BattleFrog Tampa, Fl - March 12, 2016 - Why I Race
|The "Before" of My Husband Paul and I|
|The Crew: Mud Run Fun|
|DON'T BE LATE|
|The BFX Tent|
The start time of the BFX wave was at 8:30 AM and before racers were sounded off Coach Dewayne gave one last “Hooyah” motivational speech. If you have never heard this man talk before, it is a MUST. Every time I listen to him before a BattleFrog start I get goosebumps. I was lucky enough to find a friend (Joel Doughtery) who video recorded his BFX speech in Tampa. Check it out at: https://youtu.be/GwekUzCZCqk Now if that wasn’t motivating, I don’t know what is…. As Coach Dewayne says, “Handle YOUR Business.” With his finish, the gun fired and we were off!
|The beginning of the MOUNDS|
|Climbing Up a Wall|
|Jucking Ferry Cans!|
Lap 1) Lap 1 was great! The race was everything I had hoped for and it exceeded my expectations. I ran with my husband and a group of friends who helped each other over the high walls, pushed each other to keep going, and we finished in less than 2 hours. We all took a 10 min break to refuel for lap 2 and were off!
|Horsing Around on Lap 2!|
Lap 3) Lap 3 was when my legs were beginning to get tired and my arms were starting to hurt. Luckily I was running it with an awesome woman who helped me through a few obstacles and I will swear saved my life on one…which also happened to be the one I banged my left knee on as I was falling. As we were running to the next obstacle pain was shooting up my leg. The mental blocks started to kick in and I told her to run ahead, I would meet her at the finish. After a second of hesitation off she went… I can’t blame her at all… I wasn’t even sure I was going to get through the 3rd lap and get my medal because I started to feel my knee swell. I made it to the last obstacle limping my way through, completed my body builders and had a choice. I had made it back 20 minutes before the cut off time for racers to pass before they closed the BFX start. To my left was the finish…I could go, claim my medal, get my 3 stars and wait for Paul at the tent with my well-earned free beer. To my right was the beginning of the course again. I hesitated and paused… all of a sudden out of nowhere I heard all my friends, acquaintances, and strangers call my name from the BFX tent. All at once I heard the “C’mon Krissie, you got this, one more lap, you are NOT finished, it will be easy…you can do it.” You see, the thing with BFX is that throughout the race, you get to know all the people running the BFX because you see them multiple times, you stop and chat, ask them what lap they are on, tell them they are doing great, and motivate each other constantly. It’s a feeling that cannot be replaced with anything in the world. My girlfriend who I had let run ahead was just about to start her 4th lap and yelled “Let’s go Krissie” last one! As I mentally contemplated if my knee could handle it I must have spoken something out loud because before I knew it my camel back was on, filled with water, and I had 3 Excedrin in my hand someone had given me. I swallowed the pills and off I went for lap 4.
|Lap 4 - Let's Be Silly|
Lap 4) As I was hobbling yet slowly jogging for the first mile mentally I was thinking “Why am I running 4 laps again?” Luckily I had my girlfriend and a few others keeping me company and whom I kept in view for most of the miles. This final lap I walked….I walked a lot…outside of the Excedrin I didn’t stop at the BFX tent prior to this lap to eat or properly take in any nutrition for fear of not continuing. Luckily I had some Zingers and granola bars in my camel-back which I gratefully thanked myself for bringing. I tried as many obstacles as I could, and surprisingly completed some…. For the ones I didn’t I gladly gave into doing 10 body builders. People started catching up with me and asking me where was Paul, how am I doing? How many laps? Am I okay? Everyone was cheering me on and saying they were impressed and how great of a job I was doing. How is a person supposed to fail when they have this much support!!!!?!! It’s impossible. The last 2 miles of the race I was alone and was able to do a walk/jog combo….but mentally I kept thinking “did I pass this part on the last lap? I don’t remember it… was that tree there? Am I going the right way?” It’s funny how your brain begins to process things when you are close to exhaustion. I’m pretty sure I saw water station that was actually a fence pole, and cat that was actually a shrub. By the time I rounded the corner to see the last obstacle “Tip of the Spear” I could have dropped to my knees in thanks….but they hurt… so that wasn’t a smart option. I ran up, performed my 10 body builders and someone yelled “Krissie do 1 more for the race”…. I thought… “Who in the hell?…I’m going to kill them…but okay” … and did 1 more just because….
|Mike the Volunteer|
Upon finishing I ran (which was more like a hobble jog looking back … but felt like a sprint at the time) to cross the finish line and was met by a volunteer who I now know is named Mike. He placed my BFX medal around my neck and I hugged him….had I ever met this man before in my life?.... Nope…. But I just held on to him like an old friend, so thankful to be done…. And what’s great about that particular moment was that he hugged back knowing how tired and thankful I was. So, finish line volunteer Mike… thank you from the bottom of my heart.
I had completed 20ish miles along with 120+ Obstacles and I was so proud of myself. I met up with Paul who had changed and I made sure he was feeling better. He had completed 15 miles and 90+ obstacles. After cooling down for a few moments, and taking in the feeling of being done, we packed up and made our way to Outback to meet up with the rest of our crew to get some serious food in our stomachs.
The biggest thing which kept me going the entire race was the community of other BFX and BattleFrog racers out on the course. We are all a very unique breed and motivate each other as if we’ve been best friends for years. I would have never done a 4th lap if it hadn’t been for my friends, and strangers who are now friends, pushing me along the way. Because of them I made my goal. This is one of the many reasons I love this sport. We are a small family. You don’t even have to know each other personally, but as we see each other on the course a bond is formed that is unbreakable. Will I do BFX again? Hell yes I will, and each time I will get better and better…. One day I’m determined to make it 5 laps!
Tips and Suggestions:
1) Arrive as early as you can, at least 2 hours before your wave to accommodate for traffic, lines, and setting up your coolers and food supply to get you through the day.
2) If you want any merchandise or race freebies get them before you start. When you finish most everything will be shut down or people will be packing up and you may miss out on something you liked.
|Lenny and Larry's Cookies Are YUMMY|
4) Bring outside food your stomach will tolerate between laps. Like I mentioned above I enjoy the Lenny and Larry’s cookies, but I had pre-made peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, chips, and Coke to sip on.
5) Thank you to Josh Andrews from Team Blacksheep who taught us Campbell’s chicken soup straight from the can was the new “mustard” for endurance races. Bring a few of those. My husband started to cramp up BAD after his second lap and Josh gave him a can of soup and told him to drink. Within in minutes his cramps had subsided. This is because of the salt content in those little can’s is high and since it is soup, the absorption rate is crazy! What’s $3.00 for 3 cans to keep in your bag for emergencies right?
6) Camel back or hydration belt. I chose not to run with it on the first 3 laps because volunteers were still out at the aide stations service electrolytes and water…but by lap 4 volunteers are scarce, and nutrition stations may or may not have water.
7) Dress for the weather and comfort. Preferably clothes that dry out quick, and shoes that don’t give you blisters. Now is not the time to be concerned about what you look like. Trust me, no one cares at mile 15 if your stomach is protruding and you look like a marshmallow man or woman stuck in a Michelin tire from all the salt intake and your body swelling…only you do when you look back on race pictures… just remember… you survived and did a race that the normal population wouldn’t even dream about. Be proud of your accomplishment.
8) Find someone to hug at the finish line… it really does make everything better!
9) Enjoy your race and as Coach Dewayne says “Handle YOUR Business!”
To try some Lenny and Larry’s cookies check out the website at: https://www.lennylarry.com/a/14680
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