In an attempt to not talk about Wagons three times in a row (wait till my next post), I figured I would throw a post up about my Warrior Dash 2011 experience.
I really do not really feel it necessary to tell you all what Warrior Dash is other than it is fun, it is muddy, and it kicked my ass.
Months ago I decided I would make an attempt at the Warrior Dash. Why you ask?
Why wouldn’t you want to is the question?
Accompanied by my friend who I coaxed into trying the event with me, we made our way to the grounds about an hour south of Akron a tad late of our start time. We were supposed to be there for a 9am start time, but due to traffic we ran about 1/2 hour late. No biggie.
We checked in and headed immediately to the starting line where it looked like 1000 people were lined up to attempt the Dash. Before I knew it, I was running down a hill with people of ages in what would be a trial on my body for the next hour and a half or so.
The course was about 3.10 miles that circled up, around and through a 300-acre motocross park called Area 330 located in Carrollton, OH. There were 11 obstacles placed throughout the course that mostly consisted of muddy hills during the first half. Seriously, the muddy hills were worse than the obstacles themselves. Every corner I turned on the course there were more hills of mud it seemed. People were falling all over the place, but I maintained my balance and the only time I really fell was when I tried sliding down a muddy hill. I made it about 3-feet.
As I previously mentioned, the obstacles were not that hard, some were a challenge like the dumpsters thanks to the tires placed all about. I almost wiped out when I jumped out of the final dumpster and landed between two retired Goodyear tires.
I managed to make my way over rope nets, climb over walls, balance on beams, and even crawl under barb wire. Luckily I have no fear of heights (sadly one girl did who I had to help coax push her leg over the net wall, she apologized profusely) and was able climb up high as well as managed to climb over walls and even trudge through mud covered logs in water dirtier than Lake Erie.
I’m no athlete. I have yet to still get the hang of this jogging thing. It was no surprise to me when my body started shutting down on some not nearly as muddy hills came back into into the course. I took a breather a couple of times but for the most part pushed myself to the max.
When we rounded the end, you could smell the kerosene that fueled one of the last obstacles…the Warrior Roast. It sounds worse than it really was, but I leaped over two fires that definitely were real. Muddy Mayhem, a mud pit with barbwire strewn across was the last challenge before the finish line. I hopped in the mud without hesitation and dragged myself through and finally conquered the Warrior Dash. Covered head to toe in mud, I was given a medal proving that I survived. A tear my have shed from my eye.
There were people cheering on the sidelines for all who crossed and it was a nice feeling. I can’t say I finished first or 40th, over even 700th. Folks, I finished 10523rd place and I am damn proud of myself. I beat 400 people in that dash. No, I kicked their asses… Not really.
It was not about winning or losing though. It was about getting with your friends and having the time of your life. In fact, I met up with a few friends after I cleaned up in the dirty lake. I even got to see someone who I have not seen since high school as well as a fellow bearded KSU grad who I took a class with last Fall.
We all shared beers and told stories of our day while bands played music in the background. There were thousands of mud covered warriors and their friends and family who came to cheer them on surrounding the muddy grounds. It was an amazing experience and I am already planning on next year’s. This time though I plan on learning how to maybe jog or at least train a little harder. Now that I know what I am going to be up against, I might as well turn it into a personal challenge for myself.
I encourage everyone to try the Warrior Dash at least once in their life. You haven’t lived until you have made it though a dash.