The joy and challenge of a 24-hour event are that you don’t need to run fast to succeed. With slow, constant forward progress you can cover a huge amount of ground so that you will look back on your day and feel like you have accomplished something great.
Last year I was a last-minute addition to Pit for my daughter Kait Karel. In the two weeks before the event, I read everything I could - besides watching the requisite Pis’and’Cox Pit Crew episode - and talked to multiple athletes about how I could best help my athlete. I threw in a few of my ideas. Kait rocked WTM 2015, and I was thrilled to be a part of it and to help where I could. This past spring we resurrected our Pit-Athlete act at BFX24 in Miami.
Some people tend to learn more from their mistakes than their successes. But while mistakes can be educational, they can also be a painful way to learn. That’s especially true if those mistakes come during an epic challenge like World’s Toughest Mudder. If you’re tackling this year’s WTM, or considering giving it a go in the future, you might avoid some common mistakes by heeding the following advice.
With the 2016 OCR World Championships (OCRWC) complete athletes are already reflecting on their performances and planning on how to improve for 2017. Several comments have appeared on Facebook reflecting on which races to do to prepare for OCRWC next year. This raises the question, which race series should you fill your calendar with for 2017? That depends on your performance and areas of weakness in 2016.
The most common mistake that new endurance runners make is blowing themselves out early in the race. Without practice, it’s hard to know how hard is too hard. We’ve all gone through variations of this thinking: “It’s a race, right? So I should be in front, right? Okay!” Unless you’re superman, that thinking inevitably leads to that painful feeling near the end of the race that you’re dying and somehow can’t keep on going. For 100 milers, 24+hour events and other big endurance events, this thinking is what causes a good deal of Did Not Finish’es (DNF’s).
This is the second part in our series of reviews of training options for obstacle course racing in Southern California; last time, my friends and I hit up MROC in Oceanside; this time, we move inland to Fallbrook, and went to play with Nicole Kifer at Platinum OCR. The contrast between the two couldn't be greater. The first is in a formal and compact gym space behind a mini-mall; Platinum OCR is an outdoor obstacle course and training center built by Nicole and her family on her brother's 7-acre plot of land.
Have you been training for an obstacle race? Are you sure you know what you're doing? Truth is, there's no black and white with obstacle race training. There's just a whole lot of grey.
Picture this. You’ve just surpassed the 3-mile marker. Forearms and finger tips are cramping from 300 yards of unforgiving bucket carries. The bottoms of your feet feel heavy, your thighs are burning and just above the grassless hill you see it… The rope climb.
If you've wandered into the world of endurance, be it a GORUCK event, Spartan Hurricane Heat, Agoge, or some other iteration, then you've probably had some experience taking on a leadership role, whether by choice or nomination. A big part of the process in events like these is figuring out what works and what doesn't and how to bind a team of individuals into an effective unit.
When you’re preparing for a race, most people’s first goal is being able to run the whole distance without stopping. When you’re doing track work, people look at you with an evil or confused eye when you walk on the track. Well… let me tell you a secret: I have walked during every event that I’ve done since November of last year.