This weekend my husband and I competed in our first urban adventure race in East Lansing/Lansing the DirtyFeat. We definitely got dirty for this one.
The dirt was mostly road grime because we traveled some serious pavement, but millions of layers of sweat also heavily contributed. Not knowing what to expect from the race we prepared the best we could. We followed the gear list, we had results from the prior year and a blog here on Team Priority Health from a fellow champion to use as resources. But we were no where near prepared for what we were about to undertake.
We arrived at 5am with our headlamps on, with only 3 hours of sleep under our belts (oops!). We got all of our gear together and followed instructions shouted in the dark while avoiding all the other teams stumbling in the early morning darkness as well. Map in hand and instructions all listened to we ran off at 6:15am not expecting to actually use all 8 hours that the race had booked. Boy were we surprised.
The first 8 checkpoints all went relatively well and then hunger and my husband’s competitiveness kicked in. Let’s just say that teamwork wasn’t happening for the next several checkpoints and I almost chucked it in. But, my husband ate a granola bar and remembered, with some reminding, that I am a foot shorter and carry a hundred pounds less muscle than he does. It was good for both of us. We traveled on nearly circumventing Lansing & East Lansing in the process. One checkpoint was notoriously hard and we kept thinking if we found it it would give us a real advantage. We couldn’t find it unfortunately and after spending lots of time looking for it we hit a major low point. We were hot, tired and hungry. The next checkpoint was almost as hard and finally finding it boosted our mentality to get us to the water section.
We hit the water saying, “Yahoo!” and commenting on how happy we were to be off of our bike seats. The water section quickly took us back down again as we canoed all the way around Lake Lansing. At one point a couple that we were running neck & neck with began to pull away. My husband took that opportunity to say, “Maybe they are trying harder.” I may have then gave him a very serious warning about making such comments when I could claim his drowning was an accident. (That was the lack of food talking, I swear!) We finally finished and headed off to the orienteering section. We did only a few deciding that we were short on time and we wanted to finish our first race. It was a good call. We got 2 more checkpoints on the way back and crossed the finish line almost 8 hours after we started.
We reveled in delicious food & beer, of course, all was forgiven between my husband & I and we loved our first adventure race! A long conversation commenced about all the things we would do differently and how we could win the next race. Actually we were a great team besides the few rocky points. When we finished we were top score. We ended up in about 3rd we believe, but I think that is pretty amazing for not even knowing what we were doing. Every challenge only makes us a stronger couple. He pushes me, I temper him and we have so much fun. Looking forward to finding our next adventure!!