Tag Archives: running

Running and Writing

28 Feb

In truth I’m pretty impressed with myself for finishing the second novel in my 12 of 12 literary quest  this year.

As you all know I’m the slowest reader, who’s a writer, on Earth, and I put this challenge forward as a way to expand my reading beyond my kid’s reading list and discover some new and exciting stories.  I enjoy the a-ha moments, or just the little tid-bits of advice that come to me throughout the chapters, something that helps me shift something inside me and keep me on the yellow-brick road, no matter how rocky the path.

Harukami.jpg

Now I hadn’t heard much about Murakami so I don’t know what that says about my literary chops, but I’m trying. I mean the cover alone made me think I was about to go on an epic journey.  I was really looking forward to reading this as it came highly recommended by a writer I’ve recently discovered through the awesome world of Podcasts. When he mentioned it the book centering on writing and running, I was like … yes. Someone else gets it! Someone can see how these two are intertwined and I embarked on this can’t-wait-to-see-what-happens enlightenment session.

However, it wasn’t a life-altering experience, which was disappointing. I was thinking it would hit me like a bolt of lightning, but it was more nuanced than that. It did have its moments though.

The narrative seemed to pick up around chapter six for me, when I felt he got a little deeper with meaning behind his running and writing, and what happens when we get older and the facts of life we have to accept. I enjoyed the parallels he made between both passions, and the goals and life lessons he learned along the way.  I especially enjoyed the last paragraph of the book, as it captured the essence of the journey. He championed himself as a runner, someone who was always determined to finish, and never give up, someone who never walked during a marathon, and I found that quality admirable. That metaphor applied not only to running, but to his his life.

I feel the only reason I was able to make this connection was because I was a writer and runner myself. If you are not a runner or a writer, this book may not be for you, you might not enjoy the details of his marathon training, long runs, or writing process. I had never heard of Haruki Murakami before this recommendation, but considering he had some bright spots in this novel I might give another book a chance. It’s always interesting to read something, even if it’s not mind-blowing, that adjusts something inside of you, no matter how small. You’re just a little bit different from the day you started the story.

Buen Camino my friends!

 

Got An Extra High-Five For That One

5 Dec

I remembered no one being on that track other than myself. I remembered that breath I took when it happened. I remembered my face catching the sun as I looked up and smiled.

You know, I know I didn’t need the validation. In fact I knew I had done more … a lot more. I had reached the milestone way before the ticker clocked it in. But for some reason recording it made it more official … made the moment feel more like a-haaaaaaaaaaaaa!

 

img_6680

 

And the thing is I wasn’t even planning it, the 100 just sort of snuck up on me.

I knew I had already run 100 miles in my lifetime, probably multiple times before discovering the app, but the fact that I had done it and done it in such a short amount of time felt empowering. And the weird thing was that I always hated running but as I’ve gotten older I appreciate the quiet moments on the track and feeling like I’m in my own Gatorade-Nike commercial.

I enjoy the pool even more, I know my knees do, but the weather hasn’t been conducive to a dip in the pool, plus I don’t have one. So there’s that too. Driving out to the non-heated pool in the early hours wasn’t something my body was looking forward to, but putting on sweatpants (I think I may be the only one on Earth to still own a pair of those as everyone else has those yoga pants or tight pants, it’s a tight pants nation) sweatshirt, a beanie, and hitting the track, that seemed doable. And free.

Starting off slow saying to myself I’ll just walk, I’m not in the mood really. I’m tired. My mind is tired. My body is tired, the kind of tired that all parents know very well. But as  I walk the loop on the track, I hear the crunching sound my shoes  make as the gravel meets the treads.

I like that gravely sound. It makes me walk faster and then I rethink the whole walking thing. I think maybe I’ll just run a mile and then it turns into two, sometimes three.

And at the end of the run as I’m pumping my arms, out of breath, racing to the imaginary finish line I feel good. I catch a second wind and feel invigorated when I stop. It isn’t about the calories burned it’s the way I feel at the end. It’s the gravely sound I hear, the peace that comes over me as my breath slows down, the quiet that I needed in my heart to start the day right.

It’s an awesome feeling. The bottle-me up kind. And the fact that I clocked in 100 miles during this process … just makes it even better. Felt like I accomplished a little bit more. I gave myself an extra high-five for that one.

 

Feeling Like Rainbow Brite … But A Badass Rainbow Brite

23 Jun

Every time I check one off the list, I feel grateful for the Kodak moments that didn’t kill me.

You see no one ever tells you that when planning a Bucket List Adventure or a Sandbox List Adventure sometimes the stress of the entire mission leads to moments of anxiety, fatigue and eventually gray hair. But in the end the awesomeness of it all outweighs the little setbacks you encountered along the way.

And this is what happened … the crankiness of being woken up at the crack of dawn, the traffic along the way, the crowds at the parking lot, and the delays of the starting line all melted away when they heard the music and our New Balance shoes started moving. This weekend The Guats took on The Happiest 5K on the planet … The Color Run.

 

 

We picked up our gear early and ready to let our awesome out ... even got stickers for my Little Guats.

We picked up our gear early and were ready to let our awesome out … even got stickers for my Little Guats.

 

The only race that I know where the warm up is a Zumba Fest with prizes.

Once we got there we began warming up  … The Color Run is the only race I know where the warm up is a Zumba Fest with prizes.

 

The Little Guat decided to join the warm-up festivities and was a hit with the crowd. She definitely had the music in her.

The Little Guat decided to join the warm-up festivities and was a hit with the crowd. She definitely had the music in her.

 

They decided to jam a little in order to get pumped up for the race.

The warm-up was followed up with a jam session. They wanted to get pumped up for the race.

 

The countdown begins ...

And then the countdown began …

 

BOOM! They saw the sign and the adrenaline pushed them up the hill. They completely forgot about the incline as soon as they saw colors.

BOOM! They saw the sign and the adrenaline pushed them up the hill. They completely forgot about the incline as soon as they saw colors.

 

Ready to get splashed ...

Ready to get splashed …

 

Once we were soaked in blue, my son got the hang of it and decided to lead the way through all the colors. His sister didn't seem to need the stroller any more.

Once we were soaked in blue, my son got the hang of it and decided to lead the way through all the colors. His sister didn’t seem to need the stroller any more.

 

Feeling pretty good after our final color splash and ready to hit the finish line.

In the end, yellow was our last stop and the kids felt proud to be covered with all the colors of the rainbow.

 

When we finally crossed the finish line my kids were ecstatic about the confetti ... and all the high-fives they were getting.

We finally crossed the finish line and my kids were ecstatic about the confetti … and all the high-fives they were getting.

 

My son showing off his colors at the end.

My son showing off his victory colors at the end.

 

Hanging out at the end of the race and getting our paint packets ready for the celebration.

My daughter couldn’t get enough color. Here she is getting her paint packets ready for the finish line celebration.

 

This was one of their favorite parts of the race.

This was one of their favorite parts of the race.  In the end I felt like Rainbow Brite … but a badass Rainbow Brite … the kind who was able to check off a Bucket List Adventure with her family and celebrate it in Guat style.

 

 

 

I Wasn’t About to Be Defeated This Morning

18 Dec

All I wanted to do was go running. And I hate running. It’s bad for my knees, my joints, and just all around bad for my Icy-Hot loving body.

But I do it because it’s the only high-impact crazy aerobic exercise I can do in half an hour where I can feel my muscles working their ass off, and apparently I need my body to be working properly for at least another twenty-thirty years. Dying is not something I look forward to, I would hate to die and leave my kids motherless at such a young age. It’d be heartbreaking, and sure I imagine some people would try to step up to the plate and help raise them, but in truth … there’s no one like me and no one that loves my kids the way I do. I feel I bring out the best in them or at least I try to.

I’m pretty sure every parent feels that way. So in an effort to live longer I do a little running during the week. Apparently exercise prolongs your life so I’m all for that. But it also helps keep me in shape for my triathlon experiences, and it’s the only exercise I can do with my toddler. She sits in the stroller eating her Cheerios, checking out the scene, and reading books. If I had a pool I’d totally be swimming in it no doubt. If I had one of those kiddie ride along seats for my bike, we’d be cruising away. But I don’t. I’m broke-ass. So I do the poor-man’s exercise and run … surrounded by nature. It’s free.

This is not what I usually look like, but I imagine I would look this cool.

This is not what I usually look like, but I imagine I would look this cool.

But I really don’t look forward to it. Crazy enough I’d probably enjoy it more if it was attached to a triathlon. I’d be running toward something, not just running for running’s sake. I’m not a fan of that, but you do what you gotta do.

However this morning … it appeared that the odds were against me.

As a mom you try to be on schedule. Everything is on a schedule. If something goes awry in the schedule it creates a ripple effect for all the events the rest of the day. So your job as a mom is to try to keep to the schedule, try to avoid meltdowns, try to keep the dominoes in line. The schedule is your friend and when you betray your friend in any way it comes back to you. So in an effort to stay on schedule I had a small window available for my you-need-to-exercise activity. But like anything with schedules you need to go with the flow, otherwise your crazy will just get the best of you.

9 a.m. to 10 a.m.

That’s the window.

9 a.m. Changed my kid’s diaper before leaving

9:05 a.m. Packing the Cheerios for our outing.

9:06 a.m.  My kid apparently needing the Cheerios immediately and can’t wait ’till we’re outside in the stroller.

9:07 a.m. Cheerios all over the floor.

9:15 a.m. Cleaned up and finished re-packing Cheerios.

9:17 a.m. Found iPod, missing headphones.

9:25 a.m. Still missing headphones, but found a mini-speaker.

9:30 a.m. Phone rings. I don’t want to get it. I know I can’t get it. The schedule. If it’s important they’ll leave a message.

9:31 a.m. I get a message saying my mom needs me to look something up on the computer.

Dude.

9:32  a.m. I decide it can wait twenty minutes.

9:33 a.m. Grab my keys, turn to look for my kid, ready to go … unexpected potty situation that went beyond wipes. It called for soap and water.

9:40 a.m. Put my newly diapered kid in the stroller, wiggled the stroller over a couple of rocks, and then Bam! The handle bar broke.

It just broke off. Plastic screwed in by metal shouldn’t break off this easily, especially if it’s a Chicco Stroller. Not a fancy jogging stroller, just a regular one the kind you need at places like the mall. But considering I’ve had it since my first kid, I figure it had a little wear and tear that might have contributed to it’s demise.

So I stood there with the handle bar in my hand debating what to do next. My window of opportunity was closing, the universe seemed to be against the whole running outdoors idea. I wondered whether or not I could steer the stroller without it. Could I just hold it from the cup holder/key area? Did I have any duct tape?

No.

Could I still do this somehow?

I don’t know. Maybe.

9:41 a.m. Determined to go for a run, I popped the handlebar back in on one side. It was still clinging for life on the other side, desperately wanting me to put it out of its misery. However I ignored its pleas and tied it with some rope and forged ahead, holding onto the cup holder area the best I could, because apparently I suck at tying knots.

It was sad sight, but necessary. I made up my mind that I was going running and even though I don’t like running I wasn’t about to be defeated this morning. Not by anything. I’m stubborn that way.

It Was a Team Effort

22 Oct

This race wasn’t about making it to the finish line. It was one of my slowest times ever, but I didn’t care. This one was about the people running and walking alongside of me and the reason why we were there.

This one was for my Dad.

Most of the time my competitive edge gets me and I nearly kill myself trying to keep up with the AARP Triathlon chick zooming passed me. But this time I was all right hanging back. In fact I actually walked some of it and for the first time walking didn’t seem to be an athletic failure in my jock-minded head. In fact, walking was supposed to be part of the race. It was in the title. But regardless of whether we were walking or running, I was glad to have shared this with my kids. I was glad they knew what we were doing and why. I was glad they took part in raising money for the American Lung Association.  I was glad they were doing it for my dad and for other people who were in my father’s shoes.

 

We started off with a little stretching

I wanted to hang back at the end, but The Little Guats decided to move to the front and join the warm-up party.

 

Then apparently some stretching.

Then apparently some stretching.

 

We said a little something about why we were doing it.

We said a little something about why we were doing it.

 

And then we were off ... after checking out the crowd I was happy that The Little Guats decided to move to the front of the line.

And then we were off … after checking out the crowd I was happy that The Little Guats decided to move to the front of the line.

 

A few participants needed a quick little break.

A few participants needed a quick little break.

 

As the race progressed my son developed a competitive edge. He saw a few boys ahead of us and decided to speed up our development.

As the race progressed my son developed a competitive edge. He saw a few boys ahead of us and decided to quicken the pace. 

 

In the end, my kids were happy to see the volunteers' signs and receive their high-fives on a job well-done.

In the end, my kids were happy to see the volunteers’ signs and receive their high-fives on a job well-done.

 

 

 

I’d Like to Thank the Creators of Icy Hot for Making This Possible …

22 Oct

Icy Hot … it rocks. This awesome combination of menthol and methyl salicylate allowed my 37-year-old ass to successfully complete my sprint triathlon this weekend.

I would’ve used Ben-Gay on my tweaked knee, but that really didn’t sound athletic enough. It just sounded like I was old and weary. And even though I may feel like that at times there’s no need to perpetuate that train of thought. I’m an athlete damn it — a triathlete. And it was this bad-ass athlete mentality that helped push me through the race — even through the water, which, as predicted, kicked my ass. But I pushed through.

People making their way to the starting line.

The fact that I had a couple of friends in the race made it even more enjoyable. Camaraderie always makes for a better race.

So after a quick morning drive to the coast we unloaded our bikes and made our way to registration and the starting line. Now as I mentioned in my last triathlon piece the starting line is where you get to see everyone’s pre-warm-up routine and athletic attire.

A little too athletic for me.

Sometimes people go too far. But it becomes a good distraction because you’re full of nervous adrenaline.

A little laughter helps. But why was I still a little nervous? Why? The clouds. I was so hoping it wouldn’t rain during the biking leg of the race because I knew I’d probably eat it and need some paramedic assistance. Asphalt is pretty hard stuff. But as I was praying for the rain gods to take a nap, I noticed the starter of the race.

Sugar Ray saying what up, Guat!

Dude.

Sugar Ray Leonard.

I smiled and did my most enthusiastic, what’s-up-hello-holy-crap-you’re-Sugar-Ray-how-you-doing greeting, you know, like we were friends, like if we had brunch the other day, like if he knew me. I held my camera up and he did his what’s-up-hello-I-am-Sugar-Ray good-morning greeting.

I was pumped. I was ready to go. Legendary Sugar Ray Leonard, who won an Olympic Gold Medal and world boxing titles in five weight divisions gave me a thumbs up. Rain or shine. Paramedic or no paramedic it was on.

Three-two-one … Beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeep!

We’re off!

Now everything seemed to be going well during the race. The typical fast pace at the beginning where everyone sprints out like they’re Jamaican runners, whizzing right passed me only to die out after the first mile. As I passed most of these sprinters, I couldn’t help but notice the massive amount of elementary-age kids that were chugging along — keeping pace.

The Hill that slowed many down.

I mean when I was in elementary school I was playing green light-red light and watching Thunder Cats or Looney Tunes. I wasn’t racing in triathlons. I mean they didn’t even look tired. Even when we went up the hill, you saw their little legs speeding along. Don’t know what they feed these kids by the beach, but I’m sure when they hit 37 they’re probably not going to need Icy Hot.

Apparently there was this one kid, Jack, who was getting cheers from spectators all around the course. I didn’t see him or hear the chants. I’d like to think it was because he was behind me, but you never know.

One of the nice surprises that I found between mile one and mile two.

In any case, the running and biking portions of the race were not as grueling as I had thought. I felt bionic. A combination of Jamie Sommers and the Six Million Dollar Man: Colonel Steve Austin. A superhero even. I think I even passed Jack. I was zooming it, thanks to the Icy-Hot and my son’s playlist. However, the transition period sucked. It should take you like a minute. Run. Get your helmet. Get the bike. Go.

No, not for the Guat. For some reason it took me over five minutes to get situated. It wasn’t like I changed shoes or anything. I had a mini iPod and there were headphone wires everywhere. At that point I missed my lucky shirt, but I got over it and moved on.

Here’s my friend, Gonzalez passing me.

And when I got to the pool, it was just as I had expected … Kryptonite. Everyone I had passed during the run and bike phase not only caught up to me, but swam right passed me.

No bionic powers at all, just basic Guat tendencies, like pretending I can freestyle swim.

You know, I don’t know why I even try to freestyle swim. I mean who am I kidding? Who am I trying to impress? Michael Phelps wasn’t there. It’s just not my stoke. Freestyle is a stroke for people whose dots in life are connected. Me … I’m an ass-backwards dots-are-no-where-near-each-other kind of person. I’m a backstroke chick. I actually go faster doing the backstroke, so why the hell did I start of with the freestyle? Who knows. Maybe I went with the fake-it-until-you-make-it mentality.

My reward.

Note to self … that does not work in the pool. You just go slow, with the possibility of cramping and drowning. Stick to the backstroke.

However, regardless of my freestyle attempts and doggie paddles, I backstroked the last two legs of the race and powered through to the finish line.

An hour and twenty minutes. WOO-HOO! An awesome hour and twenty minutes, the kind that makes you feel bad-ass all day.

And for this bad-ass feeling, I’d like to thank the makers of Icy Hot, my son’s playlist, and my stubborn Guatemalan blood for making this possible.

Even Though I Hate This Step It Gets Me One Step Closer.

3 Oct

Two miles. I’m up to two miles a day. Normally I would say, you’re out of your #$^&%@! mind to be running two miles a day. What’s a matter with you? You hate running. You hate it. But when it’s an integral part of a race, it kind of seems necessary. Essential even.

So it’s become part of my training regiment. A necessary evil. But that’s just me. There are hundreds of people who enjoy hitting the pavement at a brisk pace. Apparently some of my friends find it liberating. Rejuvenating. Calming. Stress relieving. A journey that clears your thoughts and centers your mind.

Image via Durtbagz.com

This does not happen to me.

Most people get to run in the morning. They wake up charged up and ready to go. However since my kids wake up at sunrise, and I’m not the greatest morning person, I’m never really in the wake up-charged up-ready to go kind of mood. I’m more in the holy-crap-I’m-exhausted-type-of mood.

I don’t get any “me” time until nine o’clock in the evening, when they’ve both gone to sleep for night.  So my runs happen at night. Not a good place to let your guard down and feel calm or relaxed. No rejuvenation going on here. Just paranoia. Most of the time you’re extremely aware of your surroundings, making sure nobody comes out of the bushes and tries to slash you. However I do get a couple of daylight workout hours during the weekend. But I prefer to bike on those days. Bikes and nighttime traffic don’t really mix.

So I try to liberate, rejuvenate, and calm myself by walking, swimming  or biking during weekend daylight hours.

Running. It’s not for everybody, but in my case it’s something that needs to be done. It’s step one on my path, a dreadful step one. But a very necessary one for success.

And for me, success in triathlons is the finish … making it to the finish. No need to be showboating and finish in first in the 35-40 chick category, the top three hundred is fine.

And what do I need to get there? Nonstop service from the starting line to the bike transition station. That’s the goal. So I’m just gonna cowboy up, lace up my shoes and hit the pavement. I dread thinking about it, even when I’m out the door I question myself. I question the insanity of running. But once I start, I keep going because I know it’s bringing me one step closer to my goal.

One step closer to not passing out when the running part is done. One step closer to not being that chick, you know, that chick that walks during the race.  One step closer … that idea is all it takes for me to keep running in the dark. Night after night I think “one step closer.” And if there’s chocolate waiting for me at the end … well then I’ll run a little faster. Incentives rock when you hate step one.

I’ve Gone From Warrior to Tinman

2 May

After much searching I’ve found it. Something to bring me out of my Warrior Dash Withdrawal Funk. I mentioned it last month and now I’ve gone and did it. Another athletic adventure awaits me. I officially signed up. There’s no more thinking about it.

I wasn’t sure what else I could do to top my last adventure, because after all what can top the race with mud, sweat, obstacles, fire, and beer?

But the athlete in me needed a challenge. I couldn’t workout without any motivation, especially if it involved running. As I mentioned before, running without purpose is not for me. You know, running just for running sake? No, I need to be training for something … a race, or running away from a crazy criminal. So in an effort to remain semi-athletic, I searched for anything adventurous out there within the near future. Something out there for my Guat body to build up to, something needing glucosamine … and then I ran across this little triathlon. The Tinman.

Image via Durtbagz.com

I did it about six years ago, but I think I had more than two months back then to train … four months, no kids, and eight hours of sleep a night. Now … well now I’ve got gray hair, stress, and two extra human beings that need constant attention twenty hours a day. Well, my three-year old not so much. He sleeps at night. My ninth-month old, she extends my mom-shift well into the darkness of night and early morning. I work double shifts. I need a raise.

But regardless of my domestic engineering-motherly duties I’ve said it. It’s out in the open. Now that it’s out there in the blogosphere I must commit. The countdown is on. I got the bike out of storage, I washed my New Balance shoes, and I’m on a mission to find a urine free pool.

No obstacles this time, but there’s still a chance I could fall. It happens even when I walk. My only concern now, other than gravity working its magic, is velocity. How hard and fast can I fall from a bike? Fast enough that it would probably require an ambulance I imagine. But even with a helmet? Yeah, I’m sure it’ll hurt. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves, I just need to be careful when going downhill. Maybe I’ll watch footage of the Tour de France or maybe I’ll watch Breaking Away again. Maybe I just need to get my ass on the bike and practice going down hills. Gotta cowboy up!

Either way The Guat is in training now. I’ve gone from Warrior to Tinman. I think Warrior sounds better. Nevertheless here I come. Giddy up!

My Warrior Update #9

21 Mar

Complications beyond your control. This has become The Guat training mantra this month. I know you can’t control everything, but wouldn’t it be nice to control some things?

Ahhhh the mom dream.

Having my son at home, and not in preschool, for the past month has altered my workout situation. It is no longer taking place in the morning with the baby and my clunky Chicco stroller. It’s become an evening affair, when I’m tired, listless, ready to pass out and in need of “Vita-meata-vegamin”.

It’s the only time, when the kids are asleep and someone can just physically be in the house with them, in case they wake up.

I’ve been working out at night, which makes me more vigilant about my surroundings and any crazy pedophiles that may be lurking in the shadows. It makes me think I should go back to my Hapkido dojo and finish earning my black belt.

Perhaps that will be my next project when my income is more incoming. Until then I’ll have to rely on muscle memory, which to tell you the truth has been pretty good. So anybody who tries to sneak up on me will probably be in need of some serious medical attention. But I try to avoid situations like that and stay on the running track, which is pretty well-lit and in front of a fire station.

However, I still feel pretty bad about not being able to workout on a daily basis these past two weeks, considering the race is just 10 days away. But I make up for it in other lame ways, like running up and down the stairs, as if they were bleachers, or jumping rope. It’s not the same as running two-and-a-half miles but at least it’s a workout and that’s the best I can do. Can’t control everything, right?

But considering that  there’s absolutely no preparation for the last two obstacles, I shouldn’t feel like such a loser. That’s right. No prep, no training. None. So I guess I shouldn’t feel too bad about my dismal workouts last week and this week. The obstacles are based on sheer adrenaline and craziness.

The Petrifying Plunge is the obstacle where I “slosh down a slippery slope” which looks mountain-like from the pictures. A giant dangerous slip-n-slide for adults. I know how to fall, so I don’t think this will be a problem. My concern: stopping. I think I might just do one of those crash landings. No other way to do it.

But the one that freaks me out the most: The Warrior Roast. I’m supposed to leap over the “Warrior  Fires” … logs that are on fire. 

Fire … the stuff with heat and flames. I’m not to keen on burning, so I’m gonna have to use some sort of high jumping skills to clear these bad boys.

Leap, to be more accurate. Leap. Leaping is higher than jumping. It sounds higher than jumping, doesn’t it? I’m going to have to practice leaping this week. Definitely.

With this one there’s nothing I can do to prepare. It’s just a matter of building enough adrenaline and bad-ass attitude to go for it.

Giddy up!

 

My Warrior Update #3

6 Feb

Feeling The Warrior take shape within my Guatemalan body, regardless of the chaos, it envelopes me … inch by inch.

I’m on about four hours sleep a night because the baby is teething and my son has the flu. I feel like the Un-Bionic Woman when I wake up.  I can find every excuse not to train, not to run, not to build muscle. There are plenty, including my son’s old Chicco Travel System Stroller that the baby currently uses. It’s not a racing, high-tech Ironman running stroller with an extra absorbent suspension system that provides a smooth lightweight ride. It’s clunky, you feel every pebble, and the front-right wheel desperately needs WD-40 every time I hit the track. But it holds babies up to 30 pounds, not that my kid is 30 pounds yet. But it works fine for walking the dog, not so much for running and keeping the baby asleep at the same time.

Every excuse crosses my mind, but then I think of the obstacles awaiting me on this 3.1 mile extravaganza, and I just grab the WD-40, my New Balance,  and hit the track. Conditioning and upper-body strength is a big part of this race, however they do throw a curve ball at you with a few obstacles that you can’t really prepare for, unless you watch the  Fear Factor or something.

Slithering Swamp. This little encounter says I am to “venture into unknown murky waters.” That’s it. I not a big fan of gloomy or obscure water. I think of the movie Stand By Me every time and I don’t want to end up like Gordie. Leeches suck, literally and figuratively. I think this will be the sprinting portion of the race for me. Flo Jo here I come.

Deadweight Drifter appears to be similar to Slithering Swamp, however they’ve decided to have me “trudge through waist-deep water and over logs.” Over logs being the key words here. This will be a challenge. I don’t think I can do this on land, let alone water. So I’ve taken to practice this hurdle and adding ankle weights, perhaps that will help my quads bust out of the water like an Navy SEAL.

Whatever the results, all I want to do is not eat it more than once in these murky waters. I don’t care about dirt under my fingernails, I was an athlete, a jock…but the George McFly in me just isn’t a fan of murky.

Giddy Up!