I have so much I want to say! But isn’t that always the case?
I keep saying I plan to post more regularly and then half a month goes between posts…and here we are again. Blarg.
But, I’m starting a new job (well, old..new..job… it’s complicated) in a week and I’ll have a freer schedule which hopefully means more blogging and more stuff that inspires blogging, like working out and cooking.
Anyway, you’re all here today for the run recap, so let’s get to it.
This weekend I was a blog ambassador (fancy, right?!) in the Dirty Girl Mud Run! The folks over at Dirty Girl contacted me a few months ago to see if I would be interested in doing the run and writing about my experience – of course I said yes – but I was still nervous. I like running well and good enough, but obstacles……climbing on ladders, nets, walls….super scary to me.
What won me over was the philosophy of the Dirty Girl Run:
I am not in the best of shape, can I still participate?
Absolutely. Dirty Girl Obstacle Run is non-competitive and will not be timed, so there is no need to hustle to get through the course. We do recommend some light cardio a couple times per week paired with some upper body strengthening to help you get up and over the obstacles. However, you’ll have the option to bypass any obstacle you’re not comfortable tackling.
Sign me up!
I roped two girls onto the run with me (one agreed to do it the night before after a few drinks and seriously KICKED butt at the run!) and we had a blast!
We left about 8:30 a.m. to make it to Trenton a few hours later for our 11:30 a.m. start time. We showed up late and without wavers but Dirty Girl was prepared and we were able to fill out electronic wavers. It also wasn’t a big deal at all that we were late to our start time.
We got our bibs, swag t-shirts, and free beer tickets and headed over to the bag check.
The race was held at a paint ball course and it made for a fun 3.1 miles. Before going out onto the course a Dirty Girl dancer pumped us up with music and dancing. I was surprised how few people were in each wave, but I think it made for a better experience overall because some of the obstacles were shaky and I think I would have been more nervous if there were a bunch of people all doing it at once.
Within a half mile of the run we came upon our first obstacle and all scampered up a big inflatable bouncy wall and bumped our way down on our butts. Next we dived right into a mud pit to crawl under ropes.
The obstacle I was most nervous about – the wall climb – came early in the course and I was able to get up and over the 8-foot wall with only a little bit of protesting and whining. Thanks friends!
The course wound through fields and woods and we alternated running and walking the whole way. Turns out, running with sneakers (and undies..gross…) full of mud isn’t all that hard or uncomfortable.
We passed big teams along the way dressed up with tutus and hair bows – I would definitely put more thought into my outfit if I were to do it again.
We climbed up rope ladders, hopped through tires, went through tunnels of
love mud, climbed down and out of a few different mud pits all leading up to a giant slide that landed you butt-first in a pool of mud.
Overall I thought the race was really well organized and the course route was never boring. There were mini bridges and little mazes that broke up the stretches without obstacles. There were water stops at mile 1 and 2 but honestly we could have used more because it was so hot out.
Now… for the cons.
We finished the race running through a final mud pit and I immediately went in search of water only to find that there was nothing but warm Sparkling Fruit2O.
HUGE fail. I don’t drink anything carbonated to begin with (unless of course its tonic… with gin…) and this was sticky sweet and warm and the complete opposite of what you want when you finish a race.
There were places that you could buy water, but at that point we were still covered in mud and would have to wash off before getting in our bags to dig out some money. What were they thinking?! Ugh.
With dry mouths, we got our stuff from the bag check and then waited about 45 minutes on the line to hose off. No one seemed to care much about modesty at that point so I stripped off my muddy clothes for shorts and a new t-shirt after a quick rinse in some freezing cold water.
After getting as clean as possible, we went in search of food. There were a few food vendors but honestly I was unimpressed. Usually after races there’s some healthy stuff – bananas, granola bars, yogurt, bagels – this was stuff you would find at a carnival like zeppolis and corn dogs and the food was super expensive! I ended up getting some sausage and peppers and splitting a huge plate of fresh potato chips (those were wellll worth the money..mmmm…) and relaxing a bit with our free beers before heading back to North Jersey.
All in all I would say the race was a huge success. I conquered some fears (looking at you 8-foot wall) and had a great time with my friends in the course. The dirty girl staff was friendly and and the other runners looked like they were having a great time, but the lack of post-race amenities was disappointing. Dirty Girl seemed to really think through all the details, I’m surprised that they would provide warm, sweet Fruit20 and no water after 3.1 miles of sun and mud.
WOULD I DO ANOTHER MUD RUN? Eh. I enjoy being pushed past some of my physical fears, but I get more out of it in a setting like CrossFit where I know I’m being supported. Also, the price tag is quite hefty for these events. I was provided a free entry and my team members received 50 percent off their entry, so it would have to be something special to make me shell out the whole ticket price.