Thursday, May 21, 2015

Ready to find out?

When I hear the word "spartan," I immediately think of my school district's mascot. I think about wearing blue and gold on the sidelines of football games and the less than flattering uniforms from indoor and outdoor track seasons. What does not often come to mind is the immensely popular Spartan Race series.

I'm not going to lie, I have never done an adventure race. I've considered it before but have been mid-marathon training cycle each time and an adventure race sounded like an injury risk I couldn't take. Now that I am sidelined by injury, I look at any and all events that involve running and think "I wish." I wish I could run. I don't care where or how. In a similar vein, I think many people interested in trying running for the first time see races and hear that same "I wish" in their heads. Maybe they think they aren't strong enough or fast enough. They might finish last. They might not finish at all. Anyone else hear those voices before? They aren't unique to the new runner.

Spartan Race is the stop button on that defeatist tape. The founders of the race series wanted to create an environment that appealed to those with a sense of adventure, those who are active, and those looking to discover their inner athlete. There are options for everyone, (kids too!) including a team event. For those still on the fence of "I'm not sure I can...," Spartan has your back there as well, with the Spartan SGX training program, free workouts in cities across the country, nutritional tips, and more.

I know that I have taken on previously unthinkable race challenges (oh hey, first marathon) because that voice in my head started wondering "but what if I could." I wanted to find out. We as athletes and humans are capable of much more than we can imagine, but we only find out when we step outside our comfort zone. Sure, there could be pain and frustration, but more often than not what I find most often is MAGIC. Not just in me, but in what I see from others. There are no restrictions on who is or can be an athlete. None. The guts and grit I've seen on the race course is incredible and often comes from what many would consider to be unlikely sources. Maybe you think you're that unlikely source.

There are over 100 Spartan races across the country. Each of those is a chance to Find Out. If you need just a bit more nudging, let me throw in a discount code for race registration good through May 27th, 2015. Use: MEMORIAL. You could save up to $40! If that still isn't enough, the awesome people at Spartan Race have given me one free race entry to give away. Yup, FREE. Comment below and tell me what race made you wonder what you were capable of, or how you turned off that negative script. Winner announced next week!

So, what are you waiting for?


  1. Hmmmm- I wrote a comment on here but it didn't seem to post! Dang it!

    Here goes round two ;)

    I started running 4 years ago, and signed up for a 5k not because I had been running but because I needed a challenge to start running in the first place. I finished my 5k with a relatively respectable finish time and thought, "If I could do that with little training, what else am I capable of?" That led to signing up for a 15k that I ran two months later, and then a 1/2 marathon two months after that, and now here we are 3 full marathons and four years later!!

    The mantra that helps me shake off negative thoughts has been,"It doesn't have to be perfect, you just have to do your best." Being a Type A personality, that little mantra has been my saving grace mentally and physically. :)

    Good luck in your training!!

    Lynn Carlson
    Twitter/insta: apiemaker

  2. Seeing you run Marine Corp inspired Ferb and I to run our first marathons! Thanks!

  3. I did my first Spartan race last year. It was a sprint at AT&T park. To date it was the hardest race I have ever done. I think I ran every set of stairs in the stadium and it took me almost two hours to complete a 5k. CRAZY! After that race I thought what the heck did I get myself into - I had already signed up for the Spartan Super about 6 months later. I was so afraid I couldn't complete the 8+ mile race after the sprint experience. When the super came around it was literally pouring buckets of rain and it took us 2 hours to drive 1 mile because their parking situation was not ideal. The Super to date has been my favorite race. It ended up being almost 10 miles but I made it to the end. For me, the first three miles was great then came a lot of negative thoughts and struggle in miles 4 and 5. Mile 6 was good, but I didn't see that I had passed the 7 mile marker and was really starting to complain a lot in my head thinking I wasn't nearing the end. By mile 8 I was feeling good again but ready to finish. To this day, when I am having a hard run or race I tell myself to Spartan Up! AROO!

  4. Copy/pasted from the blog's Facebook page:

    Rose VanHuss: Wouldn't let me comment in the blog itself...soo the Pistol 50k. The negative script was turned off w/ support of great friends & telling myself hey! Its a marathon w/ a few more miles.