So I did not fall of the face of the earth....
We were flooded off it instead! I will make a long story as short as possible and then I will finally get how AWESOME the race was.
Wednesday September 7th it was as usual for northeast PA raining and awful but my dad signed me up for the spartan sprint on September10th (ha instead of waiting almost a year). That night the street next to ours was given a suggested evacuation, it happens a lot because the river is on the other side of the street. My husband ran down to the officer and asked if we would need to leave too and they said "No way, water has never reach your house". We are 10ft above flood level so everyone figured the worst case scenario would be a few inches in the basement. Thursday morning we woke up to the water 20ft from our house and we were told that it would not only reach the basement but the first floor and had to evacuate. My husband and I threw what we could on our second floor and grabbed what we could and drove away as they cut off our power. The national guard was ushering people out and it was a mess.
I couldn't think about the house. I just kept telling myself it would just get the basement, they were just being cautious. The river was supposed to crest at the highest it had since hurricane Agnus in 1972, but even then our house had only got a very soggy yard. As we drove out of the disaster, out of the rain towards Tuscarora state park all I could think about was the Spartan sprint.
The Spartan race saved me. It literally saved my sanity. We found out the water had wiped away our first floor and the majority of our personal possessions. I focused 100% on the race I thought I was slightly unprepared for. We stayed in Tuscarora state park, about a half an hour from Blue ridge ski resort. The park was beautiful, I love the yurts and I forgot my worries for a night.
Saturday I woke up and felt sick. I have run many road races and a few trail but never anything with flames and mud. I got dressed, drank 64oz of water and ate 2 packs of almonds and a banana and we got in the car. I was nervous the whole ride and seeing the people and the parking lot and the smoke as we pulled up made me wonder what the hell I had got myself into.
I got my chip and all that and paced nervously as I waited for my 12:30 heat to start. Thankfully some of the wonderful women I met on FB in the Spartan chicked group were there and found me and helped calm my nerves, ha until I walked past a few sprained ankles and people being stitched.
Finally the 12:30 heat got ready to go and I stood in the crowd at the starting line like I had so many times before...... around me everyone was so supportive, people joked about only doing it for the free beer at the end and this put me at ease. Suddenly smoke canisters and the 12:30 heat were off. Running through smoke instantly made my "do it or else" mentality kick in and that was that, I had started I WOULD finish.
Here is the race to the best of my recollection, its hard because I am writing this 3 weeks later and the adrenaline was amazing, wanna talk about "runner's high"????
Started with the smoke, up a steep incline (we were running UP a ski slope) and to a small tail into the woods on the right. Everything was VERY slippery as there had been all the other people before us. We got to the first few walls, thank you to all the gracious spartan men who popped me over with a leg up, it was several walls in a row and the kind you go through. Those were very easy for me because I am smaller. Ok so I had done some walls, those had been a huge fear of mine. After that we just continued up an extremely steep incline through the woods, narrow trails, down MUDDY hills on my butt.... the next obstacles are most likely in the wrong order because my memory is a little fuzzy. We did a cargo net, I remember running out of the woods and seeing the dumb thing and having a mini heart attack. Heights.... HUGE fear. Looking back this is so stupid to me, here my home is gone and I am freaking out over a cargo net. Well I didn't stop I just put one foot in front of another and did it. With every obstacle I did I felt more sure of myself. There was a a water slide and a lake to cross (anyone 5'5" and under was swimming.... me), there was a horizontal wall to get across, log stumps to hop across, a cinder block to drag down a hill, through some water and up a hill, mud by the dump truck load, a cinder block type thing on a rope that you had to pull up on a pulley and let down slowly, fill a bucket with rocks, walk down the hill around and back up,and my number one favorite mud and barbed wire with a wall breaking it up. I have never felt more alive than crawling what I am guessing to be about 100 yards (I asked around how long it was and that's what I got) under barbed wire in mud in my face. Bye Bye bib number. The last bit was the spear throw (something I will HAVE to work on), I did burpees because my spear wasn't even close to hitting the straw, the hop over the fire (LOVED that) and the final wall, up and over easy peasy, I was surprised to later find out that this was an obstacle many people where getting hurt on. (yes that is my butt coming over the top)
I crossed the finish line in 2 hours and 21 minutes after running 4.8 miles up a ski slope and tackling all those obstacles. I got a sweet medal, a t-shirt and my beer. I am now changed forever. Every time I think I cant handle something I think of the cargo net or the walls. This couldn't have come at a better time because I have handled this flood in a far better manner than I would have if I had not done the race when I did.
Now I look forward to finding a new home and my next race.
*~*~ Embrace the suck ~*~* Spartan chicked ~ we make mud look good <3 http://theroadtothermopylae.com