Hey guys, so I had a new experience this past weekend running in the competitive wave for the Fort Campbell Spartan Sprint. I have always ran in the elite heat for Spartan races in the past, but thought I would give the competitive heat a try this time since it became an option this year. There are not much differences between the two waves- the competitive just allows you to use discount codes, etc. where the elite wave does not accept many discount codes. Both waves are filmed so that you get disqualified if you do not abide by the rules.
Thought #1- I like that the elite heats are separated by gender (yes I am saying this as a feminist, just hear me out). Most of us as athletes are always competing against those in our own gender category. They still tally up the overall results where you can see where you “chicked” all the guys in the end with the timing chip, if you are extremely fast. I love the feeling of being in the starting corral with all of these strong, fierce, badass women right before the race. In the competitive wave I had guys that I knew were going to be slow try to keep getting in front of me, as if I was not going to beat them. That just gave me incentive to run harder and smile when they miserably looked at me when I passed them up!
Thought #2- I did place third OVERALL (!!!!) female for the competitive wave, but I still felt like I was missing something. Even though I have never had an overall podium at a Spartan event, I have placed in my age group, which shows me that with more training I could be in the top percentile of these events. Even though I know I may not place in age group, as in the Asheville race, I feel accomplished that I am out there with extremely difficult competition and keeping up. It forces me to push my limits so that I can grow as an athlete. In the competitive wave, there were some girls that were “complaining” about the height of the walls and the difficulty of the course. You never hear whining and complaining in the elite heat! It is just a different mind set between the two options.
Thought #3- Even though I may say to myself that I am just going to show up and run “for fun”, I know deep down that I am competitive. So back to thought 2, I want to push my self in every way possible so that I can get better and start placing. That being said, I am totally looking to just buy an annual race pass next year so I can get better in this rapidly growing sport!