On August 17, Hawaii had its first ever Spartan Race. The race was held on Kualoa Ranch which is the extremely scenic, undeveloped area where many movies (Jurassic Park, 50 First Dates, Godzilla) and TV shows (LOST, Hawaii 5-0) were filmed.
Spartan Races are obstacle races that are held worldwide. They combine running with physically challenging obstacles that include a lot of water, mud, barbed wire, and fire. The course was over 3 miles long (up and down many steep hills) and had 15 obstacles to complete.
I joined a group of ladies from my neighborhood to run the race. We actually trained for this and prepared matching costumes. We went as a group of Spartan Cheerleaders from the Saturday Night Live skits. The outfits, bought from Amazon, were polyester disasters so we did a lot of alterations to make them work for this race. I think we looked pretty good... especially with that incredible view behind us!
The parking lot was 1.5 miles from the start of the race... it was a nice warmup on the way there but not so much fun on the walk back after the race.
We had some gorgeous views near the end of the trail! This is the East side of the island - so beautiful!
The few first obstacles we encountered included walking through a chest-deep river, walking through three mud pits of varying mud consistency, and crawling through mud under barbed wire. We were wet, smelly, and dirty for the entire race.
Seriously... the view was incredible all around us! In case you are wondering, most of this island does not look like this. It was such a treat to be surrounded by such beauty.
I successfully completed all of the obstacles except for the last one... a rope climb. I was going to at least try but changed my mind after seeing muscular people struggle and fall into the waist-deep mud under the ropes. Two of the girls in our group tried and one actually made it very close to the top.
The scenery was a-maz-ing the entire race which made up for some of the race's downfalls. This was the first year for the race and it definitely has some improvements to make for next year.
It was disgusting, it was smelly, and it hurt... but it was fun and we all feel pretty badass for finishing :)
"What mattered was the joy, the fun, the sheer thrill
and the accompanying realization of 'I did it'!"