by Carrie Adams

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Alyssa Tokorcheck has some new hardware to add to her collection.  She took home a second place overall finisher sword from the Carolina’s Beast on Saturday while rocking the Spartan Chicked gear.  Traveling to the Carolinas from PA with a team of athletes from her home gym, Hybrid Athlete,  this isn’t the first time Tokorcheck has traveled for a Spartan Race but it was her first top three finish and this Spartan Chick trains hard for her success. 

Alyssa was part of the first Spartan Beast in Vermont in 2011 running alongside three of her friends (myself included.)  Her domination of the Carolina’s Sprint comes as no surprise to those who train with her at the Hybrid Athlete facility in top ten finishes for ALL of the athletes that traveled South for the event that included Tokorcheck, Mike Russell, Youssef Mkwi, Brian Teyssier, Nikki Hurtack, and Jodie Kathleen. 

Tokorcheck has also completed her first ultra this year and plans on applying for the Ultra Beast this year in Vermont.  Of her Carolina’s finish she says, “I’m still pinching myself, honestly.  I didn’t go into the race with very high expectations because I had to take almost four months off from running after the knee injury I got at the ultra.” 

During the race, Alyssa focused on keeping herself moving and as she progressed through the obstacles, she started to hear how she was doing from volunteers, “About four miles in, one of the volunteers told me that I was only the second woman to comealysssa through the obstacle, and I kind of laughed him off thinking he was mistaken.  Then the volunteers at the next obstacle told me the same, and it definitely gave me the motivation I needed to really push myself through the last mile.”

It wasn’t an easy second place finish.  Tokorcheck battled with the third place finisher all the way to the end, “The girl who finished 3rd and I were taking turns passing one another since the barbed wire crawl, and it ended up coming down to the spear throw.”

alyssa1Her training has helped her be successful in a variety of events. “I train for literally everything…strength, speed, and endurance.  I’m not exceptional at anything, but I strive to be good at everything, and I think that is what makes me competitive at obstacle racing.” 

Tokorcheck changed up her routine after the grueling Vermont Beast.  She says, “After the Beast, I spent a lot of time working on getting stronger with my new best friend, the barbell.  Running was always my passion, but lately I’ve found a great satisfaction in picking up really heavy things, so now I try to split my week between CrossFit and running.”  

Tokorcheck’s trainers at Hybrid Athlete have developed a training program designed specifically for obstacle racing for their athletes, Alyssa among them, and they are not surprised that she did so well.   Anthony Vennare co-owner of Hybrid Athlete says, “Alyssa is one of the strongest competitors we have ever met, she will out lift the men we work with and then go dominate a marathon that weekend, she is a true Hybrid Athlete.”

This finish was a special one for Tokorcheck, saying, “I’ve crossed a lot of finish lines, some after running distances up to six times as long as I did on Saturday, but none of them have ever given me such a sense of pride.  It was a great feeling to see all of my training and hard work really come together like that.”

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4 Responses

  1. avatar

    Nice Story. We will see Alyssa cross the finish line in the top 3 all summer just watch.

    • avatar

      , receive the bar in the rack pooitisn, or across the very top of the chest/across the shoulders. Elbows point straight out in front of the body (if you have the flexibility in your shoulders and wrists; something to work towards MobWOD!); arms are parallel to the floor and bent backwards at the elbows; finger tips just under the bar and pressed to the shoulders; try not to death-grip the bar once it racks, or in other words: soften your grip/open your hands as you’re racking or in rack pooitisn.One thing you might consider for rack pooitisn: PRACTICE receiving a moderately heavy bar that you can move easily with a power clean to rack pooitisn. Practice letting the bar crash (so to speak) across the fronts of your shoulders; try not to slow it too much; this is something you have to become comfortable with in order to advance your weight. The fear of letting a heavy-ass bar hit you in the rack pooitisn stops a lot of people short of their cabilities.I hope you didn’t fall asleep while reading this Keep pursuing perfection! GET SOME!

  2. avatar

    Congratulations Alyssa! You are a beautiful, strong, fit woman. My hope is that your example becomes the new standard for women everywhere. Strong is the new skinny! Keep on rocking Alaska! I Havent raced a Spartan yet but you are helping to motivate me to give it a whirl. Thank you.

    • avatar

      Hey Mike!The biggest thing that stood out to me was your body lungaage moving from 102.5 to your 1st & 2nd fails at 125. Your body showed hesitation and a lack of commitment/lack of belief that you could rack some heavy f@%$ing weight! LOL. When you went back to 102.5 you didn’t hesitate, you just did it.On your first fail at 125, it was clear that the pull was powerful enough; the bar traveled high enough to be racked, but you pulled just a millisecond too long instead of turning over and receiving the bar. You also dipped to get under it after the bar had stopped traveling upward Again, hesitation.On your second attempt at 125, your starting position is excellent, but you initiate your pull before the drip/drive of your hips. So once your hip power met the movement prematurely initiated with the pull of your arms/shoulders, the bar went out of control The rest of your attempts looked great!Go back and watch your video and be really honest with yourself Do you see or remember the hesitation that you felt when you made that big jump to 125? Then watch the 125 clean that you received. Be mindful of that feeling of accomplishment and the confidence that you now have to move a heavy-ass bar through a clean range of motion!Keep at it, brother!

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