A lot of people like to refer to me as a fitness fanatic. Personally, I agree with that. I love to spend every day pushing my body beyond it’s limitations just to see if I could. I thought there’s no better way to test my body’s physical abilities then to complete in an obstacle race.
Fortunately for me, when I started to compile this list there was a Groupon available for a discounted entry fee to the 2015 Rugged Maniac, a 5k obstacle course. My friend, Xue and I both wanted to use this as a prep run for our future goal of running a Tough Mudder. Xue and I signed up as a team and were set to run the course.
We signed up for an early afternoon race. By now a lot of the more elite runners finished up so the competitive edge was not present among racers. After the runners finished gathering, the buzzer sounded and we were off. Remembering back to my marathon experience I decided to pace myself for this course. A lot of the runners ahead of us decided to sprint up ahead before quickly dragging behind on the up hill portions.
There were a lot of fun obstacles ahead of us, and fortunately for me, I was an avid Parkour athlete. With ease, Xue and I blew past the early obstacles. We climbed walls, vaulted objects, and jumped over obstacles to quickly find our way to the 1-mile marker. We drank our water and started approaching some of the more shocking obstacles. One said obstacle was to dive feet first into a 4 foot pool of water.
During our run, the weather was well below 60 degrees. After we took our dip into the pool it felt like the weather dropped at least to 30 degrees. We decided to jog around to warm ourselves up, but moments when we had to stop and wait to run some obstacles soon gave us that chilling feeling again. We reached many a more water obstacles between 1-2 miles. My favorite in particular was sliding down a plastic tube, crawling in a foot of water while underneath bar wire, then climbing back up to the tube to be greeted by the foulest smelling mud.
When we hit the mile 2 marker our bodies became more dirt than clothing. We headed our way past a number of other obstacles that challenged our strength and balance. When we got to the sand bags, Xue did not hesitate to grab the 50-lb bag as opposed to the 20-lb. I decided to do the same and raced him up to the top of the hill. We both dropped our bags down at the end of the obstacle then jogged our way towards the end. After literally jumping over fire and climbing a warped wall we were finally at the last obstacle, a slide down to another pool of freezing water.
We both looked at each then slid down while giving out our battle cries. We ended our race dirty and victorious. We went out to refuel on some much needed carbs before I went off to take two showers to get the mud off me. In the end, it was a fun experience and I had immediately signed up for another obstacle race for 2016.
Finish a Rugged Maniac ACCOMPLISHED!