By Spartan Pro Team Member: Amelia Boone

It may be short, but don’t call it sweet. There’s nothing quite like the Pacific Northwest, and this weekend all eyes will be on Washougal, WA, as Spartan hosts the Pacific Northwest Spartan Sprint for the third year running.

In previous years, the 3ish-mile, 15-20 obstacle course has been an all-out sprint for the Elite waves, with top finishing times last year in the mid-30 minute range. With an expected length of 4.75 miles this year, what twists and turns and added terrain can we expect from Spartan? Set on one of the most gorgeous motocross courses in the nation, the single track hills and short climbs will test racers legs and lungs.The legendary uphill barbed wire crawl will likely be out in full force, as well as the obstacle gauntlet at the finish line.

Barbedwire Crawl Sprint PacNW Spartan Race Washington WashougalSet to be the third Spartan Race special to be aired on NBC Sports, competition will be stiff as the Elite waves grapple for standing heading into the World Championship. On the men’s side, it looks to be a repeat battle from Pennsylvania a few weeks back, with John Yatsko, Brakken Kraker, and Matt Novakovich squaring off again, with the addition of the newest Spartan Pro Team member, local Chad Trammell, looking to chase them down. For the women, Spartan Pro Team members (and all with Northwest roots) Rose Wetzel-Sinnett, Amelia Boone, Tiffanie Novakovich and Jenny Tobin look to duke it out. All are familiar with this terrain, with this race last year being Rose’s first foray into the beginning of her domination on the Spartan circuit.

Because of the filming, all racers should note that the men’s elite wave will run at 7:30am, and the women will head off at 8:30am. No other waves will be affected.

As always, we’ll see you at the finish line. 

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After years of waiting, Washington, DC will finally host a Spartan Race. Well, actually, Maryland will, but the District is buzzing about the opportunity to compete in the “Washington, DC Spartan Sprint.”

The only other time DC had a race this close was the 2012 Super Spartan in Leesburg, VA, an extra long, 10.5-mile course featuring a 400 meter tractor pull and a mile that contained over 30 horse hurdles.

David Magida will look to add to his podium count.

The course this weekend, however, should be quite different. Hosted in Charlotte Hall, MD, the 4-5 mile course is expected to be hot, hilly and full of trail running. But if you’re reading this hoping for some clues as to what to expect this week, don’t hold your breath. Whether we get the twists of a super long tractor pull, an extended log carry, or even a surprise bucket brigade at the end of the course, like we had in Pennsylvania, is to be determined. At Spartan Race, prepare for the unexpected.

The one thing you can expect, of course, is top-notch competition. And this race is no exception. On the women’s side, look for up-and-coming stars Orla Walsh and Corinna Coffin to battle it out for victory. On the men’s side, Brakken Kraker, Elliott Megquier and Kevin Donoghue are prepared to challenge for the win. Stephen Vassallo, fresh off his 3rd place finish on Sunday in Pennsylvania, will be looking to contend for another spot on the podium. And look for DC local David Magida, the champion on Saturday and Sunday from the Atlanta race, to shoot for another victory on his home turf.

After the race Magida will be running the course again with Team Elevate, a group of Spartan Training clients from his Washington, DC training facility, Elevate Interval Fitness, who have spent the last three months preparing with him for this event. For most of them, this will be their first Spartan Race, but they have embraced the challenge and are eager to prove themselves and earn the title of “Spartan.”

Have what it takes to become a Spartan? Sign up now! And check out Spartan Coaching in your area!

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Would it be fair to assume that having the opportunity to get something extra is a good thing?

Say, you expect ABC, but all of a sudden, D, E and F are there, wouldn’t you want to try those, too? Well Spartan Race believes that offering just that little bit more is something that all Spartan racers would like to embrace, and as such, we’re adding dates to already existing venues.

In September, when we come to Chicago, we’ll have a Super and a Sprint over that weekend. In October when we visit Carolinas, there’ll be a Sprint and a Beast. 

But that’s not all. Sacramento has a Sprint as well as a Super and we’ve also added another date to the event in Dallas. There’ll be a Beast and a Sprint for you to get your teeth stuck into. Go on! Take a bite!

Here are the updated races:

Chicago – September 27th – Super
Chicago – September 28th – Sprint

Carolinas – October 25th – Beast
Carolinas – October 26th – Super

Sacramento – October 25th – Super
Sacramento – October 26th – Sprint

Dallas – November 1st – Beast
Dallas – November 2nd – Sprint

If you needed more options to fulfill your Trifecta, then this will help you. Perhaps you’re even aiming a little higher? Some of you are going for Double and even Triple Trifectas! We can only stand back and admire the tenacity and focus you seem to possess. AROO!

With the addition of these extra races, you can now convince family and friends that feel they might not be ready for a Super or a Beast, to try out a Sprint. Once that mud and water hits their legs and the dirt goes under the fingernails, they’ll understand what you already know.

Why not run with these first timers and guide them along?

Click on any of the links above and sign up today for extra races and the opportunity to not only get more race time under your belt, but more medals, more mud and perhaps best of all, the chance to run with someone and finally introduce them to something you could never explain with words.

Sometimes you just have to get under that barbed wire or up that rope to truly understand. Of course, there’s one sure fire way of “getting it.” You’ll know at the finish line.

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By Pro Team Member Tiffanie Novakovich

One of the main aspects of the Spartan Race that is hammered home time after time is that if you choose to take part, you should expect the unexpected. You can watch past videos, you can check out the dozens of online photo albums and you could even talk to experienced racers. It will give you a vague idea of what to expect. Bring those expectations to the start line and you’ll immediately be on the back foot. If the race isn’t what you were expecting, the terrain wasn’t what you thought it would be or the obstacles are not how you envisioned them, you were not prepared for the unexpected.

Bearing that in mind, the inaugural Connecticut Spartan event, held in the beautiful town of Uncasville, is now in the books, with medals around the necks of thousands of competitors.  Hosted at the Mohegan Sun Hotel and Casino, the race seemed to stay more true to the resort’s lavish atmosphere, with just a modicum of Spartan torture.

The course started and ended in the resort parking lot, between zig-zagging through the parking garage, along flat stretches of small-town streets and highways, and through picturesque leaf-covered trails.  The course was mostly flat and favored speed runners, totally flying in the face of some events where mountains, hills and incline after painful incline tested the Spartans.

However,  many staple Spartan obstacles were present, including over & under walls, tire flip, atlas carry, rope climb, slick wall, barbed wire, herculean hoist, and traverse wall. Conspicuously absent was mud!  The barbed wire crawl was shorter than what is considered “normal” and was on grass. This surprised many racers who thought they knew what to expect. The water pits under the rope climb and the slick wall were lined with tarps, preventing any grime on the rope or mud in the eyes obstacles.

The course was no cake-walk though. The sand in the buckets/bags at the Herculean Hoist was saturated with water, making the obstacle significantly and surprisingly heavier than usual.  Several top racers failed this usually doable obstacle, resulting in unexpected burpees near the end of the race. Complacency and thinking you know what to expect again catching people out.

In the end, racers enjoyed a spectacular scenery in a beautiful place, but were still tested to their limits on a course that was a little different than most Spartan events, but just as grueling. In the men’s elite race, Matthew Kempson ran away with a narrow victory of only 7 seconds over Junyong Pak. Elliott Megquier completed the podium in third place. On the women’s side, Elise Fugowski bested the field by over two minutes, with Karlee Whipple finishing second and Orla Walsh in third.

As with all Spartan races, you never know what you might or might not encounter when you sign up, show up and never give up.

But one thing’s for sure: You’ll know at the finish line!

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Arguably one of the most anticipated, popular, and well-visited venues of the Spartan Race calendar is the glorious surroundings of Vail Lake, Temecula in Southern California. Boasting not only mountains and hills that simply refuse to quit, but a range of different types of terrain that will constantly keep you guessing. It’s the ideal place to test Spartans that are serious about their goals. Rocky trails, brush trails, sand, grass, swampy areas, even the beautiful lake from which it takes its name; even if you think you know the venue, it will always throw up surprises to make sure you don’t  – or can’t – become comfortable. Best of all, while all of this is going on, the famous Californian sun will kiss you while those wine valley zephyrs dance over your skin.

Running across the landscape of Temecula is a joy.

But priorities for the travelling Spartan are, as always the first thing one must consider – accommodation. Good rest the day before. Temecula is nestled north of San Diego, but much closer, you’ll find that it’s sandwiched between Hemet and Escondido. As such, you have the choice of three places all well within spitting distance of the venue that has ample parking, regardless of whether you are aiming for the Beast on Saturday or the Sprint on Sunday. Maybe you’re considering the 12-Hour Hurricane Heat. Either way, you’re covered.

One thing that is a nailed-down certainty is that after burning hundreds and possibly thousands of calories over the picturesque scenery, you’ll want to eat heartily .Thankfully, Temecula has more than its fair share of restaurants and diners. But as any knowledgeable Spartan will appreciate, Temecula is famous for something a little different. Set in the heartland of wine country, it would be remiss to not sample what it has to offer. When in Rome, as the expression goes. There are many places to see and visit in the area and thankfully, what could be a wealth of information that actually saturates to the point of confusion, is actually neatly arranged in this website right here. Check out the various activities, too, as well as places to stay, eat, and of course, tickle those taste buds with a nice glass of wine or two.

Of course, if wine isn’t your thing and you much prefer shorts, or maybe just a good old-fashioned beer, there are a wide range of places where your thirst can be quenched. Check out the range of places right here and choose which sounds best to you, based upon the reviews of past patrons and customers.  If you’d prefer to keep up with the big game, there are a range of Sports bars, too. Maybe you just want to shake your stuff after claiming your finishers medal and who could blame you? Check out this link for places to celebrate at. The folk of Temecula like to party, so why not join in with the festivities?

Temecula encompasses all types of terrain.

Regardless of whether you prefer the grape or the grain, the responsibility of any Spartan remains the same. If you’re drinking, don’t drive. Use one of the taxis in the area that will make sure you get back to your accommodation safely and without being a bother to road users or pedestrians alike. Remember that when you wear that finishers shirt, you set an example that other athletes look up to!

Remember that Temecula is renowned for having those warm winds whip up the sides of those hills, bringing the sand and dust with it, so prepare for a long, warm, dry race. Consider wearing a camelback as, while there will be water stations, some folk may find the need for more fluids than others. Remember to never leave a fellow racer wanting. Share fluids, gels and salt packets. No Spartan left behind.

See you at the finish line!

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By Elite Spartan Racer Cody Moat

Hills that don’t quit? Check. Relentless sun baking the venue? Check? Breathtaking scenery from the tops of aforementioned hills? Absolutely. The occasional curve ball thrown in to keep Spartan racers on their toes? Ah yes – we must be in Utah again.

Spartan Race’s annual visit to Soldier Hollow – venue of the 2002 Olympic Winter Games – is always a red letter day on the Spartan calender, so it’s no surprise to see the event village and starting corral heaving with smiling faces, fists in the air and the echoes of “AROO!” reverberating around the hills.

Cody Moat is all smiles at the start line.

The Utah Beast started with a bang when John Yatsko started fast from the beginning. I knew he was going to go out fast and push the pace because that’s the way he likes to race. I was happy that I would be able to go out fast without having to push the pace myself. So I started out on John’s shoulder and within the first mile we had started up the mountain and had gotten a substantial lead on the field. I knew judging from the pace that it would be a battle the whole way.
And it was a battle through the first 4-5 miles at-least up until we hit the spear throw. John came into the spear throw first and picked up the spear and hit. I think maybe I was too concerned about whether he would hit or miss instead of about my own spear throwing or maybe I was a little  over-confident. My spear grazed the edge of the hay bale and broke out without sticking. So I did burpees while John ran away unscathed. Then throughout the rest of the race, John and I stayed pretty equal the whole way. So what should have been a great race was quickly turned sour with the spear throw. John finished in 1:41. and I finished in 1:43 and 3rd place went to Glenn Racz, who also brought an incredible element to the race. I would like to congratulate John Yatsko on an incredible victory.

The female elites also saw a dramatic race, with Alex Roudayna de la Huerta Susilla eventually managing to get a 3 minute gap on Rose Wetzell-Sinnet, with Jenny Tobin grabbing a well-deserved 3rd place after running an awesome race. With so many ebbs and flows in the race, it was hard to see a winner at certain sections throughout the race.

In the event village, it was all about the green medal, as some were proudly displaying their first and in some cases, their second Trifecta of the year. Muddy high-fives all around, as well as the obligatory muddy hugs. For some, it was their first time at a Spartan Race and choosing to start with the Utah Beast is a commendable feat. One racers at the finish line were overheard saying, “I’m broken and my body hates me, but I feel fantastic. How does that even work?”

As ever, the Spartans of the future rocked their stuff with a testing Kids Race. With the younger Spartans in the community growing ever more excited about emulating what they see from the adults, it’s comforting to know that there is another generation of  those pushing themselves.

I would like to thank Spartan for putting on such a great event.

See you at the next Spartan Race! 

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Spartans like a challenge. Of that, there is no doubt. That’s why you are here, reading this page and preparing yourself mentally and physically for the next race. Spartan Race will always continue to push boundaries and that’s why we’re challenging those who are aiming for a Trifecta, to do it in one day.

That’s right. Think you can run a Beast, a Super and a Sprint all in one day? Then Ohio is the location for you. Held at The Wilds Safari Park and Conservation Centre, the terrain will not only be testing, but beautiful, too.

As you grapple with the obstacles and gnarly surfaces with that goal in mind, stay focused and that holy grail of a Trifecta in a day could be yours! If you need a heads-up of the day, here’s a full guide of what’s in store and how you can set about tackling what could be a very exhausting day for you. But that’s what the training is for, right?

Naturally, planning is key. Establish yourself a base at one of the many hotels and places of accommodation Columbus has to offer. Expedia has a great site that means you can filter your search to best suit your needs. Additionally, it also lists local points of interest, should the inclination take you to visit some historic landmarks or other places to see.

The venue is only a short car ride away from the city of Columbus, whether it be your own vehicle, taxi or hire car. Despite the huge sprawling event area, the road and traffic network in the area is very good. Naturally, the taxi option will also come in very useful for when you accept that free beer at the finish line! Spartans don’t drink and drive; they set an example!

Regardless of whether you feel like attacking the Trifecta or not, one decision that you may like to consider is making a longer stay of the area. Columbus is teeming with life and vibrancy and it would well be worth taking in another day or two to take in this beautiful city.

Dining isn’t an issue as restaurants are heavy in number and the range of choices is wide. By using this site put out by Urban Spoon, you can adjust your search to the specifics that tickle your fancy. Whether it be a steakhouse, pizza or one of the many vegetarian or vegan options, there is something to satisfy everyone’s palate.

Of course, celebrating your finish – or finishes, as the case may be – is only natural, so it will be useful to take note of the reviews on Yelp in the area. Find a bar near your hotel or wherever you are staying and you can check out the nearest and most reasonable or appealing settings to toast your latest addition to the medal hanger.

But the adults can’t have all the fun. If the kids are with you and still have energy to burn up after conquering the Kids Race, why not treat them to a visit to one of the amusement parks in the area? Fun for all the family and a pretty sure-fire way to get them exhausted for the evening, meaning you get a good night’s sleep!

Of course, you may be without children or younger ones, which means that if bars and other types of nightlife aren’t your thing, you could always see if Lady Luck is by your side and check out a casino. Remember to gamble responsibly! But when all is said and done, if you’ve finished a Spartan Race, it’s pretty much a guarantee that your body will by a little sore and you may have developed all manner of knots and pulls in those muscles. Why not treat yourself to a massage? Crossing a Spartan Race finish line is an award in itself, but why not indulge yourself with a prize of a nice, long pampering? You know you deserve it!

Whatever you decide to do at Ohio in terms of taking on all three levels, or whether you are happy with less than that, have a great time, watch your footing and we’ll see you at the finish line!

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Could there possibly be a more glorious background for a stadium Spartan Sprint in the US?

When you’re on the course, you can drink in the view of the San Francisco Bay to the east, historic Alcatraz to the North and the epic Golden Gate Bridge a little over 2 miles away. You’d have to pinch yourself to remind you that you’re on the clock. You’re being timed, so savor it by all means, but keep moving!

Getting ready for this race will have you making sure that steps – lots and lots of climbing steps – will be part of your on-going training. Aside from that, we won’t tell you a great deal other than to be ready for the usual and perhaps the not-so usual Spartan shenanigans. Spartans are prepared for anything!

This will be a fantastic opportunity to visit the beautiful city of San Francisco and naturally, for those that are planning a road trip, accommodation is the first point of order, so make sure to hit up TripAdvisor’s list of around 240 hotels in the area. Be sure to refine your search to the means that suit you best. Whether it be a cheap and cheerful stay or whether you think you deserve something a little more luxurious, there’ll be something there for you.

Don’t worry too much about getting around. The metro system will look after you as well as the thousands of taxis in the city. Of course, Joe would expect you to jog to the venue. Spartan up, folks!

But what and where to eat? All those obstacles, steps and perhaps just a few burpees are going to make you hungry. The second dilemma is choosing which of the hundreds of eateries there are in the area will be the ones to feed you. The choice is staggering, so it comes as a very welcome relief that the San Francisco Chronicle has compiled the best 100 places to dine. Check here and you’ll be pleased to see that the restaurants listed include extremely affordable choices, ranging from American to Mexican, Italian to French and even some off-the-beaten-track options like Moroccan and Scandinavian.

Naturally, as a failsafe, one website to keep handy is this one put out by the city themselves. Having handy tabs to use regarding food, accommodation, travel and most things in between, it’s very useful to have. Make a note of it!

While you are there, can you give up the chance to visit the Golden Gate Bridge? Tours are available and any self-respecting selfie fan should surely have this ticked off the list.

And surely any movie buff will want to check out the historic movie scenes and locations. Naturally, Bullitt with Steve McQueen springs to mind. Or how about Mrs Doubtfire – everyone’s favorite scary cross-dressing Irish nanny? Many other films used San Francisco as their backdrop, so be sure to check them out here.

Naturally, two films used the very real location of Alcatraz (“Escape From Alcatraz” and “The Birdman Of Alcatraz”) and if your itinerary includes the time, then you should visit Alcatraz Island. There are many boat tours available.

No visit to San Francisco could be complete without checking two of the most famous streets in America, namely, Filbert Street and Lombard Street. You’ve seen them many times on T.V., why not check them out? Try running up Filbert Street. See how you get on.

Just in case you would like to take in a musical legend while you are there, Tom Petty plays San Francisco the same weekend. See here.

All in all, there is so much to do and so much to see that you’ll rue that there’s only so many hours in a day. One thing we can assure you of is that we’ll be sure to see you at the finish line…

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On July 26th, the Spartan Race empire will descend on Washington DC, bringing with it barbed wire, fire and a whole lot of pain. Given that we’ll be in the nation’s capital, we thought we’d make it a little more interesting. Not content with pushing racers around a course that will inevitably lead to burpees by way of all manner of horrific obstacles, the course is set to be on a motorcross stage. That’s right. What normally requires a motorbike will be done by thousands of crazy individuals using only their bodies. You didn’t expect this to be easy now, did you?

Set in the grounds of the Wicomico Motorsports Park, you should be ready for terrain that simply won’t leave you alone. It’ll be harsh, uneven and almost certainly muddy. This is what we do, so if this will be your first race, get used to it very quickly, as while it’ll beat you down, you’ll want to do it all over again when you finish. Spartan Races have an odd habit of doing that.

Wicomico: Hopefully your engine will be comparable.

Remember that while the course will of course have water stations, you will want to prepare yourself with fluids and sunscreen. Washington DC has a habit of hitting the 90’s in July, so please consider some kind of lotion and hat. Those of you with devices that hold water like packs or belts will certainly want to make use of them. There is a little shading by way of the trees, but don’t count on them being part of the course. We may use those trails, we may not. You’ll find out on the day.

For those wishing to make a road trip to what will be a very exciting event, the first priority would have to be that of accommodation. Thankfully, well within driving distance is the great city of Washington and booking.com have very neatly organized a list of hotels and places to stay that mean you can rest up before and after putting yourself through some Hellish miles of barbed wire, rocks, ropes and fires. On offer are hostels with prices as low as $24, right through to the somewhat more spacious and luxurious hotels that carry a weightier price tag.

If you’re flying in and need a rental car, this a full and comprehensive list of options laid out very easily by expedia.com right here, so you may like to check that out if you plan to make a long weekend of your stay. Frankly, why wouldn’t you? With so much history, it would be a missed opportunity if you failed to take in some of the more famous sights and monuments in Washington. The Capitol Building, The Jefferson Memorial, The Lincoln Memorial, The Vietnam Veterans Memorial, The Washington Monument and of course The White House. There are many other places to visit and see, so check out links like this one from factmonster or this one from traveltips. Naturally, if you’re with the kids, they’re going to need something that’ll stimulate them as much as the Spartan Kids Race.

History oozes from the very pores of Washington.

Water Parks, County Fairs, outdoor recreation like zip lining and rope courses can all be found within the area. Click here for a guide put together by about.com to keep the little ones amused while the parents or guardians can also join in, should they want to. How much energy are you going to have spare after tearing up the course, anyway?

When it comes to grabbing a bite to eat, why gamble on something that might not be as good as it looks and let the locals help you. With a thorough and complete guide – with reviews – of restaurants in all the boroughs, there’s almost certainly going to be something there for you.

So, continue with your training (you’re going to need it) and we’ll see you in Washington for the Sprint.

See you at the finish line!

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Nestled in the bossom of the Mountain Creek Waterpark, set in the midst of 167 acres of glorious woodland trails, is the setting for the New Jersey Super Spartan.

Hopefully your training will have included gnarly terrain on trails that will take in uneven ground, and you can appreciate that delightful way in which sunlight will shine a beam between the leaves and hit you just when you don’t expect it.

Last year provided us with one of the most intense finishes to date, when David Magida edged out Alec Blenis by a mere 12 seconds over the unforgiving course. Alec quickly coming back for revenge and taking the top spot the following day with Elliott Megquir and Brain Hoover claiming the remaining podium spots. Could this year be closer? Elise Fugowski made sure her name was heard by winning the lady’s Saturday title, with the ever-dangerous Debbie Moreau winning on Sunday. With training regimes more demanding and with more intensity than ever, and more and more competition making their own elbow room, it looks set to be another exciting race.

Naturally, it wouldn’t be the same without a mountain to climb, so you’ll be pleased to hear that Mountain Creek has an elevation of 1,480ft. That’s more than ample to get those legs roasting nicely. Make sure the muscle memory is finely tuned for that one. It’s also good to know that there isn’t just one mountain waiting for you. All four peaks are as welcoming as the one before, but the question is, “how many will there be on the course?” That will be something you’ll find out on the day, of course. You didn’t actually think we were going to tell you, did you?

Getting to the venue is in itself very easy.

From Central NJ:
Take the Garden State Parkway to exit 153 to Rt. 3 West.
Take Rt. 46 West to Rt. 23 North.
Exit on the right on Rt. 515 North to Rt. 94 South to Mountain Creek.

From NYC: 
Take the Lincoln Tunnel to Rt. 3 West to Rt. 46 West.
Take Rt. 23 North from Rt. 46 West.
Exit on the right on Rt. 515 North to Rt. 94 South to Mountain Creek.

From Philadelphia:
Take the NJ Turnpike to Exit 10 for Rt. 287
North.Take Rt. 23 North up to Rt. 515 North.
From Rt. 515, take Rt. 94 South to Mountain Creek.

From Long Island & NYC:
Take the George Washington Bridge to Rt. 80 West.
Merge onto Rt. 23 North.
Take Rt. 515 North to Rt. 94 South to Mountain Creek.

For those wishing to rest their bones who aren’t local to the area, there are two hotels (Alpine Haus and Quality Inn near Mountain Creek in Vernon) which are conveniently situated on the doorstep of the venue. If those locations don’t suit your fancy, thankfully there are a range of other places to stay with only minimal driving or transportation to consider. Expedia lists over 60 places within easy reach of the venue, so there will be plenty of choice for the traveler.

One place of note is the Crystal Golf Resort. Not just for the accommodation and experience, but also noteworthy is their decadent spa, specifically the wonderful  massages that are available. Tired muscles after a Spartan Race will always appreciate the soreness rubbed away, so this is always an option worth considering. Check out the resort website right here and you’ll see the vast array of services they offer.

If you still haven’t had your fill of excitement, and you’re some kind of adrenalin-crazed super-human, then Zoom Ziplines may be the answer to your excess energy! With four ziplines ranging from 200ft to 1,500ft, you’ll not only get great panoramic views, but some amazing selfies for your Instagram account.

Of course, away from the hurly-burly, there’s also something for the more relaxed soul. There’s the Tunis-Ellicks Historic House & Museum which is guaranteed to quench even the fiercest thirst for knowledge. The circa 1800 Tunis-Ellicks House, building, historic gardens, and museum collection welcomes visitors searching to gain a sense of daily life in a representative New Jersey farming community. The house is encircled by an authentic re-creation of an 1800 parlor garden, and contains more than 120 varieties of herbs and perennials. Just be sure to call the number on the web page prior to your visit.

Despite the small localized area, there are still a wide range of places to dine. Italian, Chinese, BBQ, or even good old fashioned American style, a selection put together by Tripadvisor right here will happily point you in the right direction for something delicious to eat.

If driving is not your thing, say for example, you’d like a cocktail or beer and would prefer to let a taxi take care of you, the Yellow Pages lists several companies serving the Vernon area. Remember, Spartans don’t drink and drive, so let someone else take the wheel.

And when it comes to somewhere to drink and be merry, Yelp is always a useful asset in making sure you find a place that suits your purposes, and perhaps even the style of surroundings that you’d prefer while relaxing with a drink.

Naturally, driving oneself can sometimes be a little quicker, so if you’d like to take care of yourself in that regard, plus perhaps exploring the local area, Roadside America has a page for you that lists some places that can help you in hiring a vehicle.

Vernon has its own website which offers an overview of the area by listing local attractions, things to see and do, as well as places to stay, eat and drink should other sites have mistakenly missed them. In such a beautiful area of the country, it would always be a good idea to drink in the surroundings, and not just see the metaphorical roses, but smell them too.

Being this close to New York may mean that some of you might wish to make the short 60 mile journey to The Big Apple to check that visit off the bucket list. If you need a heads-up of things to do or places to see, Spartan Race has already compiled a quick overview of the city right here, so be sure to check that out and we’ll see you at the finish line.

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