Warrior Dash Georgia - May 19, 2012
Friday was moving day -- I'm moving from one of my complex to the other (long story short). I'm blessed to have a great friend like Heather drive up from Atlanta and help me make this happen. So after a 75 minute $20 rental truck from Lowe's and throwing my mattress and couch off my balcony (yes, you read that right), all my big furniture got moved on Friday night. And then we carb-loaded as I thanked HP for all her help... and then we went on a cupcake quest. We finished the night at the old apartment (where there was still cable and internet), eating a cupcake a piece, and lounging on the couch cushions we left behind while watching Say Yes to the Dress: Bridesmaids and VH1's Top 100 Songs of the 90s (at which point we decided we need to add at least half of the songs to our running playlists).
|Whole-wheat chicken penne; HP and me!; cinnamon roll cupcake, strawberry margarita cupcake (Gigi's Cupcakes), nutty chocolate cupcake and vanilla twilight cupcake (Silver Lining Co.). Gig's won. Yum!|
|Parking lot... and therefore, still clean!|
Once we got to the main plaza, we met up with Heather's kickball friends, Terry, Rob, Rob, and Terry's cousin Nicole and her husband, Chris. Loved having a group to run with; definitely makes the experience a lot more entertaining! Though I didn't know any of them except Heather of course, we all clicked pretty easily and got super excited about the adventure to come! Terry had done Warrior Dash last year, so prepped us a little bit for some of the obstacles and challenges up ahead. Though we gotta say, some of the obstacles that were there last year didn't make an appearance this year!
|All of us, ready to go! Chris, Nicole, me, Terry, HP, Rob.|
|Love this lady!|
And then it was time! The fire guns apparently stopped working when our heat took off, so that was pretty disappointing, considering I'd been pretty entertained by them the entire afternoon (womp). The first quarter-mile was all road and then partially dirt/rocky trail until we got to the first obstacle: the lake! I was amazed that we went straight into water without any other obstacles first!
Lake Swim - the water felt amazing. Not too cold, but a perfect leisure swim that just happened to be a little harder with soaked running shoes.
Storming Normandy - this sucked, only because it wasn't even mud yet, but hard, coarse, gritty sand that really only served to cut up your knees. Mine are pretty sand-burned!
Under-Overs - under the barbed wire, over the 3-foot (?) walls. About ten of these in total. Easy!
The WALL - This is honestly the obstacle that worried me most. I've got little to no upper body strength, admittedly, and was worried about scaling a 15-foot wall with nothing more than some rope and bars to help hoist me up. It wasn't actually terrible! The worst was straddling the wall, trying to figure out how to get down and feeling it teeter a bit - that was nerve-wracking.
Deep Water Swim - This featured some seriously deep water (where I first jumped, maybe 8-9 feet?) and floating islands you had to hoist yourself up on and either climb over or get back in the water to hoist up again, finish the swim and climb back out.
Net Crawl - clammer up the net slope, over and back down again. Not super challenging, but definitely took some work!
At this point, we started the run up the mountain. Maybe a quarter mile later was the next obstacle:
Horizontal Net Climb - climb up nets, climb across nets, climb down nets. I hate nets! But really, not too complicated!
After this, we ran probably another mile or so. I must say, the race's mile markers seemed a little off. Maybe because I was so distracted, but I sure didn't feel like I had ran a mile between the 1.5 and 2.5 markers. But maybe I was all off. Anyway, after the second net climbing, it was a lot of trail running from there - mostly up, but eventually found our way heading downwards.
The Slide! - Definitely wouldn't call this an obstacle, but so much fun! The short hillside was covered in gray tarps and sprinklers, with hay (and consequently, mud) at the bottom. The best way was to just take this straight on, so I jumped right in!
The Junkyard- Also land of tires and junk cars. Not a fan of climbing through and over cars, and was terrified of messing up my ankles and knees in the tires. I was way up front, Nicole right behind me, and the others behind her, when I heard Nicole yell that she had cut herself. I looked back, saw a cut and then saw the whole cut; she had gashed her leg wide open in probably a 5-inch cut across her upper thigh. I started sprinting ahead, and asked the cameraman to radio for medics, and then asked the sprinter who whizzed by me to do the same. Thankfully, at this point, Terry (a nurse, to our sheer luck) had gotten Chris' shirt and used it as a tourniquet on her leg - this explains my sudden disappearance of a tank top in following photos; I wasn't sure there was anything being used yet so I worked my way out of my own tank before seeing Chris' shirt already wrapped around her leg); medics finally arrived as Terry told us she probably got through tissue and muscle (squirming ensues). After medics got her gauzed up and on the truck, she yelled at us to keep going so hesitantly, we did.
Warrior Roast - Warrior Dash's probably most recognized obstacle, three rows of fiery logs to hurdle yourself over - not going to lie, I'm really excited for those professional photos to post! Straight from the roast into the..
Mud Pit! - Of course, the namesake. The announcer for the race was walking up and down the banks for the length of the pit, calling out people for not being muddy enough. Hilarious and amazing. Deep enough to swim or crawl in and a fantastic way to end!
|In chin-deep. Some guy kicked back and splashed my entire face, too.|
And the end. Aside from the huge wall, I didn't feel like any obstacle was so challenging most folks couldn't do it. All in all, a fantastic time and something I'll totally do again!
|At the end, minus our Wounded Warrior (& her hubby).|
Chris ran off to go get his and Nicole's bag so the medic tent could get all her information and get her to the hospital in Clayton. After we finished, we ran off to meet up with them at the medic tent, gave her her (earned!) medal, where they were getting ready to drive her back to their car so Chris could take her to the ER. Poor thing!
We went to clean up, get our free beers and turkey legs (we'd been craving them since we got there three hours earlier!).
|Muddy, muddy warriors.|
|Donate your shoes afterwards - a cool touch. And the reason I saved my Color Run shoes to do WD, so I could donate them at the end.|
|Mmm... turkey. And fuzzy warrior hats.|
We hung around til about 5:30 and decided it was time to go - we still had a long drive home after all! The other obnoxious part was that by the time we got out to shuttle pick-up, there was not a bus in sight (while at the school there'd been at least 10 of them) but at least 100 people in line ahead of us. And when we got back to the school, there were still at least 4 more sitting there! There needs to be some more coordination there, WD folks, FYI!
We found out when we got home that Nicole, our beloved Wounded Warrior, got two rows of stiches under the skin and a row of stitches above to fix her up -- what a trooper! She and Chris were super fun to get to know and I'm only sad they didn't get to finish and enjoy the post party with us. Thinking of you Nicole, hope you're feeling better!
|Nothing stitches-worthy, but some good bruises and sand burns!|
Sunday Molly and I hung around for a little while. I did some more moving, despite the incredible soreness I felt all over. Mid-afternoon we took a break (and by we, I mean I. She hung around you know... and did dog things) and went to Ben Burton park for some cooler water and pretty views. Can't beat it!
Today, I am not nearly as sore, but have a few aches here and there, and a few more bruises to show. Not looking forward to finishing moving, but it must be done!
Cheers from your favorite Warrior,