by Kaila Chaliotis, staff writer
Obstacle races are becoming more and more popular since they serve as a fun alternative to a 5K road race in countries such as the UK, the USA, and Australia. They can take 30 minutes to 4 days to finish. They are a fun and an amazing way to enjoy your environment, breath lots of oxygen and spend time with others. At the same time you get the benefits of exercising while having fun. Sounds great doesn’t it? Work out and have fun all at once.
Today these races have different themes which make them more appealing to those who love outside sports and exercises. They can combine climbing over walls, carrying heavy objects, traversing bodies of water, crawling under barbed wire and jumping through fire. Some of these obstacles are similar to the ones use in military training.
These obstacles test your endurance, strength, speed and your skills and grace in your physical movements and mental cleverness while exercising all your body and mind. They also vary in distance and challenge level by combining trail running, road running and cross country running.
Some of the most famous theme obstacle races are:
- Spartan Race which is the global leader in racing since 2005. They are popular in the US, UK, Mexico and Slovakia. It is a 4-6 mile race with 15 obstacles or more. There is a combination of fire, mud, barbed wire and a few curve balls to keep you alert.
- Foam Fest in the USA which has a distance of 5K and the obstacles include aqua lily pads, a slip n slide, mud, foam and inflatable obstacles. There is a festival after the race where you can spend time with your family since they offer several activities such as foam pit, pull up bar, limbo contests and also a bounce house for kids!
- Devil Dash in the US which is a 5K race. Here racers start in the “Purgatory” and battle the seven deadly sins before entering the gates of the “Beer Garden of Eden”. In this race there is a combination of climbing over cargo nets, mud pits, running through the river, fire and hiking up steep terrain. It is an all-day event which also includes beer, cheer and live music!
- Zombie Evacuation in the UK is a 5K interactive obstacle race. In this race Zombies are after you and you are challenged by different terrain and a variety of route choices and themed obstacles intended to make you experience your favorite Zombie TV shows and Movies while slowing you down therefore making you an easy prey for your pursuer.
- Run For Your Lives in the US, a 5K race, where you become a zombie when you finish. Similar to the zombie evacuation you get to run for your life. You get to test your speed, strength and endurance.
- Superhero Scramble in the US is a 4-26 mile race with a superhero themed race. This race also includes mud, slime, wicked terrain and some of the biggest and best obstacles in the world. Similar to other challenges they offer lots of entertainment once you get to the finish line. Lots of food, beer, live music, participant shirts, finisher medal and a super HEROE stickers.
- Alpha Warrior also in the US is a 5K race that is not focused on distance; its objective is for you to be able to complete each obstacle. The obstacles vary from 30 or more, that are created with the objective of challenging every muscle of your body while testing your athletic ability, both mentally and physically.
All the themed races mentioned before are only some of the many options you have. Choose the one that is of your preference and that will challenge you in mind and body. Once you have done it, I recommend you get prepared with the following items.
- Identification card
- Cash in case there is no ATM available
- Fuel which can vary from an energy bar or a small snack to help you get to the finish line.
- Trash bag so you can take your dirty, muddy clothe and shoes home afterwards.
- Baby wipes
- Change of clothes
- Extra shoes
Now you are ready for the challenge, so go ahead have fun and get dirty!