by Jeremy Bongiovanni
I think I can officially call myself a Spartan after this weekend’s race in Tuxedo, NY… That was definitely a challenge, but so much fun! There is some odd joy that comes out of completing one of the most physically difficult tasks you’ve ever done, but I love that feeling! This obstacle course was about 5 miles, mostly uphills and downhills, with around 20-25 obstacles, most of them pretty difficult too! I found myself struggling, but it was a good struggle. I felt challenged, and I immediately felt like I wanted to do that again so I signed up for the 8-mile Super Spartan! I can officially say I’m also addicted to the Spartan Race. It’s one of those experiences that you won’t get anywhere else—the camaraderie, even with people you don’t know, the challenges, the joy, the adrenaline rush, you can’t find all of that everywhere! Some may think you’re crazy, but when you come home with those cuts and bruises (and yes you will get a few), you have a reason to show off, and be proud of it! You have just completed something not many people can say they have. I highly suggest getting out there and trying this too. You will get to that starting corral and just feel so much more alive than you ever have! I also highly suggest bringing friends—it enhances the experience so much more to share it with others.
I have done two Spartan Races – the first one at Citi Field and the second in Tuxedo, NY, but the second time I was alone. It definitely is a lot more challenging to be alone, but you can go at your own pace, which some people enjoy. I enjoyed the camaraderie of the first time, so I would suggest bringing a few friends. Plus, if you’re 21, you can share a few beers afterward! The races themselves were very different—Tuxedo, NY was much more cardio based, with a lot more brute strength involved. I should warn you, if you sign up for any Spartan Race, no matter what distance, you will end up running a lot more.
In a stadium, the issue is that the space is smaller, so there is no mud and less running, but still a great experience! It’s not often that you can say you’ve run on the field that a big MLB team plays on! Spartan Race hosts their races on these fields from time to time, but more often than not, they will be in the middle of nowhere so everyone can experience a true Spartan Race, mud and all. I am planning on working my way up to a Spartan Beast to complete a Trifecta (all three levels in one year), so wish me luck! I hope I can finish with a good time at each, or even survive them! I’m excited though, and I know with a little training (well, a lot of training), I can do this, and I know all of you out there can too!
I recommend signing up for the Spartan WOD’s – www.spartanrace.com/wod. These are very helpful training tools to add on or use as your workout for the day. And if you want a free race, you can always volunteer at a race and choose to race at any race you’d like for free! I’d highly suggest this, as I have done this as well. It’s also a good way to meet new racers if you ever want a racing buddy for the future! Anyways, good luck in future racers, and I hope you all get out there and race like a Spartan! Spartan Races – getting people off their couches and into Spartan shape since 431 B.C.