One of my favorite things to do is participate in various races as part of a team. I’m not talking just 5k’s, (although with a group these can be fun too). I’m referring to races that are really different, challenging and new to everyone in the group. It’s especially fun when all the participants are a little anxious and scared going in, but everyone overcomes their fear together. Winning isn’t the goal. It’s comradery, recreation and just plain fun!
My first race of this kind was in 2008. It was the Orange County Adventure Race and our team name was “Pigs Might Fly”. They might have that day! The race was a combination of running, rowing a full mile in a little rubber boat we had to blow up as part of the race, and biking, all the while searching for and deciphering clues of where to go next. By the time we crossed the finish line, half of the other teams had already gone home! But that wasn’t the point. We finished and it was fun! All of us overcame one fear or another. Would any of us have done this alone? Never!
In 2010 I signed up for the Irvine Lake Mud Run with my daughter and my friend from the gym. We weren’t an official team but ran together as individuals. This kind of race was new to all of us. In fact, I can honestly say we all tried to stay as clean as possible. I wasn’t sure I wanted mud in my ears or my nose. I remember getting ‘Booed’ by some spectators because I lifted a rope so I didn’t have to submerge any part of my face. Whoops! People are so serious! Oh well, it was a great first mud run and it wet my whistle for more!
In 2012 I did the Irvine Lake Mud Run a second time. Our team was, “Mud Up Wit Dat?’ and consisted of myself, my son, my daughter and her fiancee. I was happy to be part of an official team and to celebrate I had t-shirts made up sporting our name. My daughter and I were “seasoned” mud runners (Haha!) but this was the first mud run for the guys on our team. Let’s just say they really brought it and made us girls step up our game a little. It brought a whole new element. Everyone got totally muddy! It was super challenging but a ton of fun. Comradery with a little competition is an excellent combination!
This brings me to 2013! We kept our team “Mud Up Wit Dat?” but added a new member, my husband. He works out consistently but he’s not the type to jump into a race like this. The fact that he did and had a great time proves the point I’m trying to make. Great memories like this are made by going for it; by joining forces, supporting one another and throwing all fear and anxiety out the window.
I am always a little nervous before every race like this because of the unknown, but I never let it stop me. I think it’s thrilling!
This was the most challenging mud run yet but we all had a blast doing it. Enjoying the journey, that’s what it’s all about!