Before I went to the Warrior Dash on Saturday I was aware that it was a race with obstacles and I looked up those obstacles on YouTube to get a taste of what I was in for. Looking at some of the top times I decided there must be a bunch of slackers who run this and I wanted to crush them.
Manchild and I had a plan. We were going to sprint and run through all the areas we could run and then catch out breath on the obstacles. Sounds like a good plan right?
In order to properly execute this plan we needed to be in the front of the pack. Since it was a corral that you start in, we got in early, say about 30 mins before. Surprisingly, there were a lot of people there in the corral early.
As the race starts you have about a mile of trail running to get to the first obstacle. There are signs warning you that an obstacle is coming up. The first obstacle that I ran into was Road Rage, basically climbing all over old cars, followed immediately by running through tires. Tip: Run fast through the tires or you will fall. At this point my quads were saying no more. I am used to straight running not running and jumping but I was excited for the next obstacle which was Dead Weight Drifter. This one was fun, you were in about waist deep water (for me at least) and climbed over floating logs. Tip: Decide how you are going to get over the logs, dive over them, under them, throw one leg over at a time etc.
Next up was the Barricade Breakdown, climb over 3 foot wall, then climb under barbed wire. More killing for my quads since there were at least 5 walls to climb. Run to the next obstacle and I was relieved to see it involved arms, Great Warrior Wall. About a 10 foot wall with wooded “steps” and a rope to help you climb it. At this point I was catching up with the heat who had started in front of me and saw a lot of girls struggling with this part. I jumped on in to show them how it was done. Umm, or not. I got to the top but it was not as graceful as I had planned. Minor panic attack when I got to the top and looked down. Tip: Don’t look down.
The next obstacle looked a little crowded, it was the Chaotic Crossover, basically a cargo net that is horizontal that you need to climb across. I did not have a plan in mind for this obstacle so I looked around and apparently no one else did either. I got down on all fours and climbed across (the ropes were digging into my hands and knees and it was not fun), others tried walking across it and fell and some bear crawled across but it took them a long time. Tip: Don’t go across on your hands and knees.
Can you spot me in the middle picture? I am almost down to the bottom.
The picture with what looks likes beams is the Teetering Traverse, one of the easier obstacles…if you have balance. Tip: Don’t fall and be careful because it is slippery. The 3rd picture is something I did not see on the map. Surprise obstacle? I like it! Or I did like it until I realized that the first peg was too high and my little Moja legs didn’t reach 😦 Someone nearby told me I could skip it, I stared at them blankly (Do they not know who I am? I am a Marathon Maniac! There is no skipping in my book). So I stared at the cute boy next to me until he offered to give me a boost. Once I got to the top I realized I had to climb a rope to get down. This was challenging because the rope kept swinging and I was still wet from previous obstacles. Stupid tall people pretty much jumped down, ugh!
Up ahead I saw an obstacle approaching, Black Out, a tent low to the ground that you have to crawl through. Piece of cake, I got this, plus my short size can come into play. But umm holy hot in there. temperature was at least 20 degrees hotter in there. Tip: Keep moving, you do not want to stay in there too long.
Ok now this next part I am not sure if it was an obstacle or just part of the trail run but you run own a really steep hill and walk through chest deep “mud sludge” (waist deep for everyone else). People were complaining jumping in, were they not warned about getting dirty? I jumped right on it and ugh what is that smell? I am 90% sure that it was not just mud in that section. I tried to get out of there as fast as I could, it was gross! Ran through a couple more hills and easily climbed through Arachnaphobia.
At this point I could hear the band playing and the crowd cheering so I knew I was getting close to the end. Finally reached the Cargo Climb and knew my family was nearby, hopefully watching and snapping pictures. I went up and down the cargo nets as fast as I could. Jumped over 2 “raging” fires, no roasting this warrior and jumped into the last obstacle Muddy Mayhem. Muddy Mayhem you have to crawl through for the most part or you will end up getting caught in barbed wire (yes real barbed wire). Tip: DO NOT DIVE HEAD FIRST! There was an injury on Saturday that left some young guy paralyzed!
Moja’s finishing time :36:51, 42nd out of 1057 in my age group. 175 overall out of 5500+
Manchild’s finishing time: 30:00, 28th out of 1051 in his age group. 158 overall out of 5500+
My mom and Sister thought it was really funny how muddy I was. Even funnier that I had mud in my ARMPITS!
I swear Manchild was not even half as muddy as I was. I think he skipped some obstacles……
I was curious on how everyone was supposed to clean up after the race. I heard other races had firefighters (hubba hubba) who hosed them down or were provided with hoses. In Michigan the brought in these giant trucks that had water shooting out of them. The water was freezing cold and didn’t do much to get me clean. I was lucky to be able to get my hands clean.
Believe it or not these socks were white at the start of the race.
I am a WARRRIORRRRRRRRR!