I am just an average Joe. I can run 3 miles on a good day. I don’t lift weights, use the machines at the gym or otherwise train seriously. But I love a challenge and fell in love with OCR immediately. My philosophy is: I may not be the best runner, but I WILL do all the obstacles.
Muckfest MS was a fun course, but it rained ALL DAY. I ran the 9:30 heat with the NE Spahtens, my very first race with the team. Despite the rain, we were excited to get started. The MC said “go” and we were immediately bottlenecked at the first obstacle where you had to climb over dirt mountains and down into knee height pools of mud. BRR, right off the bat.
After that, the pack spread right out and it was a nice, slow run for me. There was some crawling through mud, climbing cargo nets, and some gentle hills, but one steep down-and-up hill. There was a cool ropes course style spiderweb that you had to crawl or otherwise maneuver yourself through. This was set up beneath a later obstacle, the cargo net, where you had to climb up and over the spiderweb. They also have an obstacle called “Big Balls” which are giant, hanging, inflatable balls that you have to run through as they move around.
The most physically challenging obstacle was “The Spinner,” where you had to grab onto a rope and ride around in a giant circle, over a circular muddy pit. I know my words aren't doing the ride justice… feel free to check the race’s website for pictures! I locked my feet around the rope and managed to stay on for the entire ride and was quite happy with myself.
This race had more mental challenges than physical ones, though. The most skipped obstacle was a giant pit of muddy water, covered in a black out tarp that you had to crawl through on hands and knees. Towards the end of the race was a mini version of the infamous Tough Mudder jump; a platform about 7 feet high, with a water landing. As if that wasn't enough water, it was followed by a swing set that you had to time your jump into the water. My friend bailed off the swing set and just jumped into the water on this one.
The race was fun and a little challenging, but the finish line was downright disappointing. No cheering, no medals, no T-shirts. I understand that not every race has a finisher’s prize, and I later saw an email saying the T-shirts didn't arrive in time and would be mailed, but c'mon. No cheering crowds at the end. After the final obstacle (a bland crawl through a tunnel), we ran across the finish line and were like, “Huh? Is that it? Are we done now?” All the crowds were at the water jumps, and the final obstacle just wasn't enticing enough to watch; even the cameramen found more interesting places to be. Oh well, at least the rest of the race was fun, even in the rain.
After the full submersion obstacles, I was soaked to the bone. It took us approximately 15 minutes to get our gear and get changed; by then I had blue lips and was shivering badly. We hoped in our truck and turned the heat on full blast. Another teammate had to go to the medic’s tent to warm up. The cold set in immediately after you stopped running and was relentless, like the rain.
In the end, the race was approximately 3 miles and took me 1:04 to complete. The course was missing a couple obstacles compared to the website’s course map, but it was a fun race and I would do it again.
I give it a 3.5, just above average. It was fun, slightly challenging, but accessible to everyone.
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