Born to Run… in the Mud

My entire family loves to run..except for me. Both sisters and my mother have run marathons. My cousins (boys and girls) have competed in races. Not me. When I was 13 my parents made me run a 5k. I barfed. And yelled. And cried. Definitely not one of my better moments.

Then my friend Hillary told me about how much she enjoyed running now that she had her Vibram five fingered shoes..which made for a graceful gait and produced finely shaped legs.. So I bought the shoes and have been a running fool ever since.. just those same 3 miles, except for now I feel strong and svelte after running. So strong I agreed to run in the Warrior Dash with my friend Scott and his team – 7 of us in total.

The race is about fun, rather than beating a time, which meant the ensemble would be part of the equation. I had one outfit for the race and one for afterwards and a new pair of knee high socks that spelled out BEER in large letters.

My cousin Jeff teased me. Which are you more excited about the race or the outfit? I looked at him perplexed. This was not a matter of choosing, I wanted it all.

The morning of the event I braided my hair, adding ribbons and bells. I caked on black eye makeup. later would come the war paint. As we raced to the start line, Sherry and I applied additional eye makeup and lipstick, just cuz we could.

We jogged first half mile splashing through mud puddles. The first obstacle we crawled under barbed wire, then hopped over a hurdle, crawl, hop, crawl, hop. Sherry ran ahead and lay on the ground calling “Warrior Down! Jump Over!” So we did. Another half mile later, we climbed a wall and slid down the fire pole. At the water station, I tossed water at Scott, so the volunteer tossed water at me. We stuck together as a team whether scaling wooden walls, crawling over nets, sliding down verticals walls, and dove head first down a slip n slide into the lake.  We then hauled ourselves onto long buoys, swim then over two more buoys. Due to lack of arm strength I required help, but the team was always there to offer assistance (by shoving my ass over the buoy and into the water).

We jumped over fire and sloshed through the mud toward a large gloppy sandcastle in the shape of a Viking helmet. I scrambled up the mud hat and as I reached the top, Scott grabbed my ankle, pulling me back down. I slopped mud on him and pulled him back.

We scrambled over each other until we crested the hill and arm in arm crossed the finish line. The announcer called, “Now that’s friendship for you. Unless they’re married, then someone is sleeping on the couch tonight.” We all chuckled.

We took a dip in the lake again to rinse off then fill a stein with beer and toast to our victory as the latest Warriors!.

Guess I was born to run.. in the mud.

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