Monday, May 20, 2013

Tough Mudder - Jacksonville 2013

It was tough. It was muddy. But we were ready for the challenge. Dave completed every obstacle. The only one I didn't do was the Funky Monkey.

Yeah. I can maybe do 1/4 of me, I've tried.

But thanks to my awesome teammates and my own stubborness, I made it over/under/through all the rest.
Not neccessarily all that gracefully, but I did it.

Seriously you guys, that mud was slippery.

Naturally, the obstacles I thought would be difficult were a piece of cake and the ones that I wasn't so much concerned with kicked my ass. For example, I thought this one was going to be pretty mentally taxing:

But as it turns out, it was quite relaxing. I float like a cork, so I just slowly pulled my way through. No joking, I wished that one was longer because it was nice to just pull myself along, chill as f***k in the cool water. 

I really hadn't given the Arctic Enema (ice cold, literally) and the Electric Shock obstacles much thought because they were just about pain. I've pushed another living thing out of my vagina, I've had major surgery...I'm a Crossfitter, damn it! I have learned to make friends with pain. It does not scare me. And it didn't. But I'm not going to lie to you. The electric shocks hurt like a sonuvabitch. You had to run through the last one, (you crawled through the first) and the shocks dropped both Dave and I to our knees. The Arctic Enema, once you were out for a minute or two, actually felt great. My muscles really enjoyed it. But for the moments that I was in it, my body was so shocked I started involuntarily breathing REALLY quickly as I was working my way out. But through all three of the painful obstacles, I did not lose my shit as I saw some folks do....just pushed through the pain and did what I needed to do to get myself out of there as soon as quickly as possible. 

Kinda felt like this in my head:

Our teammates all had varying levels of fitness, so we took lots of walking breaks. So between that and the waits at the obstacles it took us about 4 hours and 10 minutes to finish. Which was fine, as with our crew  I was thinking 4 hours would be our best case scenario. By the time we were done, I felt...well, fine. A little beat up and bruised from the obstacles, but in terms of muscles/cardio I could have done another 12 miles if required. My legs felt perfectly strong. I've felt worse after ten mile forest hikes in the past.

Why did I feel great? Finished super-strong and no muscle soreness, even today when so many I know who have done it are in pain afterwards? 

Yeah, you knew what the answer to that question was going to be didn't you?

I never did any long runs to prep for the Tough Mudder, just kept up my regular Crossfit schedule. And BAM! Killed it. Just like with the Adv Races. Quit doing the chronic-cardio type workouts, just stuck with the Crossfit and BAM! Times improved. Of course, if I was looking to put in faster times, and/or marathon type distances I would assume supplementary workouts would be in order. However, I continue to be amazed with the actual real-world-getting-shit-done results Crossfit provides me. So much result, with so little (time) investment, IMO. Not saying it'll work that way for everyone, just saying that it works for me.

Also, I learned a new trick at this race which I think contributed greatly to my recovery. One of our teammates is an ultra-runner and he suggested I add a pack of salt to my first of three cups of water I would drink at every stop. Which I did, two or three times throughout the race. I'll definitely be incorporating that into my Adv Races, especially when we try our first long one coming up in September.

After the race we decided to make the most of having the kid at grandma's all weekend and stayed the night in Orlando. To further prove (brag, whatever) how quick our recovery was, we went out dancing until 2:00am after the race. Not to say, Mr. Fuchs is without soreness, he definitely is feeling it a bit. But to be fair, he got a much harder workout than I did. Not only was he the only person on our team to complete those long-ass monkey bars, he (along with the ultra-runner) had to boost me and another female teammate over all the huge walls and stuff. They even hung out at the the top of Mt Everest for awhile after we got up there so that they could help some other folks get up. Very cool.

Which reminds me of something else I learned at TM. You know how in action movies you see someone danlging from a cliff or a bridge or something and they are holding on by fingertips and still manage to only sloooooowly slip away, or maybe not. Maybe the hero pulls them up by just a hand's grasp? Uh, no. The burns on my knees are proof that if you don't grab wrists, it ain't happening my friends. Just grab hands and you'll immediately lose your grip, if you're talking full grown human beings anyways.

My cellphone is still MIA so I can't take a pic of my skinned knees for you, nor can I find a gif that illustrates my point so here's one of stars orbiting around a supermassive black hole at the center of our galaxy.

Because, Muse.

So what's next for this dirty, dirty girl? Beat the Gauntlet, a 6 mile mud-run with ropes course is on June 8th. Even thought it kind of alters our vacation plans a bit, it's a must do. It's local (as in 2-minutes-away-local) and we'll be able to finally get our hands on that ROTC ropes course. 

If you're in FL, check it out! 

The weekend after that is the Father's Day/SCAR Adventure Race, put on by Pangea. Holden did this race with us last year. He enjoyed it. And by enjoy I mean he liked spending time with us doing something we enjoy, but we totally had to bribe him with a new Lego set to keep him motivated and not whining when he got tired. When it was all said and done he committed to doing this race with us each year, but that's it. Which we found fair. And actually prefer since at the Adv Races (as opposed to the Mud-Runs) we are pretty competitive and are trying to go as fast as possible/place well. I have to admit I can't wait until he is old enough to do the Mud-Runs. I know he is going to love them, and a low pressure environment is much more conducive to family togetherness. 

That's it for now dear readers, I've got some snatches to prepare for this evening.

That doesn't mean what you think it does....or maybe it does. I'm not asking questions.

1 comment:

  1. Dear Riding Librarian,

    I've just read your blog - its fantastic! My co-authors and I are writing a paper on Tough Mudder for a marketing Journal and we would like to ask your permission to use a quote from your blog in our paper: "I'm a Crossfitter, damn it! I have learned to make friends with pain. It does not scare me. And it didn't. But I'm not going to lie to you. The electric shocks hurt like a sonuvabitch. You had to run through the last one, (you crawled through the first) and the shocks dropped both Dave and I to our knees ."

    If you wouldn't mind emailing me back to let me know if this is OK: that would be wonderful, keep up the great work!

    Best wishes