Five race day tips for first time obstacle racers.
It can be quite daunting turning up to your first obstacle run: am I going to be last? What do I wear? What will I do with my keys (there are usually lockers)? What if I rip my shorts? Well, even if there is a teeny risk you may rip your shorts, we can pretty much guarantee you won’t be last (unless you’re in the last wave and walk.the whole way…).
Everyone has a first time and here are some tips to ensure you sail through your first time to the finish line like a seasoned pro.
1. Wear clothes that don’t soak up water
Better still, wear as little as possible! You will get wet and muddy and the last thing you want is to be carting an extra 10kg of soggy clothes around with you. So baggy sweat pants, oversized sweatshirts or any type of cotton are a recipe for making life unnecessarily hard. And if you are wearing loose fitting joggers or shorts, chances are the mud will weigh them down and you will lose them. Oops.
Wear lightweight water repellant materials, wicking or fast drying material and, if there is a lot of crawling, you may want to wear leggings to protect your knees. Don’t be tempted by cotton – it holds the wet and you will get cold.
2. Footwear is everything
You don’t have to spend a fortune buying the latest fell shoes. Especially if there is a risk you could lose one in a muddy pit. But grippy shoes make ALL the difference on the muddy banks. It’s amazing how a little bit of grip can turn you from Bambi on Ice to a agile mountain goat!
Loads of people attending the Fitness Success Obstacle Gym have been sporting some really grippy Karrimor trail shoes from Sports Direct that start from around £18.
3. (Hair)Style is important
Not in a vain “I’m ready for my action photo-way” but practically. You might think keeping your hair high up keeps it out of the way girls AND boys. No it doesn’t. You will get stuck in the cargo net like a fly in a web. Or worse still, in the barbed wired. And that’s just embarrassing. Plaited pig tails keep your hair tangle free and make washing the mud out so much easier.
4. Bring plastic bags…lots of them
Not only to stuff your muddy clothes in post event, but also to protect your car seats! Mud will get everywhere. Deal with it! But at least if you surround yourself in bin bags you can minimise the post run cleanse. And keep your clean clothes in plastic bags to avoid cross contamination.
Alternatively, you could just relax and enjoy the mud and all its consequences!
5. Bring warm clothes and a towel
So, you’ve finished, it’s sunny, you’re enjoying the post run pint and cheering on the everyone at the finish line. But remember the ‘cooling power of evaporation’ theory from science class? Well, you will get chilly…which kinda takes the edge off a good day.
That said, there are plenty of other tips to get you through. Share the knowledge and let us know what else you wish you’d known!
Oral and team.