Spartan Update

If you remember, a few weeks ago I put out a plea for advice in my Spartan: Am I Tough Enough post asking if I should register for a Spartan Race.  The race is just two short weeks after completing my first full marathon and I was worried about my body being recovered enough to handle the intensity that Spartan races are known for.  I want to thank everyone who weighed in; I received a great deal of advice through my blog, on facebook and also e-mail.  Y’all are awesome!

So an update on my decision….Turns out, I’m NOT tough enough for Spartan.  Next year Spartan, you’re mine but right now, these Olive Oyl strength arms are simply not ready for the beating a Spartan race will take on them.  Maybe Popeye can spot me a few cans of his magical spinach??

I wonder if this is how I look when I run??

What really helped me make my decision was reading a Spartan Race recap from Melissa who blogs at Melissa Runs.  I was fine with all of the obstacles, crawling under barbed wire, jumping over fire, climbing over walls, etc… but what stopped me dead in my tracks was reading that you have to do 30 burpees any time you fail to complete an obstacle.  (To read Melissa’s totally BA recap, click here.)  Now for most people, doing all those burpees might not dissuade them, but for me, I felt like I ran right into a brick wall.  You want me to do what?? How many times?? On legs that may or may not have recovered from running 26.2 miles?? Pfft!  That’s pretty much begging my body to rebel and get injured.  Yes, Mr. Race Director, I would like a side of torn IT band with this wall I have to climb; thanks for asking.

So for those of you who may not know what a burpee is, it’s not a cucumber.  It’s an explosive total body exercise that combines squats, pushups, and jumping in one fluid motion.  I can only do about 10 of these right now…not 30!

Am I disappointed that I didn’t sign up? Yes.  Am I content with my decision? Yes.  Now here’s the kicker…Can I promise not to sign up in the next few weeks? Unsure.  I’m kind of a compulsive race registrant.  Case in point, I just registered for the Gulf Coast Half Marathon Series in Mandeville, Louisiana which is only 2 weeks before the Marine Corps Marathon.  I’m hoping I don’t regret the decision to run a half 2 weeks before my first full but registering for it sure made not registering for the Spartan Race much easier!  Wish me luck and thanks again for all the wonderful advice – y’all rock!

Question:  Have you ever had race registration conflicts?  How did you resolve it?


15 thoughts on “Spartan Update

  1. I think you made the right choice girl! The rule of thumb is that your body needs a day off after every mile ran in a race….so for 26.2 miles you need 26 days off. Now do I follow this rule? Nope! But I DO take some time off (the most I’ve ever taken is two weeks) and most importantly I listen to my body. I’m running the Gulf Coast Half in Mandeville!!!! I ran it last year too…great race! Let’s try to meet up!!! And I think you will be fine….my first marathon was in march and the weekend before I was in Disney running the Princess Half! 🙂

    • Thanks, Mindy! You had me laughing with the “now do I follow this rule?” comment! Rules are made for breaking, right? Yes, yes, yes! We need to meet up – if even just for a minute before the race! 🙂 I’ve heard nothing but good things about the Mandeville 1/2 so I’m excited about it. I ran their 1/2 in Pennsacola and it wasn’t so great…

  2. WHOAHHH my. those spartan races really seem crazy!! i’m glad that you are being realistic and thinking about whether or not it’s the best decision for you! my conflict with signing up for a race just comes from me actually signing up to do my frist one!! i LOVE running and run almost everyday, but for some reason, races just scare me! it’s kinda silly, but im struggling with it! have a happy wkend!

    • Jenna, it’s not silly to be a bit scared of signing up for your first race. It’s a really huge step to take! I remember I was so nervous with mine, I just kept thinking “I’m going to make a fool of myself”. BUT if I hadn’t taken that first step, I would have never realized how much I love racing! It’s really fun gathering with hundreds/thousands/tens of thousands of people who have the same interest as you. So grab a friend, pick a race and then dive right into the challenge. You can do it!!

  3. I think the Gulf Coast half is a much better choice 🙂 Two weeks out is a great time for a half (not sure about your training plan, but mine has 12 miles at that point) so you can treat it as a training run & it will be perfect! Spartan Race isn’t going anywhere, so I definitely think you should do one in the future!! You made the right decision, and your body will thank you later 😉

    • Thanks so much for helping make the decision easier for me! I actually have a 13 mile run planned for that weekend so it really wasn’t a stretch to run it. My only problem is going to be keeping myself from “racing” it instead of just running it. I totally get caught up in the race environment. I definitely have my eye on Spartan for next year!

  4. Yes I’m always in conflict! Usually race vs injury. Goo call on the Spartan – it will still be there, promise! I’m interested to see what impact that half has before the full. Are you planning to race it race it, or just take it as a long run?

    • I hate being in conflict – why can’t our bodies just do exactly what we want them to?? The plan is to run the 1/2 like a long run but realistically, I know I’ll get caught up in the excitement of the race atmosphere and end up racing it. I’m not a competitive person I just get super amped off of everbody else’s energy.

  5. Burpees are simply terrifying! I can’t imagine doing 30 EVERYTIME I can’t complete an obstacle.
    However, I’m not surprised they would throw something like that in there. Spartan’s are tough y’know?

    • Bummer about your obstacle course race, Abby. It seems like all the races happen back-to-back in the fall and spring which doesn’ leave much room for trying new things. You’re right….next year we dominate!!

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