The Reebok Spartan Race Carolina Beast returned to Carolina Adventure World this past November. It marked my second beast but as with last year, it didn’t look like I would be racing this one. Rather, I would just be doing it to complete the 2015 Trifecta.
In an effort to save some money, Amanda and I decided to volunteer for this race and then run in the volunteer heat later in the day. I also wanted to be as fresh as possible the next day while also ensuring that I got the 2015 Trifecta. I had made it known that the Sunday Sprint was my 2015 target race, and I really wanted to run well at it. It would also be a cool opportunity to run with Amanda. So, with all of these factors, we decided to see the volunteer experience and rock out the volunteer heat.
We actually enjoyed volunteering. We were stationed at the start line assisting runners with hydration – really, we were just filling water cups. We had a great time, though, and ended up figuring out some pretty efficient ways to ensure that we had enough water cups without actually doing a ton of work.
The first part of the morning was really, really cold. We’re talking below freezing cold. We’re talking the water was freezing in the cups cold. As soon as the sun came up, this got significantly better. Overall, it was pretty cool and I think that we’re considering doing it again. For $14, you really can’t beat the price.
While volunteering, we met a young man named Alan. We talked a lot during the morning about our experiences with OCR, my sponsorship with Legend Race, and just what we were hoping to get out of the experience. This was going to be Alan’s first trifecta and his goal was just to finish. With about an hour left in our shift, Alan asked if he could run with us. We absolutely said yes. I told him not to let us slow him down. He assured that we wouldn’t. Spoiler – we ran the whole way together and it was actually a really good experience.
Amanda and I started and prepped for the 12.7 mile race.
This had an interesting start. Less than 150 meters into the race, you went straight into water. And it was cold. The emcee kept telling people to keep moving forward. While volunteering, we kept watching people get to the water and literally stop. Super funny.
Throughout the rest of the early parts of the race, we came across typical Spartan obstacles. A-Frame. Rope Climb. Traverse Wall.
The rope climb was interesting because there wasn’t water you had to jump in first.
There were also two barbed wire crawls. The first wasn’t muddy at all. The second, at the same location as last years, more than made up for that as it was crazy muddy and swampy.
One of the new things for this race was that it was the first time I have encountered the Memory Test. Mike-0255877. We had said that we wouldn’t try to say ours out loud. There was a kid that we passed that was constantly saying his out loud. I wanted to punch him and we picked up our pace to get through that part of the course quicker.
One of the best parts of this race for me was that I didn’t have to set the bucket down in the bucket brigade. Getting better there.
Amanda and I have near perfected her getting over the walls. We don’t even have to talk about it anymore. I will just run to the wall, bend over, and she’ll place both feet on my back. I will then literally just stand up. She’ll grab the wall and get over. I will run to the other side to help her down. She’ll keep running while I do I mine and then I’ll catch up to her. It’s a pretty efficient system that we’ve got figured out.
The sun ended up going down with us still having approximately an hour left on the course. This led to one of my most favorite running experiences, ever. Amanda and I got to race with our head-lamps.
We passed so many people who were moving exceptionally slow because they didn’t have a head-lamp. It was also super swampy during this part. But we were flying through this part. It was a ton of fun and we both really enjoyed this part of the race. The only downfall was that Amanda got pretty cold.
Because we started so late, there weren’t a ton of photos that were taken of us.
Amanda ended up racing well. When I run with her, it is certainly about her time versus me getting through the course quickly. That’s for my Spartan Sprint.
Top 22% of her age group.
Top 19% of all women.
Top 37% overall.
We immediately got our photo taken and then hit the car. Amanda was super cold and we wanted to get some food to prepare for the next day. We were in and out and didn’t even rinse off after the race. We had another race to prepare for the next day.