Friday, July 1, 2011

Race Review: Big Sur Mud Run


Cotton finisher's shirt and super cool clay medal with leather cord

Of all the races I have done, to date, this was definitely one of my favorites.  There are four Big Sur Marathon Events held yearly.  The Big Sur International Marathon (look for this review come April!), Big Sur Half Marathon, Just Run, and Big Sur’s Mud Run.  There is also the Big Sur River Run but I don’t think it is considered part of the clay medal group.  Anyway, we signed up for this race thinking we would shake things up a bit and this did not disappoint!

Weather: C
This, officially, was the first race I ran while it was raining.  Ok, sprinkling, but still! I guess it was a good thing because, as the name suggests, we wouldn’t have stayed dry for long anyway! So race morning was cloudy and damp with an average temp around 60 degrees.

Organization: A
Just like Virginia Beach’s Live, Love, Run! Challenge, Big Sur is the race master on this coast.  If you are lucky enough to be able to participate in a Big Sur Event you are in for a good time.  For this race the young Marines and soldiers from Defense Language Institute volunteer their time and come out to wreak havoc all along the course! When I say wreak havoc I mean that in a really fun way! Being a former Marine and being married to an active duty Marine made this all the more fun for the two of us! Ahhhh…memories!!

Course: A
This is an approximate five mile loop that runs around old Fort Ord.  It is partially on the road and partially trails.  This course was somewhat tough so be prepared for some hills (especially if it is raining) it can get pretty slick! Also the fun of a mud run is the obstacles right? You get to climb over road barriers into nice deep puddles of water, climb over five foot walls (don’t worry, if you need a hand there are holes cut out to help give you a boost), and of course four lovely mud pits! Don’t forget about the little exercise stations that the Marines control along the way!

Medal: A
The Big Sur events are famous for awarding clay medals.  They are unique to the Big Sur events and they all look alike but have the different names printed on them.  They also are strung on a cord instead of the traditional ribbon.


Schwag: B
A neat thing about some of the races in California (and other places I’m sure) is that they mail out the bibs and timing chips.  This erases the need for an expo so there is very little swag.  We got our medal at the end and then picked out our cotton t-shirts.

Post-Race: NA
For this race there is an individual runner’s event that starts at 8am and a team runner’s event that starts at 10am.  After each race awards are given and that is pretty much it.  If you are an individual you can stick around and watch the teams and if you are part of a team just enjoy your shower at the end and head home! (PS…if you are a team, feel free to dress up and really get into it…the crazier the better!)

Our Performance: A
This was so much fun that it didn’t even feel like a tough little run! This was our first trail race and it was tough but also very enjoyable! With all the obstacles and exercise stations we still managed to come in at a descent 58:01!

Overall Grade: A+
If you want to do something different but have always been afraid to try one of these “crazier” races, this is the race to sign up for! I’ll be honest and say that I was a little nervous about the obstacles but once you get out there and realize everyone is just there to have a good time the nerves will settle and be replaced by a big smile! Also, wear old shoes!!! We wore our Vibram five fingers because I thought they would stay on our feet better through the mud.  People get their shoes sucked of in the mud so make sure you lace up and double knot!!


For more info, or to register, go to: http://www.bigsurmudrun.org/


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