We survived the Warrior Dash. Surprisingly, it wasn’t bad at all. I read a lot of different accounts on what to expect at the Warrior Dash, but I really wasn’t prepared. So, I thought I’d share the whole truth about the obstacle course / 5K race from start to finish.
- Parking: Well sure, you could pay $20 to park in the “official” parking area (the muddy-by-the-end-of-the-day high school) and wait for a shuttle (school bus) to take you to the event OR you could drive really close and park in a neighbor’s yard and pay $10. When you’re standing in line waiting for the bus, drenching wet, and covered in mud in the cold…you’ll understand why I made this point. You decide.
- For all you competitive runners, you will probably understand that the need to potty always seems to occur before a race. Even if it’s just a little tinkle, I must try…I mean MUST. So some of you will also feel my pain, when the urge strikes…you know what I’m talking about…number 2. So I suck it up and decide to go for the porta-potty kingdom. I’m in line with all the others, feeling slightly like cattle or sheep when I notice there is a vacant potty that everyone is avoiding. Not just avoiding – I’m observing those who go, open the door, and shut it back. I am not one of those people who must see for myself – I learn from observation. So I finally get a vacant potty. I go in, and it’s surprisingly clean and smelling of cinnamon – really! But alas, I don’t see how anyone could “go” with “gangnam style” blasting loudly on the speakers outside in the party section. Failed attempt….it’s gonna hafta wait.
- Now some of you have seen the pictures and know that there are crazy outfits that present themselves at the Warrior Dash or any race for that matter. Superman, Batman, and even Winnie-the-Pooh were there. But for the love of everything holy, ladies please remember this: just because they make it in your size, does not mean you should wear it. Further, the size you think you are may not be the size you actually are. I’m just trying to help you (and the public) out.
- As to the race itself, I felt good about it. I learned a few things about my newly found weight loss and myself. Those bony knees are gonna need some knee pads next time around. Crawling through gooey mud was one thing, but crawling through rocks, grass, gravel – well just take a look at my poor knees. If you see any hairs I missed shaving, get over it – I’m still learning how to shave without fat lol!
- Probably the most critical thing I learned about myself during this race was that I have relied too heavily on my fat to help me swim in the past. We had to go through a cow pond (yes, cows do crap in the pond) for one of the obstacles. There was a flotation device about midway through. Basically, you had to swim to the floatation platform, climb up, walk to the other side, and the swim to the other edge of the pond. I start walking in this pond towards the flotation device, and then decide to swim to get there faster. As I start swimming, some other yahoo in the race grabs my leg and I’m convinced he’s going to drown me. I start kicking…hoping to kick him in the head, and I finally reach the platform. I realize at this point that there is no way I can even imagine hauling myself up on this platform. My hero, Jimi, pulls me up out of the water with one arm – hee hee I love him I walk to the other side with relatively no major problems, but I realize there are just way too many people in this pond. I find a spot to get in the water while still holding the platform. The water is over my head. In the past (when I was overweight) I could float with ease. I could lie on my back, cross my ankles, and even cross my arms and stay afloat. It was a cinch. Back to the Warrior Dash – I decide to lie on my back and float and maneuver myself to the other side. As I began, I quickly realized that my two natural flotation devices that I used to own have shrunken quite considerably and are no longer able to keep the rest of my body up. So I flipped over thinking I’m going to die and dog paddled for my life trying desperately to reach the edge of the pond. Just when I’m about to sink and get my mouth in that filthy water, I touch the bottom and walk on in. Hallelujah! I did it!
After that cow pond, nothing could hold me back. I climbed up the rope course, crawled through yet another muddy trench, passed another drunk guy puking, jumped the fire pits like an Olympic hurdler, and crossed the finish line all while hearing the sounds of “Chariots of Fire” playing in my head. It was a good way to spend an hour and 7 minutes Gotta go…that urge I was talking about earlier came back!