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Friday, August 25, 2017

Spartans take over Hawaii August 2017

The night before the trifecta is really where I Test all the mental training I have done. As my head wraps around my next adventure and goes off into crazy directions- I then learn to listen to my stomach.

My gut is the direct route to my sub conscious and as my mind has a hard time accepting my reality, my stomach has a lot to tell me.

My gut tells me I'm ready for this trifecta weekend.
I have traveled a lot this year and have done a couple of races back to back.
I have completed the obstacles training certification course.
I've watched the videos and read the blog posts.

Hawaii 2017- My first and last Spartan Beast- 14th/17 races for 2017

Aloha. Welcome to my complete experience of Spartans Take over Hawaii in 2017.

It was awesome, it was hot, it was exhausting, it was exhilarating, and I got to play in the ocean so I was a super happy camper.  I’m still peeling from my sun tan/ burn two weeks later.
So let’s start from the beginning. Thursday August 3rd I had personal training clients until 11:30 a.m. and then I headed down to Willits to pick up my bestie  so we can go off for a weekend on Oahu to do this big and scary race.

It took forever because, you know, the dang slide in between Piercy and Leggett. Seriously the first hour of traveling was in traffic. Then I finally got to Willits to pick her up and on we went on our way.

I had to meet someone in south city which had me going across San Francisco in rush hour traffic and questioning if we were going to make our flight at 10:30 p.m.

It took me 7 hours to get from Piercy to San Mateo. I need a private plane to do all my racing and traveling in the future. A helicopter would be nice too.

We caught the red eye flight to Hawaii so we could save some money on a hotel room and sleep on the plane and wake up in Hawaii. Well that idea worked great for me. Apparently I can sleep very well on planes. My friend on the other hand – couldn’t -and ended up being very sleep deprived and almost delusional on her first day.
We switched planes in Vegas and hoped on a Alaskan Airline flight. Our seats wouldn’t go back and it was a very uncomfortable sleep. I did buy an eye mask and pillow and found every which way to adjust my body in a chair to find the best for sleeping. Including putting the tray down and resting my head in my arms.

5 a.m. Hawaii time we arrived.

We found our rental car place and there were Spartans in front of us and Spartans behind us. I was fresh on the island and asked them all about their race experiences and what they were doing this weekend. We saw Spartans all over the island. On the beach, in the restaurants, Spartan logos on cars, Spartan flags…. It’s like we were pirates that made the voyage for the treasure chest.

After a while I got tired of talking to people about their Spartan experiences.

Plus our check in time to our Air B N B was a 4p.m. so we had 11 hours to kill before we could cuddle up in our own rooms and sleep this tried trip off before we hit our big  race.
We went to the Spartan event site and walked around, only to find out the starting line was a mile and a half in the valley and we actually were technically allowed to walk around the race course yet.

We found where we were going to park and catch the shuttle.

We drove up the island and hung out on the beautiful white sand beaches, we ate food at this awesome farm to table place and shopped at 7-11 for essentials like spray vitamins (that I just kept spraying in my mouth the entire time I was in Hawaii), flip flops, water and snacks.

We went out to dinner and by 4 p.m. we checked into this AWESOME air b n b where one of our hosts was doing the race as well for the weekend and went immediately to sleep.

When we talked to our first new Spartan friends in the car rental line, (that morning at 6 a.m.) he stated how he got so excited for the ultra beast he completed recently that he couldn’t sleep the night before.

This was not the case with us. We were exhausted. Polite enough just to check into our Air BNB and then crash. We were tired. We were exhausted. And when we slept; we slept like the dead.

I just told my friend I’ll see you in 12 hours and by 5 am we were up and making breakfast for our long journey into Jurassic Park.
Why do I love racing? I love racing for this moment- 5 a.m. just before the race. This is the time I get uncomfortable. The anticipation is exhilarating. And I know by the end of the day- today- I’m going to be a completely different person.

I let go of a lot before a race.
The person who pissed me off for this or that- forgiven.
The problem I was wondering about- forgotten.
My personal dislikes about myself- loved.
My past training and life experience- upgraded.
Wondering how I got in this mess- and how I will survive? full force.

Life is so much different before the race. My perspective completely changes.
I am a whole new person transforming right before my eyes.
So we get to kalula ranch and park. Waiting for the shuttle we run into the cross fit owners from back home a few people in line behind us. The guy signed up for the boston trifecta and is hoping he can get it switched. He is also starting at 7:30 a.m with the elite men and its 7:00 a.m. right now and we aren’t even on the shuttle. His wife will be running tomorrow and came to cheer him on today.

We get to the starting line and see our friends from the gym. Southern Humboldt Fitness and Strength Chamber Cross fit meet again in Hawaii!  It was really fun to do a destination race. We all work out a lot and it was cool to see how our training had paid off.

Our original start time was 8:15 but we got moved up to 8 a.m. We did make it in time to watch the elite men start (my FAVORITE part of racing- YUM!!!) and the elite women as well.

The last elite women to enter the corral was my biggest inspiration of the race. She was overweight and had a crew of people (like 4) to help her through the race and the obstacles.

The classic Spartan start line has a 5 foot wall you must jump just to get to the start line. If you have a hard time getting up and over this wall- you are going to have a very hard race.

This woman needed 2 people to help her up and over the wall just to get to the starting line. She was walking the 13 mile race. I knew from the first moment I saw her try to get over the wall that her race would be a long one.

As I ran past her- I told her that she was my number one inspiration for this race and no matter what I was going through with my struggles- they would seem like cake compared to what she had to go through during this race.

We are all fighting our own inner demons.
So lalalala the race is going great. My friend and I are way undertrained for this half marathon with obstacles but who cares? Were in Hawaii and no matter what we are crossing that finish line.

My friend requested that if the helicopter tried to take her out- I’m too drag her body off the helicopter and drag her across the finish line. We didn’t come all this way to get disqualified.

We are running and doing great, jumping walls and going through water and blah blah blah… this place is so beautiful… it’s hot and humid and then we get to the bucket carry.

To me the bucket carry is a bitch but also a piece of cake. You want to get through this obstacles as quickly as possible. You DON’T EVER NOT NEVER put the bucket down. If you have to rest it on your leg- but that’s it.

So I push hard through this- every time. I’m practically speed walking through this obstacle. And I finish and take a seat and wait for my friend. And wait and wait. And heck where is she?
5 minutes later she makes it- informing me that she almost passed out. Oh shit I thought- we need to slow this down and pace ourselves.

But of course we didn’t. Flying over walls and making our way up this super muddy mountain in the middle of the fucking jungle- holding onto muddy trees and ropes just to get up this dang mountain.

Peoples shoes were coming off because the mud was sucking them up.

And then we passed Jeff’s dad.

Now Jeff’s dad is 70 years old and he is doing the beast.  He took a little break and let people pass him as we are going up this super muddy back country road. We have our little bonding moment and then we are off.

We had a memory test which we completed and passed fair and square. We did have sharpies and were thinking about writing it down but then decided to race the race without cheating. And later on we did complete the obstacle and I was jumping and cheering for joy!!!!

You have to remember that it takes a lot of energy to complete an endurance race of this sort and brain power is the biggest zapper of energy. This would be an easy obstacle to miss if you haven’t been taking your fish oil or omega 3’s!!!

The three obstacles I missed were the traverse rope (should of went over instead of under, the spear throw and the twister).

Everything else I could complete fine.

Tire carries, log carries, farmer log carries, wall jumps at any height, barb wire crawl (I did feel like throwing up with too much rolling), A frame, Sand bag carry was tough ( I had to stop and was squatting and holding the sand bag until someone came up behind me and told me I got this- I said ok- because you said I got this is the only reason I’m moving forward- thank you stranger- we are all in this together!)

Hercules hoist was fine, almost lost it on the Olympus but made it! Rope climb was brutal and I had some narly rope burn after.  Fire jump and wha- la. My first beast complete.

The thing was – I didn’t pack enough fuel for this 6 hour and 41 minute race. And I was so hungry for the second half of the race I decided to walk to conserve energy so I could complete the obstacles in the end.

I was so hungry I was contemplating if I could beat up the wonderful and friendly volunteers and get their food. I was so hungry I contemplated eating food out of the trash.
I was so hungry- all I could think about was that I was dead and that I may never eat again. Maybe I died and heaven was like an all you could eat buffet that I would reach on the other side.

I got a really weird survival instinct for food. And what a blessing it is to eat everyday – 3-5 times a day.

Now every time I eat I say that you to the universe.  Eating is so wonderful and so essential to life. Food is medicine and medicine is food.

Back to the race...

Half way up a mountain was where my friend and I got separated.  I had to take a break and she said she would meet me at the top. Once I got to the top she was already running down it.

Her story was that she thought I was behind her and when she said, "do you want to run all the way down- I said yes." Except it wasn’t me saying yes but another racer that looked like me from the corner of my friends eye.

So left all alone on this island with no food- racing my little heart away- to get through it I just told myself as long as Jeff’s 70 year old dad doesn’t pass me- I’m good. Which was good until I was doing my burpees for the missed spear throw and guess who passes me- Jeff’s dad. lol.

So then I told myself that even if I came in last place- I totally got my money’s worth!!!

And yeah- so we didn’t train for this race. I had my epiphany that training for all these Spartan races and obstacle races just takes way too much time and it was time for me to specialize in ONE RACE.


So I decided that local 5k’s would be my race.

Long endurance events really wear and tear on the body and I didn’t see myself doing a long endurance race in 10 years.

But 5k’s!! 5k’s turn me on!!! I could definitely see myself running and winning 5k’s in 10 years and beyond. This is a race where I could work my fast twitch muscles and really build muscle instead of having it wither away from long endurance events. Plus 5k’s are short. Going from 30 minutes and shorter and shorter as the years go on.

My goal is to run a 5 k in just over 18 minutes. – 6 minute miles. And to have my name on the record books for the Humboldt Redwoods 5k. in Weott, CA.

So the whole time I was going through this race I TOTALLY GAVE MYSELF PERMISSION TO SUCK!!!!!!!!!! What a concept. Instead of being kinda good at a lot of things – I Have changed my way of thinking to actually sucking at a lot of things but being the best in the world at one thing.

So I had to pick one race that I can just smoke everyone under the sun at and I choose the 5k.

I also thought there was going to be a giant uproar in my little racing community when I announced this to my closest racing friends and all they said was “COOL!”.

My one buddy who I met in Monterey- who’s only real connection to me is Spartan races was actually happy for me on “finding my race”.

I told another buddy of mine and at first he didn’t believe me when I said I was going to stop Spartan Racing. And then he was like yeah whatever- well see what you really do.

It was really amazing and I realized that no one really cares what I’m doing in the race community as long as I’m still racing.

  Anyways, I was suppose to do the trifecta weekend in Hawaii but at 3 a.m. I made the executive decision to skip the 2 races on Sunday and go hang out on the beach instead. I told my friend at 5 a.m. Sunday morning with her response being- “You’re a crazy bitch, and I would of supported you racing today- but I’m so happy you're not!)

We had a wonderful day hanging on the beach, checking out pearl harbor and then getting our flight delayed until the next morning and sleeping in the airport. Catching another flight the next day and then heading home.

The shortest trip to Hawaii I ever made in my life. But also the most memorable.  My friend wants to go back and hike stair way to heaven with her boyfriend. I told her not to die.

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