After having a bad experience on my first Spartan Sprint Race on a rainy cold day which was held at Temecula, CA last January 31, 2016, why would I even bother doing another. The question is why not. 🙂
A Trifecta Medal is earned once a Spartan finishes the three distance races – Sprint, Super, and Beast in a calendar year (January 1st to December 31st) anywhere in the world at any order. The Hurricane Heat doesn’t count toward as a Trifecta but the Ultra Beast will be counted as a Beast. Stadium events are considered as Sprints. Anyone can earn multiple Trifectas in a given year. I’m sticking to one for now. 😀 LoL
The 2nd medal that I need to earn was the Spartan Super which was held at Scenic Diablo Grande, CA. It’s a 30,000 acre ranch, resort, nature park, golf course and country club. Don’t be fooled by it’s location. This wide open space got lots of hills and they are pretty awesome.
To get to that location, a road trip with Dolores Grant and Sona Arutyunyan happened the night before. We all left after work on Friday. Unfortunately, the traffic was so heavy. Arrived at Motel 6 in Westley, CA around 1:30 am which is 30 minutes away from the venue.
On the day of the event, I woke up at 5:30 am and ate my early breakfast with blueberry muffins and Starbucks frappuccino drink to build my energy for the race while the other 2 ladies are still sleeping. We all got ready at 6:30 am, dressed up and checked out of the motel. As we we drove closer to the venue, I was a little worried or panic attack of the condition of my legs which was still recovering from the Rattlesnake Peak hike last Sunday. Took 3 Ibuprofen tablets prior to leaving the motel.
The weather was already warm early in the morning and it was just going to get hotter. I was advised to bring a small hydration pack for Super and Beast races since they’re both long and it really does to have them on hot days. The parking lot was located on an open flat field and unpaved area. That’s where I met Norma Leanos who I first met when both of us were volunteering Spartan Sprint in Temecula. By doing that, we both got free races from Spartan. She was also joined by Maria Balderas whom I last saw with Norma on the 3H San Bernardino Peak hike last month. They are in a team called Weeple which I joined. I went with them so to have a steady pace and enjoy the race and not chasing the best time. The 2 girls I was with are team Mudley Crew. Both of them are fast runners which I’m not. Both teams decided that we ran earlier than our start times.
As we checked our bag and installed our wristbands with the chip, we lost track of time. So, team Weeple started at 9 am while Mudley Crew started at 9:15 am which I was in. The Super Course is 8.7 miles. The Hurdles was our first obstacles. Everything was fine until we reached the Monkey Bars. I made 3/4 of the length and fell. I tried it the second time and end up the same point I fell because the bar was way up high for short guy like me to reach it. The bars found in this obstacle are larger and not your regular monkey bars found at parks or gym. This is where I lost the Dolores and Sona because they thought I went ahead after they did their burpees.
After leaving the Monkey Bars, I walked fast towards the next obstacle. That’s where I saw Norma and Maria from the back. I was so glad to see them that I’m not doing the race alone. They were joined by 3 other ladies, Neeky, Tina, and Felicia, later on.
When we reached the Barb Wire Crawl, we set aside our hydration packs, their spectator friend watched over them before we dived in. I love the new design of this obstacle because it wasn’t going straight. Rolling through wouldn’t cut it because it zigzag it’s way and has humps to slide on which was so fun. A water truck was waiting on the side and we were the lucky ones that got showered and mud free.
We conquered the 6 ft., 7 ft., 8 ft., and other type of walls together. Not a problem anymore for me except for the taller walls were I need a lift up. Missed again on the Spear Throw. After we did the Z Walls, we took some photos of each of us on the wall. I rang the bell so loud and other racers were looking and wondering what was going on. That was so funny. 😀 LoL
Then we did the Tyrolean Traverse which is one my favorite obstacle. Just watching it was tough but once I did it, it is quite easy. There are several techniques to complete this obstacle. I did the upside down routine and having calf sleeve, socks, and gloves do help from not getting rope burn.
One of my weakness is the obstacle Herculean Hoist. I heard from another racer that it weighs 120 lbs. for the men. I think I got 1 tiny blister on my finger from that. I need to work on this one for my next race. I was wowed by Norma and Maria’s friends who did so well on this obstacle and the Plate Drag. The latter obstacle always had a problem getting stuck when sand piles up. By lifting it up and continue pulling it is the way to go.
Norma, Maria and I went ahead and reached the Rope Climb. Norma went first and I followed next. Both of us successfully made it to the top and rang that bell. I stayed for a few seconds above and savored that victory of accomplishing the task. This became my favorite obstacle. 🙂
The hills kept on coming. Instead of saying when will it end, I loved every minute of those hills even with the heat from the sun. It’s funny I’ve got this energy climbing those hills. Thanks for the hiking training I’ve done this year which was mostly with the 3H family. The three of us went ahead on the course since the hills are giving the other ladies a hard time. Love the Stairway To Sparta obstacle. Sandbag Carry was tough when going up on the steep hill and back. I saw a few having leg cramps going up. Mine almost started to pop but rested a few seconds and continued. Then there’s that Bucket Brigade.
Maria, Norma, and Myself at Mile 6
After all those hills and the heat, it was time to get back in the mud. 🙂 Rolling Mud that is. I soaked myself under the muddy water. I even floated for a few seconds but I must not stay too long because there are other racers coming. 😀 LoL
We also realized that there are a lot of water stations this time around. Thank you Spartan organizers for thinking of that and answered our requests. 🙂 There was one station giving away electrolyte gels from one of the sponsors. Great idea!
The other hardest obstacle for me was the Atlas Carry which I need more training on. I’m not a weightlifter but for the next race, I have to at least try to do this one.
Almost at the final stretch, the Multi Rig is also a favorite of mine. I was dangling at the 2 ropes at the end and I remembered that no kicking at the bell. I could’ve made it by kicking it but I tried just using my hands and I fell. 😦 Next time!
The last obstacle was the Slip Wall which was another favorite of mine. An easy pull up the wall and climbing down. And there it is … the Finish Line. Got my medal, banana, shirt, and a Fit drink.
Norma and Maria joined their families while I search for Dolores and Sona. I finally saw them at the shower station. We cleaned as much as we can. Met some new friends there. The 2 ladies later changed clothes while I did that at the parking lot. We later went around the festival and took some photos. Got my beer and savored it.
We head back to the parking lot and along the way we saw Hugo Frausto, whom I met at RUT Camp in Signal Hill, Long Beach, CA. He also finished his race. We shared our stories and got back to our cars. I changed and later on, Dolores drove us back to Los Angeles with stop overs for dinner at Panda Express and a rest stop.
Overall, the experience this time around was amazing and fun. Loved every moment of it. No purple bruises also this time but minor cuts on my middle fingers and a small blister from pressure of holding the ropes. I didn’t even feel exhausted after the race which was funny. I wonder if the coffee I drank later has something to do with it. 😀 So … next stop … the Beast on September 17th at Pala Raceway in Pala, CA. See you all there!