nice to have other people around, but I realized that I was much happier just doing the things that I wanted to do whether or not I had other people with me. If you can’t break off on your own it can be difficult to do some of the things that you may really want to do. Besides I usually end up meeting other people at these races, that also have the same type of motivation and challenge in themselves that I have found in me. These races are addictive for people who are looking for a challenge.
On November 17th, I ran in the Fenway Spartan Race. I entered the race a few months earlier and told some friends that I was running in it and asked if any of them wanted to run. 3 of them took me up on it and 2 others came out to support us. None of them really knew what to expect until after they signed up, so it got kind of funny when they started asking me about some of the obstacles. Sue was already very active but hadn’t run in this type of race yet. Chris and Sheila decided to start working out so that they could get ready for the race. Sheila even started to make changes to her diet.
The Spartan was challenging just like the last one that I did, but it was only 2.5 miles. They did cram a lot of obstacles into those 2.5 miles and we ran all over the stadium steps. On top of that we had to do burpees a number of times. If you screwed up certain obstacles you rewarded with 30 more burpees. Those things suck. The only one that I screwed up on was the spear throw. It kind of feels like throwing the piece of paper that a straw comes in. Hard to balance and not real heavy. The race was a blast. At the end you get the opportunity to run over 3 or 4 Gladiators or get the opportunity to have them slam you into the wall.
Sheila fell about half way through the race and banged up her elbow pretty bad. She had been telling me how much she was looking forward to this race ever since she signed up. I could tell that it was something that motivated her and helped her set a goal that put her on the right track of training and nutrition. So falling down and jacking up your elbow really stinks when you are that close. The first thing that probably went through her mind was this hurts like hell. I think its broken. Kind of funny how you focus on completing something and now your mindset becomes fight through the pain and finish. That is exactly what she did. She came that far and knew that she couldn’t walk away from it without crossing the finish line. She worked to hard to get there.
All three of them have told me that not only did they love running in the Spartan but that they wanted to do more of them. These are not just races they build character and can help you find what you are made of. I am glad that I had the three of them run with me and the other two hang out with us. They can all be proud of their accomplishments. I know that I am.
You might have to Learn to S.W.I.M.™ on your own but there are always people who can support you and help you on your way.