DISCLOSURE: The Spartan Race registration being given away in this post was provided to me at no cost by Reebok Spartan Race. I was not otherwise compensated for this post. All opinions expressed are my own, and not those of Reebok, NBC or their affiliates. Click here for more on my policies. You can enter to win the giveaway by scrolling to the end of this post or by clicking here to visit the Rafflecopter entry form.
Soon after we returned from our wedding trip, Jonathan found himself enrolled in the Modern Army Combatives Program’s Tactical Combatives Course Level II. Or what I’d like to call, “How to Properly Beat the Shit Out of People, This Time With Your Fists AND With Weapons!”
For the next two weeks, I watched my husband come home from work with a progression of fresh and peaking bruises, dotted like diseased green-and-purple leopard spots down his arms.
During the second week of the course, I asked Jonathan for some highlights from his day, and he pulled up his shirt to reveal a glowing streak of red on his side. The combatives instructors had introduced new weapons to the game that day: low-voltage tasers. When the students were wrestling and an instructor noticed Jonathan’s shirt hiked up mid-move, he tossed a taser to Jonathan’s opponent, who, to his credit, did not hesitate.
As I tracked his bruises through their seasons–from their summer of purples and reds to their autumn of greens and browns–Jonathan seemed occasionally worn out, but wholly unconcerned. “You’re, like, two steps away from training for the Hunger Games right now,” I told him. “Doesn’t it seem a bit…brutal?” He responded with a dismissive “meh,” and then rubbed some dried blood off his face where his split lip had reopened for the second time.
After reading about, writing about, and talking to mud fanatics about Reebok Spartan Race, I’m beginning to understand the mindset behind a balls-to-the-wall fight to the finish. That drive that keeps you pushing through to be stronger and better, even while you’re being mildly electrocuted; that lustful, primitive desire to let your adrenaline take over for your rationality, which is always annoyingly reminding you that maybe you shouldn’t go running through that blazing wall of red-hot fire. Stop holding me back from my dreams and the burn ward, rationality.
And although my resultant appreciation for combat training and obstacle races is at an all-time high, I still don’t think I’m in any place of body or mind to actually participate in either. Not that I’m afraid of obstacle races or anything, just that…I’m allergic to mud. …Yeah. Not afraid. Allergic to dirt. My doctor says I should probably stay away from gardening, too, just to be safe.
Luckily for me, Spartan Race has come up with a great way for people like me to be part of the action, without having to dive headfirst into a trench of mud to avoid the two angry men with pugil sticks whose prime directives are to concuss me to an early death.
The Spartan Race World Championship (filmed at a Spartan Beast race in Vermont which took place on the same weekend as my wedding, which is totally why I couldn’t participate) is being broadcast on NBC Sports December 7th, at 4:00pm. And since Jonathan’s attempt to teach me a simple combatives kick ended very, very poorly, I think I’m reserving myself to the couch for any future feats of strength.
As always, there is still a Spartan Race registration discount for active duty military and first responders (you can read more about the military discount program on my blog here), and there are still plenty of races going on across the country. For those of you bold enough to participate in a race from somewhere more intense than your couch, here’s another special opportunity for you:
One winner will receive a free registration for any 2013 or 2014 season Spartan Race in the continental US (check here for the race locations and schedule). The giveaway ends on Sunday at midnight. Sorry for the short contest span; our PCS move decided to land round 1 on Thanksgiving week, so I’m saying goodbye to a steady internet connection soon.
If you don’t win, or if you tune in for the championships December 7th and realize that, hey, all that mud looks great but you didn’t enter my giveaway, you’re still in luck; you can still get a 15% discount on your Spartan Race registration.
Let’s get muddy.