I’ve been training for the past couple of months for the Gladiator Rock n Run event held at the Pasadena Rose Bowl on Saturday October 6, 2012. The event raised money for a great cause : TACA- Talk About Curing Autism. You could also donate your running shoes after the race- which is exactly what I did 🙂 I originally found out about this race through a Groupon deal that I quickly sent to my good friend Rachel and said = LET’S DO IT! I’ve ran 2 5K’s already this year- but this one was going to be VERY different.
I definitely needed to train more for this type of event. Besides running, there were multiple obstacles we’d have to overcome throughout the course. My training encompassed hardcore workouts at the fire department up the street from my house (lots of CrossFit activities), group workouts at the high school track, continuing pure barre classes to keep my muscles strong, and then my regular gym routine. (The training helped A LOT!)
Let me tell you a little more about the event- we signed up for the 5K – but there is also a 10K option as well (probably will do that one next year). In the midst of running 5K, you have to overcome 14 obstacles which included: running the stairs inside the famous Rose Bowl stadium, crawling through thick mud into metal tubes, concurring a tire mountain, climbing a 14 ft rope and ringing a bell, a polar plunge into freezing chest deep water, climbing in and out of dumpsters, crawling under barbed wire through a mud pit on our stomachs, carrying a 40lb bag of rice 40 yards, monkey bars, up and over a huge cargo net, and a tilted wall rope pull over. Basically some crazy obstacles! You can see the course here.
My great friend Rachel Barker, writer of LoveFitLife, and I rocked our Black Swan/Pink Flamingo tu-tus and sports bras as our costumes for the race. You can check Rachel’s blog for some in-depth details about our trainings! We had a couple of friends who trained with us as well, Nick and Nicole, who ran the 10K before us- they sported awesome gladiator and fairy costumes! We all met up at the finish line and enjoyed our free beer for completing the race. It may seem silly to drink a beer right after a big run, but it’s actually a good way to get carbs lost from the exercise.
The hardest part of the race definitely was the stairs in the Rose Bowl at the beginning (mostly because of the weird high height of the stairs), and the polar plunge where your body literally feels like it is shutting down. But the most important part is that I didn’t give up (although my hands were so slippery on the monkey bars I couldn’t go all the way across without slipping- but I tried enough times to make up the same amount of bars in the obstacle- so I’m ok with that :P). The final obstacle was supposed to be the hardest and encourage teamwork. It was a slanted wall with only a thin rope to help pull you up and over. Although, after 100’s of people covered in mud went before us, the wall was slippery than ever. Happily I will confess that both Rachel and I climbed over that wall all on our OWN on our FIRST try! We saw so many “macho” men try and fail and try and fail this obstacle. I’m so proud of us for kicking butt 🙂
Rachel and I crossed the finish line together- hands up in the air and smiling 😀
– OVERALL: Finished 353 out of 1622 (top 4.5%)
Our time was 1 hour and 4 mins- which rounds out to about 20 mins/mile divided by 14 obstacles..not too bad. This kind of race was not something you focused on finishing under a certain time- it was more about team work with helping others out with the more difficult obstacles to overcome. I’m so thankful to have finished uninjured and to have had both our mom’s in the crowd cheering us on! Although, I’ve got some great bruises and scratches on my knee the day after the race- I’ll wear these battle wounds proudly!
I encourage all of you to try something new- and give it all you’ve got! You really do never know until you try. Have faith in yourself and you will accomplish whatever you please.
I ran, I climbed, I crawled, I conquered.