Just a quick recap of my first Spartan race! I actually won a race entry, and had a friend (and her husband) driving up from San Diego to complete the Sacramento race. She is a hardcore OCR-er and is a member of the Weeple Army. The Weeple Army is a mud/obstacle course group for people of all abilities and levels (thankfully!). They only have one goal: to have FUN! I was super worried about doing the race because 1) this was my first big OCR. I had done the Survivor mud run earlier in the year but that was only about 3.1 miles, the weather was good and the obstacles were easy. 2) Instead of signing up for the Spartan Sprint (3+ miles and about 15 obstacles), I thought “I can do more!” and signed up for the mid-level Spartan Super (8+ miles and 20+ obstacles), 3) I had done the Nike Women’s Half just 6 days before, and had gotten back from 3 weeks in SE Asia just 8 days before. 4) California is in a severe drought. The one weekend it was going to rain was the Spartan weekend. Awesome.
By Friday it was already raining and when I woke up Saturday to make the hour-long drive to Van Vleck Ranch, it was still raining. It did stop once I got closer to Sacramento, but hours of rain had already done their job – everything was muddy. Muddy and wet. Every obstacle was slathered in mud from the shoes of previous racers. Everything was slick and slippery. Some of the obstacles you couldn’t even do because there weren’t footholds anymore, just piles of mud shoved into what used to be holes and openings. You couldn’t grip anything because you’d slip right off – I slipped right off of the monkeybars when I tried to grip them. I had elected to wear my running sunglasses instead of my regular glasses for the race, in case the sun decided it wanted to come out (they also help to cut glare when it’s overcast). By the second obstacle, since it was raining, I couldn’t see at all since the lenses were wet. They were now useless, so I put them on top of my head and tried to run and do obstacles without them. I couldn’t see my footing or what I was stepping on, so I rolled my ankles more times than I’d care to count on ground that was being washed away by the rain, so it was super uneven, muddy, rocky and full of holes.
The hand and foot “holdings” on the Horizontal Wall Traverse were slathered in mud, so you… (more…)