Happy Friday! We did it, we have made it to the weekend and better yet, a holiday weekend! Bring on the sun, water, food and relaxing! Long holiday weekends, however, is not a free pass to let your diet go to hell. Earlier this week I shared a recipe for a fun Champagne Refresher were I also included a roundup of 15 other recipes that will keep you on track this weekend and leaving you feeling great once the weekend is over.
Last weekend on a whim, I signed my husband and I up for a Spartan Sprint race. We ran a Warrior Dash race a few years ago and I participated in an obstacle course last summer as well so it wasn’t our first rodeo. We still didn’t really know what to expect because we never ran a Spartan race. Well, let me tell you, this race was probably the hardest physical challenge I have ever put my body through. And you know what? I LOVED it! As I was climbing straight up hill for the umphteen time, hurling myself over walls, carry buckets of rocks and sandbags, or climbing a rope I never once regretted participating in this race.
A Spartan Sprint race is an obstacle course anywhere from 3-5 miles long with a bunch of obstacles. Ours ended being 5.25 miles with 22 obstacles. You get one chance at each obstacle and if you fail you have to do 30 burpees. Lets start at the beginning. First of all, to get to the starting line and had to jump over a wall. Just from that, I knew this race was going to be hard. Let me remind you, this race was done at a ski resort. We immediately had to climb our first hill. These weren’t the “green” easy ski hills, no no no, these were the “double black diamond” most difficult ski hills. I know because I would see the signs once I made it to the top. Things were going well until the monkey bars. We just got out of crawling over mounds of mud and dunking under water below walls so I had absolutely no grip. 30 burpees for me. Nick made it across and I told him to keep going. I finished my burprees and the worst thing that could possibly happen, started happening. Cramps. Yep, I got “my time of the month” cramps and they were intense. So intense that I didn’t think I was going to be able to finish. This was not even a mile in. I kept going and realized that when I was running, the cramps weren’t as bad. They eventually wore off or I become numb to them (I don’t really know) and I got this burst of energy. I caught up to Nick and ended up passing him because he had to do burpees at the scaling wall. I didn’t see him for the rest of the race. The bad thing about that was, he was assisting me over the really tall walls that I was too short to reach. Luckily, Spartan competitors are awesome and willing to help!
Fast forward to about mile 4ish. We had to grab a 5 gallon bucket, fill it with landscaping rocks and carry it up a hill and then back down. This was definitely the hardest obstacle for me. Then, you think you get a little break after that,hopefully a flat to run on. Nope. Turn the corner and climb straight up another hill. I then see the 5 mile mark. YES! Only .25 miles to go. The last leg of the race was majority in the woods running sideways on the hills. This was tricky and my feet were killing me because my socks fell half down and were rubbing bad. Pointer to anyone wanting to run a race, wear tall socks! I can now see the finish line but have a couple more obstacles. I come to the spear throw (never thrown a spear in my life). I throw it, hit my target and stand there in awe for a few seconds (anyone who knows me knows I have awful aim) and then continue to the rope climb. I was dreading this. I was like, welp, here come 30 more burpees. I don’t think I have ever climbed a rope but I knew I had to try. I found a rope that had the least amount of mud, faced myself away from the sun (I was being strategic and didn’t want the sun in my eyes). I jump up and I hear a guy cheering for me. Who is this man? I keep climbing and I keep hearing him “one more pull, you got this” when in reality I had like 10 more pulls. I kept listening to him and honestly, he was my motivation to get to the top and hit the damn bell. I reach, I hit the bell. Holy crap, I can’t believe I just did that I thought to myself. I let myself down the rope, jumped over the fire (last obstacle) and crossed the finish line. I didn’t have much running through my mind at this point except, grab water, a banana and go cheer on Nick finishing up.
We got cleaned up and decide to go checkout the results tent. I had absolutely no expectations for this race but was curious about how long it took us. I type in my name and up pops my results. 1st, 1st, 9th. I looked at Nick in disbelief and asked him to read it because I must have been seeing it wrong. He goes “you finished in 1 hour and 38 minutes, you got 1st in your age group, 1st female overall and 9th overall (men and women). I was in shock that I even called over a volunteer to ask if they had a glitch in their system. They didn’t. How in the world did this happen I thought to myself!? I ended up being 27th overall out of 2500 participants in the open division which is still pretty awesome.
I never felt this feeling of accomplishment before. It was such an amazing feeling because I never once even thought about placing or even caring where I placed. It was a true testament to my determination, physical and athletic abilities and I am damn proud of it. I am also extremely proud of my husband. He wasn’t very thrilled about doing this race. But he did awesome! I already have a list of races I want to do yet this summer. The best thing about obstacle course races, it is you vs you. You are able to push yourself and see how far you can take yourself. And you know what, you might just surprise yourself on what you can do like I did. I encourage everyone to step outside of your comfort zone and challenge yourself. You may never know your full potential until you give yourself a little push. And remember, it is you vs you.
This post is already way longer than I wanted it to be so I will get straight to the workout. I actually got this workout from Spartan him/herself! It is perfect to do at home, the cabin, beach or wherever you may be this weekend!
1 round for time:
- 100 jumping jacks
- 30 burpees
- 30 box jumps
- 1 minute hollow hold – demonstration video
- 30 bodyweight squats
- 30 side kicks (each leg)
- 100 high knees (50 each leg)
- 30 walking lunges (each leg)
- 30 squat jumps
That’s it! I went for a cool down walk to finish it off.