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?