For many, the month of February and the coming of Valentine's Day inspires feelings of love, but for OCR addicts, this time of year signifies so much more: the start of a new racing season!

This month, we’re busting out new trail shoes, chasing new goals, and running new races. The 2020 race season is upon us and boy are we ready to hit the trails! We love OCR enough to train, travel, and torture ourselves…but WHY? What is it that sparks this love affair with barb wire and multi-rigs?

So in the spirit of love, let's take some time to reflect on why we love OCR…

  • For the physical health benefits.

Running, jumping, pushing, pulling – OCR calls on our strength, agility, and endurance – a trifecta of physical health. OCR also keeps us agile and “trained for real-life” – think of the endurance needed to chase the kids around the backyard or the strength needed to carry the groceries into the house in one oversized trip. Thank you WOD.

  • For the mental health benefits.

Remember the confidence you gained crossing your first finish line? Earning your first spot on a podium? Climbing your first rope? Nothing beats it – accomplishing something you once believed to be beyond your reach is an incredible endorphin booster and a huge reason we love this sport. What’s more, is that our training can help reframe our view of health by encouraging a focus on what we can physically DO versus a number on the scale. In this respect, OCR instills confidence and teaches us to love ourselves for what our bodies and minds can conquer. Plus, with ever-changing distances, obstacles, and events to support, there are endless “firsts” to be had and opportunities to impress ourselves. Bonus: OCR also serves as a metaphor that we can handle the unexpected, hard, gritty stuff that life throws our way.

  • For healthy competition.

For most of us, true competition can be hard to come by after the days of organized sports in high school or college are behind us; however, OCR returns that outlet to all ages.


  • For inspiration and accountability.

In the OCR community, we see people of all ethnicities, career backgrounds, physical makes, ages, and more. We are inspired by our peers and community members who complete courses in wheelchairs or alongside a service dog, by mothers, by children…we see a community that is accessible to anyone given the right supports. Thus, seeing others achieve success inspires us to strive for success of our own. Bonus: having a race on the calendar gives us a reason to train and stay motivated in our daily fitness regimen.

  • For social connection.

OCR fosters communication, teamwork, and camaraderie. Whether it be joining a local OCR team, recruiting your longtime friends and family to run with you, meeting new friends on the course, or interacting with the OCR community on social media, OCR has given us a beautiful outlet for growing our community and for strengthening our personal connections.

  • For “The Gram”.

Is there anything more satisfying than showing off your strength and passions in photo form? Most races provide action photos for free and for that, we are grateful. OCR has given us profile pictures for life!


  • For being fun!

As OCR enthusiasts, the world is our playground! We spend our evenings and weekends outdoors, reaping the benefits of vitamin D and fresh air. OCR allows us to channel our inner child and relive the simpler days of playing on monkey bars and crawling through the mud. On race weekend, we let loose the worries of the workweek, and get down and dirty with our friends and a finish line brew.

For these reasons and SO many more, we heart OCR.

What are the reasons that YOU love OCR? Let us know in the comments below.

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Disclaimer: The viewpoints expressed by the authors do not necessarily reflect the opinions, viewpoints and official policies of Mud Run Guide LLC, or their staff. The comments posted on this Website are solely the opinions of the posters.