From my nappy brother:
People kept asking me if I was ready for the race, but honestly, the race wasn’t ready for me. I was sure of it, from the moment we parked the car outside of the Warrior Dash, this race was beneath me. That’s not to say I didn’t think it would be fun, I was honest when I told my sister that I looked forward to it, but when she kept insisting that “This is the real deal,” I just nodded. Of course this sort of thing might be hard for someone like her, but I had been training for this for over a month, running 5Ks over intense Missouri hills. I was ready.
We dropped our bags at the check in, and made our way toward the starting line, past the beer vendor and concert stage. Several times I had heard this race referred to as a “mud run”, and as I wandered to where the others were gathering I thought I knew why. There was a squelching noise that accompanied every step I took towards the starting area. Wet grass and dirt clung to my shoes, but it was nothing I hadn’t run in before. “WARRIOR DASH” was splashed in bright red across a black banner above the runners. Speakers blasted music all around us, and twin flame jets spat hot fire into the air above us. The race had begun, and I was ready.
About ten or so minutes in I realized that there was significantly more mud than I had anticipated. The mud sucked my shoe up to my ankle with every step, and it was all I could do to keep a brisk pace without twisting my foot clean off my body. I thought I had long since left my sister and her husband in the dust, until my brother in law, Ben, passed me by with a nonchalant “Sup?”
Eventually I was trudging downhill, and then suddenly I was sliding. Soon every step sent me slipping left and right along the trail. “This is terrible” Ben concluded, and I agreed. This was definitely the worst kind of mud to run in. I slid into a puddle with a massive splash. When I looked down I saw that I was up to my knees in muddy water. I stood corrected. Ben plowed on, and I would not be left behind.
During the course of the run we lifted ourselves over walls, walls that gradually grew higher and higher. Upon reaching the top of one particular wall and looking down over the other side I remembered that I was in fact afraid of heights. I laughed to myself as I grabbed the mud-slick rope and began my descent; it was a little late to be scared now.
Eventually came the final stretch of the race, and I was swimming underneath barbed wire in brown, gritty water. I had lost my glasses in the mud at this point, and there was no hope of finding them. I was exhausted as I lifted myself out of the last pit, covered from my head to my toes in wet, clinging earth, and all that I had waiting for me in the baggage I brought with me was a clean pair of sandals, but I did it. I wasn’t ready, but I did it anyway. Story of my life!