Father’s Day Spartan Challenge

June 16, 2017 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: General, Sports 

I love today’s world where we can each pick races and events that we like. Some people run trails, others run roads, while some do both. Many athletes ride, or hike, or adventure race. Whatever your interest, there’s a race or event to challenge you.

But how often do you try something new?

Every so often I have the opportunity to try and entice you to try a Spartan Race.

Please read to the end of this blog post because I have an opportunity for one person to win a free entry into a Spartan Race.

Have you done a Spartan Race? These very popular races are obstacles course races of short to endurance length distances. Each race involves water and mud, and their signature obstacles that will test your physical, mental, tactical and team-based skills. Spartan Races are held throughout the country. If these races interest you for 2017, check out the Spartan website as well as the two books Spartan Up! and Spartan Fit! Do a Spartan Race and you’ll come out as more than a runner.

I know. Some of you are saying. They aren’t the same as a marathon, 50-mile, or 100-mile race. Ultrarunners are tough and our events are hard. Spartan Races are much shorter.

You are right of course. But. And it’s a huge “but”, Spartan Races have obstacles that I’d bet most ultrarunners could not complete. Carrying a 60-pound sandbag up and down a long grassy hill, the barbed wire roll, rope climbs, the log carry, carrying a five-gallon bucket filled with rocks up and down a hill, tire pull, water obstacles, and more.

You have to be in the best physical shape of your life for these events. So do your feet. Between the grassy hills, slick with water and mud, the muddy trails and roads, the uphills and downhills over rocky trails and roads, jumping onto and over walls, down cargo nets, and other challenges, your ankles and feet take a beating. You get junk in your shoes, and while no one in the shows complained of blisters, I am certain many of the racers had them. Just watching the shows I could see there would be sprained ankles along with other injuries.

If you can’t complete an obstacle, you have to do 30 burpees. And that’s after you failed at the obstacle. Your heart is racing and breathing is labored, and you are exhausted.

Check out the website and see if this type of race interests you. Their Spartan Race Father’s Day promotion with code SPARTANDAD will get you 50% off gear, $69 Sprint races, and two free digital books with any race purchase (Spartan Up! & Spartan Fit!). Here’s the link for more information: Spartan Race Father’s Day promotion.

That’s a pretty good deal.

This Father’s Day deal from Spartan expires June 18, Sunday night at 11:59 pm, Eastern time zone.

So here’s another deal. Spartan is giving me one free race code to give away. If you are interested, send me an email and tell me why you’d like to do a Spartan Sprint race and why you think it would challenge you. I’ll randomly select one person for the free race code. The only thing I ask is that after your race, I want you to write a short report on how these compare to a marathon or an ultramarathon.

Send me your email by midnight Saturday. June 17th and I’ll pick the winner Sunday morning. That way, even if you don’t win, you’ll have time to go to their Father’s Day promotion and use the SPARTANDAD coupon and save some cash.

You can also use the SPARTANDAD coupon as a gift for you husband or friend or significant other. Just make sure you use it before the deadline.

What Will You Do in 2017?

January 18, 2017 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Books, Foot Care, Footcare, Health, Sports 

It’s three weeks into 2017 and many people have given up on their New Year’s resolutions. Other people never made any resolutions. Whether you did or not, I want to challenge you to do something new and fun in 2017.

So what will you do?

Start where you are today and then decide on what you could do as a stretch goal.

If you do 10Ks, how about a marathon? If you run marathons, stretch yourself to a 50-mile or a 100K. If you’ve done 50 miles, aim for a 100 miler or a 24-hour run. If you have done shorter adventure races, find a multi-day longer race. If you backpack a couple of days at a time, plan a week or two week trip. If you’ve done city runs, try trails. Stretch and push yourself to something new.

Here are several other suggestions.

Have you done a Spartan Race? These very popular races are obstacles course races of short to endurance length distances. Each race involves water and mud, and their signature obstacles that will test your physical, mental, tactical and team-based skills. The four endurance races will challenge you more than ever. Spartan Races are held throughout the country. If these races interest you for 2017, check out the Spartan website as well as the two books Spartan Up! and Spartan Fit! In addition to individual races, Spartan offers three types of season passes. Do a Spartan Race and you’ll come out as more than a runner.

Or how about a thru-hike or maybe a modified thru-hike? Thru-hikes are generally those on major long-distance trails, like the Pacific Crest or the Appalachian trails. Too long? The January Backpacker magazine is dedicated to the long trails. Pick up a copy and look at the two-page spread that shows almost 50 long trails, ranging from 111 to 3100 miles. The January 6 issue of Gear Junkie had a number of predictions for 2017. One was about the growth of thru-hiking as a sport. They asked, “… will it become even more “gamified” in 2017, with athletes attempting to best one another with faster times on big, difficult objectives such as the AT, PCT, and major mountain summits?” Many athletes have been running or fast-packing these trails for years. Running long trails has become even more popular as athletes look for new challenges. I fast packed the John Muir Trail in 1987 and will never forget the experience.

Of course, in order to take on new challenges for 2017, you have to be fit. Set a goal and make a reverse calendar to determine what you have to do for training and planning.

When you increase your distances or types of events, you also need to make sure your feet are healthy. If you don’t have a copy of the 6th edition of Fixing Your Feet, check it out at Amazon.

So again I ask, what exciting and new challenge will you do in 2017?

Disclosure: The book links above are Amazon affiliate links.

I’ve Got a Pebble in My Shoe!

January 4, 2015 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Foot Care, Health, Sports 

Spartan Logo

Spartan Race

Spartan Race

Tonight I finished watching three episodes of the 2014 Spartan Races – two regional races and then the final World Championship. Regional races are about eight miles with 20+ obstacles while the World Championship is about 15 miles with 25+ obstacles.

I know. Some of you are saying. They aren’t the same as a 50-mile or 100-mile race. Ultrarunners are tough and our events are hard. Spartan Races are much shorter.

You are right of course. But. And it’s a huge “but”, Spartan Races have obstacles that I’d bet most ultrarunners could not complete. Carrying a 60-pound sandbag up and down a long grassy hill, the barbed wire roll, rope climbs, the log carry, carrying a five gallon bucket filled with rocks up and down a hill, tire pull, water obstacles, and more. In the World Championships, the sandbag carry was not one but two 60-pound bags carried up and back down a quarter mile black diamond equivalent grassy hill!

At the end of the Spartan Race World Championships, one of the top runners said, “In a triathlon, you sometimes say, ‘Ah shoot, I’ve got a pebble in my shoe – it threw my race off. This is so much beyond pebbles!’” What he’s saying is that what you think is bad in a one race is nothing in another race. Pebbles are the least of your worries in a Spartan Race.

You have to be in the best physical shape of your life for these events. So do your feet. Between the grassy hills, slick with water and mud, the muddy trails and roads, the uphills and downhills over rocky trails and roads, jumping onto and over walls, down cargo nets, and other challenges, your ankles and feet take a beating. You get junk in your shoes, and while no one in the shows complained of blisters, I am certain many of the racers had them. Just watching the shows I could see there would be sprained ankles along with other injuries.

If you can’t complete an obstacle, you have to do 30 burpees. And that’s after you failed at the obstacle. Your heart is racing and breathing is labored, and you are exhausted.

The Spartan Race website has the full series of races for 2015. Check out the website and see if this type of race interests you.

In April 2014, I wrote a review of the Reebok All-Terrain shoe designed for obstacle races like Spartan Races. Check it out here: Reebok All Terrain Shoe.

In addition, Joe Desena, the founder of Spartan Races, has a book Spartan Up! about overcoming obstacles in life, and is starting a podcast also called Spartan Up! You can subscribe at iTunes or Stitcher.

If the challenge of doing a Spartan Race interests you, here’s a code that will save you 10% on any race: SPARTANBLOGGER

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