May 25, 2013

Post Race Synopsis!

Ok, I am ready to talk about this race! 
So, when we drove up to the event we saw this HUGE wall and even bigger slide. It was quite the entrance! The ramp wall itself  was 20 feet tall with little ropes hanging down and then the slide on the other side, which looked like a ramp, what 30 feet tall! When it was our turn to start the race we were talking to some ladies who had done the Tough Mudder. That is like the king of all obstacle races....or at least that's what the regulars say. These ladies were telling us that they heard that the Savage race was tougher than the Tough Mudder!? Wait, what?! We are about to do this and you are telling me that this is tougher than the king of all obstacle races? This is my very first experience with obstacle races and you are telling me this....right now, 2 minutes before we start! So, then we quit talking to those ladies....thank goodness....and we turned to the announcer guy who was making some last minute remarks before the insanity (which I was NOT prepared for) began. One of the little tid bits of information that he just breezed right over like it wasn't a big deal was the fact that we were going to be running 7.5 miles and completing 30 obstacles! That may not mean anything to you yet, but when I signed up for the race I KNOW that I read that the course was between 5-6 miles with 20 obstacles! They just decided to add 2.5 more miles and 10 more obstacles?! Not only that but at that point I had not run more than 2.5 miles because of an injured hip flexer. I knew that I was in some major trouble at that point. Part of me....a big part of me just wanted to be like, "I was mislead on the website as to what the whole thing was all about and I'd like to just go ahead and get a refund and then pay the $10 to be a spectator and watch my friends get tortured for 2 hours." But, you know me....I just giggled nervously and tried to convince myself that it really couldn't be that bad. After all, Whit (we ran this with Whit and her friend Jeff....she is the one that told me that I'd love this race and become addicted to obstacle races. More on that later!) said that we'd probably be done in 1 hour 15 minutes. I could handle that, right?! BANG.....and we're off. We just jogged along for a while and then we hit our first obstacle....Shriveled Richard-an ice bath! It was a big dumpster filled with water. So, we had to climb up a little makeshift ladder that somebody probably put together that morning with a few sticks and twine (no just kidding-they did at least use HomeDepot like wood, a hammer, and nails) then then jump into cold water, swim to the middle of the dumpster. Oh wait, don't worry....the dumpster was lined with white plastic so I'm sure it was clean, right?! At the middle of the dumpster there was another piece of home depot like wood that was blocking the way. We had to actually swim under water to get to the other side. If I had fully known what the other side was going to feel like I would have just hung out where I was for a long while. But, at that point I was still in my "yeah, you can do anything for 1 hour and 15 minutes mode" so....LET'S DO THIS! Oh my gosh. On the other side was an ice bath. I have never been neck high in such cold water EVER. the coldness and ice cubes made it really hard to swim....I thought that I was going down. I mean, how embarrassing. "So, how did your Savage race go today?!" "Ummm....well, I couldn't even complete the first obstacle because it was just too cold." LET'S DO THIS! Oh, time out...below is a nice capture from one of the Savage Race photographers of my coming up on the ice bath side after swimming under the home depot wood. Not the best picture, but I think that photographer is a true artist. He definitely caught the moment! I think that this point when the picture was snapped I was seriously debating going back to the other side where the "warmer" water was! 
Ok, that obstacle was done now it was on to the others. Before we could get to more obstacles we had to run trails that were pretty much mountains. These were special mountains thought that seemed to only go up and up and up. I don't really recall coming down these hill, just up. And the hip flexer was loving that! 
I just really wish that I could help you understand what this was like. I feel like even the pictures and the videos about the Savage race aren't able to really capture if since you're just a spectator at that point. If I would have knows. Through all the obstacles I was just thinking, Ok, only 1 hour and 15 can do this for that long. Just think about being done and think about the medal that you'll get! I think that the log carrying obstacle was about half way. Yep, just pick up a Home Depot like log (the guys were getting 2 of course) and just walk/run with is for a long while. At this point I feel like the student in me was coming out-haven't seen her in....probably in forever! What's the point of carrying this log up and down these hills for so long? How is that going to help me in my life? What's the point of any of these things now that I think of it?! Then I was reminded that I PAID $85 to do this thing......$85!!! It was at that point that I recalled a conversation that I had with Whit just the night before. She was telling me how "fun" it was going to be and I said, "I can't wait! Are you going to be all serious or are you going to LAUGH a lot?!" She told me that she was going to have fun and laugh. Have fun and laugh?! Ok, back to the log carrying. I shouted up with Whit, "Where are the moments that we're supposed to be laughing and having a good time making memories?! Because I am still waiting for those!" I may have chuckled just a little when I said it, but that was all the laughing that I would be doing for a while. I had switched from the LET'S DO THIS mode to pure survival. Just finish and don't die! 
Another obstacle was the Nut Smasher (sorry about the names of these things....the people are Savages though so what do you expect?). It was a very long balance beam....well, it was actually guessed it....home depot like piece of wood that we walked across. It was so skinny that the sides of you feet hung over the edges on either side! Anyway, it was over a pool of water. Let me just tell you about this water. It was nasty! It was smelly and nasty. I determined that there was NO WAY that I was falling in that nasty stuff. So, I think that it took me at least 5 minutes to walk across this 20 foot balance beam. It was windy and when you got to the middle of the wiggled like crazy! Yes, I had quite a few scares when I thought, "this is it.....I'm going in to stinky water!" but I saved it. Probably wasn't the most graceful thing to watch but I was dry at the end. For the record, it took Whit just as long. We were side by side going through it together. She was calm and cool and quiet until the guy on the other side of her fell off his beam and barely touched her beam (jury is still out on whether he actually touched her beam or not). She was very quick to yell "DON'T TOUCH MY BOARD!! DON'T TOUCH MY BOARD!!!" It was hysterical. 
Let me jump forward to the mother of all obstacles. The Electric Shock, yes, that is what I said! So, it was a bunch of yellow wires hanging down from a wooden frame. The idea is that you take a running start and just dive on the ground and try not to get hit by these live wires. Problem is that every gets hit! Whit and I just stood there and watched for about 10 minutes. We watched and watched as savage after savage dove in and got zapped. I really mean that too, you could hear a zap sound each time they received a shock. After they received the shock their body went limp.....LIMP! Some of them would even look back with a confused look on their face once they recovered and got to their feet. It just didn't make sense to me until I experienced it myself. Since Whit and I stood there for so long I was able to notice a man standing to my left that seemed like he was "in charge" of this one. So, I asked him, "What does it feel like? Is it bad?" His response was, "Well, it's a shock". He obviously doesn't know me. I NEED details. So, I followed up with, "Ok, but what does it feel like?" He said, "It feel like you put your hand on an electric wire." Seriously?! I have never done that so that doesn't help at all!! Thanks buddy. So, Whit went. She got zapped, but it seemed like she was ok once Jeremy pulled her out. She quickly got up and said, "Oh, Trista it's not bad at all." Ok, it's a GO! I believe her. It's as if all of the other savage racer's experiences were wiped out of my memory since Whit said it was not bad. Really I should have been thinking...."That's crazy that she said it's not that bad because by ALL other indications it seems like it was REALLY BAD!" But instead I put a smile on my face, got a running start, and dove.....ZAP! What the?!?! I think that one of two things happened when I got shocked the first time. One-I died or Two-my brain froze and turned black. When I came to I heard another ZAP and thought that someone had just run right into me with all of their might. I think that someone may have even been The Incredible Hulk. The force with which this mystery person hit me was intense. Next thing I knew Jeremy was pulling me out before I got it again. When I got to my feet I immediately looked back to see what I thought would be an enormous man with bunging biceps that was about to apologize to me for pretty much knocking my head off. Wait, what?! Insert double take....maybe even a triple take. Wait, what?! There wasn't anybody behind me? Ahhhh, I see....I understand the confused look on the savages faces. That was shock number two....not a person at all! Needless to say, I gracefully walked around the second human bug zapper. 
I honestly can't remember what time we finished, but I think that it was 2 hours a 45 minutes!!
*Now that this race is about 3 weeks or so behind me I can say that it wasn't THAT bad....of course I am exaggerating some. I am glad that I was able to experience it....once. 
On another note, Whit, Jeremy, and Jeff were amazing! I was just so surprised at their drive and determination. I also realized that when it comes to that kind of thing I don't have that drive and all.  
Good new from this whole experience....Jeremy has found a new passion. 
Another bit of good news....he will have someone that can take video and photos of him as he travels along the obstacle course because I will be a spectator!!! 

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