Last weekend I was able to check another Spartan Race off my list by running the Chicago Super. After competing a couple times and doing well in the competitive heats I decided to up my game and compete against the Elites. The Elite women are just that, elite! To get a better idea of how fit and athletic these women are, I was standing at the starting line with Heather Gollnick who is an Elite Spartan Pro. I was standing next to a professional athlete!
After talking myself off the ledge and easing my nerves from realizing what I was actually getting myself into we were off. These chicks took off like a rocket. They took off like a pack of wolves were chasing us. I knew if I attempted to keep up I’d crash hard, so instead, I found a good pace that I knew I could keep for the majority of the race. Going into this race and knowing that there would be some stiff competition my only goal was to lay it all out on the course. So that’s what I did.
From never doing this race before I didn’t know what the terrain would be like. Well, it was 7.6 miles of flatness. I expected some tough hills but there was literally none. Some inclines, but nothing too challenging. This was definitely a runners race. I am not a strong runner so I focused on the obstacles. I was doing well, I was happy with my running, how I was feeling, getting through obstacles, I was feeling good the majority of the race. I was well over halfway but knew the really tough obstacles were yet to come. Just like that, I was at the Olympus. I have only attempted this obstacle once and failed. As a matter of fact, I didn’t even make it a fraction through. So, I was determined to get further than the first time. I had a better idea of technique and went for it. I was about two moves from ringing the bell and completing the obstacle when my footing slipped. I was hanging on for dear life but I just couldn’t grasp my footing again. Down I went and had my first set of 30 burpees of the day. I was disappointed that I didn’t make it across but I was proud of the improvement so I trucked on with my head held high.
My next defeat came at the Twister. This was another obstacle I have only attempted once and failed. I was cruising through this obstacle without a problem and I could see the bell. Only two more moves and I would be ringing that bell! Well, fatigue set in, my grip began starting and I dropped. TWO moves from the bell! Just like the Olympus! 30 more burpees. This is when I noticed my hands were completely torn. I had blood all down my hand but still had more grip obstacles to complete.. shit..
The Spear Throw, the dreaded spear throw. I should have taken more time here because my arms were so dead from the Twister and burpees that the spear fell just short of the hay bail. 30 more burpees.
I was pumped to get to the Rope Climb. I have climbed countless ropes before and had no doubt I would get it. I was wrong. My hands were so torn I couldn’t grip the rope. 30 more burpees.
I could see the finish line but there were a couple obstacles standing in my way. I could see the Multi-Rig which is ring monkey bars. I thought to myself, should I even attempt this with my hands in such bad shape or try it anyways? I went for it and to my surprise I got across. I think at this point, my body was numb from the pain! I sprinted up the Slip Wall and jumped of the Fire Jump and I was d.o.n.e.
I’ve never missed that many obstacles so crossing the finish line was bitter sweet. I was proud for pushing myself into the Elite heat but couldn’t help but be disappointed in my obstacle performance. I finished 26th out of 52 women. 52 stellar women. It isn’t the placing I was hoping for or expecting but I did what I came there to do. Failed obstacles and all, I laid everything out on the course and gave it everything I had. I learned a lot, have an even bigger respect for Spartan Elite Women and can’t wait to do it all over again soon!