I played football for a few years in high school, but that’s where my athletic career began and ended. My focus turned more towards music, videography, and photography. After high school, I began shooting and editing music videos for local bands around town. That eventually evolved into photography and through various contacts, I started shooting sports around town ranging from high school all the way up to college and professional MLS and NHL teams.
When I moved to Colorado my friends introduced me to Spartan and Tough Mudder. I had never run anything like this before. I never had the desire, but I needed something in my life to motivate me to get out of bed and get to the gym and improve my health. I compete in OCR not only because it has turned into a passion, but it keeps me fit both mentally and physically.
Almon R. Cox is this week's Faces at the Races spotlight. Cox hit rock bottom when he found himself in jail for substance abuse. Since that time he has used obstacle racing as a path to a fit and healthy life. Read his story in this week's spotlight.
OCR is great physical and mental challenge and every race feels like an adventure. There’s an element of surprise where you can’t predict with absolute certainty how everything will play out.
I am a 52-year-old leukemia survivor who is in the middle of a major life transformation. I just discovered obstacle course racing this year and it has become my new passion in life and a major factor in my losing over 40 pounds in the past year. I am married to my awesome wife, Sandy, and have three awesome sons, Grey, Seth, and Kade, who I am trying to share my newfound passion with. I am a Software Solution Architect with a focus and passion on the power of leveraging data and advanced analytics to better the world.
In a broad perspective, my favorite part about the sport is how literally anyone can get involved. Since some courses are only three miles, it doesn’t take much training to be able to be complete a course. An amateur strongman, bodybuilder or triathlete has to put in many hours of training and dieting to even complete one event.
I love to compete and meet others who can make me better through completion and camaraderie. I have come to learn more about myself through this sport only third to the Marines and academics.
I grew up very active in sports and played a little over a year of college football. OCR gives me that opportunity to still feel competitive. OCR also allows me to push myself further than I have in any sport I have ever played and I love pushing myself to see how far I can truly go.
My first race was Malibu 2013 and it was COLD!! Not knowing what I was getting into, we went hard out the gate. I was huffing and puffing so hard, I literally thought I wasn’t going to make it. I was slipping everywhere because I was in experienced and was wearing Nike Frees! I failed pretty much every obstacle out there (rope climb, monkey bars, spear) so I was drowning in burpees. I wanted to cry because I was so tired and so cold. I kept asking myself “why did I sign up for this”! But then I crossed the finished line and earned my first medal. After that, I was hooked.
After our third kid, Emily (my killer awesome wife) starting working out hard in the most inconvenient times (early morning and late night) to lose the baby weight. She proved to me that it can be done and that health is important. The “I need to change” moment occurred in my parents’ kitchen. My dad squeezed my shoulder and said, “That extra weight looks good on you Rick. Makes you look like a man.” I wear my weight well, and he was sincere. I looked stronger, but it was just a layer of fat. It was the first time that someone, excluding Emily, acknowledged the “extra weight.”