by Elliot Megquier, Spartan Pro Team
In 2010 I graduated from college and was moved out of my parent’s house for the very first time. I was 21, a brand new second lieutenant in the US Army, and my childhood hobby and livelihood of playing soccer was over. I was still working out, but I was just maintaining my fitness for the Army, I had no goal or competition to work toward. While down at Fort Lee for my basic officer schooling, I was recruited for the post Army Ten Miler team. I started to enjoy running as before I just ran to train for soccer and for the army. I ran a great race in Washington DC and then I was off to Fort Drum, NY where I am now stationed. I met my buddy Ross Montfort and he got me into racing pretty much every weekend. First we ran road races, and then we graduated into trail races, and then finally obstacle races. In June 2011 I ran my first Spartan Race in Tuxedo, NY. I was hooked immediately. I had only run around four miles, but I was more worn out than I was after a 10 mile obstacle course that I ran with another company.
My buddy moved and I was looking for more adventure. I continued without him and started traveling all around New England to every Spartan Race being offered. And then I decided to start flying. The first year I basically would show up, not talk to anybody, race, and then leave. However, the more I started seeing the same people at races, the more I started opening up. By no means am I a social butterfly, but I now really enjoy the camaraderie as well as the competition. Now instead of staying in a hotel when I fly or travel to races, I prefer to stay with friends. Nothing is better than seeing how friends and fellow racers live and I enjoy eating their home cooking or at their favorite restaurants. I have raced in New York, Vermont, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Texas, Arizona, Virginia, California, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Las Vegas, Indiana, Colorado, and Montana. It is so exciting to be able to travel and experience different parts of the country.
Whether it is doing a pull up challenge in a Mexican bar in Glen Rose, getting Giordano’s deep dish pizza in Chicago, paddle boarding in Montana overlooking the Glacier National Park, riding horses in Texas, or climbing the mystic mountains of Vermont, my life has definitely changed in a positive way. Throughout college, when I wasn’t playing soccer, I would stay at home and do nothing more than running the same route in the neighborhood, surfing the internet, or watching TV/movies. I had no self-confidence and didn’t talk to girls that I was attracted to.
Now you’ll barely ever find me at my man cave (apartment), I have lots of confidence, and I am starting to talk to the beautiful women of Sparta. It’s been a fun journey so far, it gets me through the work week, and gives me something to look forward to practically every weekend. I have now done 40 Spartan Races and I still can’t wait for the next one. Funny how being a part of an obstacle racing series can change your life.