The Spartan Super was a fun, but challenging race. The course consisted of roughly 8 miles of up and down the mountain. I was lucky enough to join up with a pair of walkers right off the starting corral, and we set a comfortable, though hard, pace for the long journey. This was another walked race for me, due both to the distance and my recent injury. Since my concussion, I have not done any running or physical fitness training, so this race was going to be tough on my body. Mentally, I was unprepared for a “real” Spartan race, having done only the relatively easy Connecticut Sprint this year, which did not include some of Spartan’s toughest obstacles.
Spartan started with the obstacles right from the get go on this race. After the initial climb, you had a ridiculously long barbed wire crawl through mud and water. It felt like a quarter mile, but the water felt great with the heat. My arms and knees were torn up after this one. The next obstacle was the monkey bars. I gave them a shot, but I couldn't hold on, since the “bars” were more like pipes, and I have tiny hands. So on to the burpees for me. I had to do my burpees painfully slowly to avoid getting dizzy, as has been easily too easily since my concussion last month.
New to me was the swimming obstacle. I had yet to see any distance swimming at an OCR event until this race. I scoped out the lake and decided that I could handle the swim without one of the offered life jackets. I followed the thick trail of people out to the dock, swimming when the water became too deep for me (I’m short). Climb up, cross the dock, grab a life jacket if you need to, then jump into the water and swim to shore. I had no problems completing this obstacle, and even managed to take a selfie along the way. … I didn't say it was a good one. 🙂
The next challenging obstacle was the log carry. I selected a smaller log, hefted it up onto my shoulder like I knew what I was doing. At this point, a nearby storm was close enough to close certain obstacles, like a water crossing. We carried on, but then all obstacles were stopped, so I missed the sandbag carry as well. Continuing on, we reached the bucket carry, where finally, the race itself was paused. After a short wait, the race was resumed and nearly all obstacles reopened, with one notable exception. At this point, my new-found friends opted out of the bucket carry, but I had to try it, as it was new to me. It was TOUGH, but I did it! Up a hill and back down again.
After the bucket carry came the rope climb, which was closed due to the water beneath the rope. Moving on to the traverse wall, I got about half way across and lost my balance, on an obstacle that is usually easy for me. More burpees. And then even more burpees at the spear throw. After hiking back up the mountain, there was a tire obstacle on the side of the hill. Carry the tire to the end of the rope, drop it, then, pull it back up the hill to the start position. This was extremely tough for me, until I caught a couple tricks from other people nearby. I used the metal stake that the rope was attached to and braced my foot against it to pull the tire towards me. Another difficult obstacle overcome!
The tractor pull was a concrete block on a heavy chain, which you had to drag up and down a short loop. There was a slick wall and a fire jump and then you were at the finish line. After 8+ miles, my whole body was shaking and sore. I spent roughly 5 hours on the course.
I give this race a 4 out of 5 stars, owing to the challenge and difficulty of the race. The obstacles and terrain were pretty darn tough.
Did you do the New Jersey Super Spartan? Share your own rating & review about the event today!