Friday, December 27, 2013

2013 - a year of accomplishments

WOW!  That pretty much sums it up.  What an incredible year for team Crazy Mudder Muckers, the world of OCR and me personally.

Let's start off with the world of OCR.  2013 saw the demise of many individual events as well as many event companies.  From cancellation after cancellation to the bilking of the registrants for several Superhero events to the folding of Hero Rush and Run For Your Lives.   2013 was a roller coaster ride for the industry that ended with the announcement of the inaugural Obstacle Course Racing World Championships.  You can read about some of these things in my other blogs; My opinion on the current state of the OCR world and My opinion on the current state of the OCR world - Part 2.  Like it or not, I predict 2014 will continue the Wild Ride so keep your legs and arms inside the vehicle at all times.

For the Crazy Mudder Muckers, I don't know the exact number but we started the year with only a couple hundred members and close 2013 with over 600 strong.  The last big event for CMM was the second installment of Mud, Guts & Glory on November 2nd where we cleaned up the podium from all sides, including largest and fastest team.  The event map that I created and maintain had around 2000 hits at the beginning of the year and closes 2013 with over 23,000.  This is clearly being used by many people and I hope it continues to help people get to more events.  I'm very proud of the Crazy Mudder Muckers and all of the other groups of OCR crazies out there and am excited to see what the future holds.  I have met many incredible people through these groups and OCR and have made many great friendships.

For me personally, 2013 was a year of many changes and adventures.  I started 2013 with my cholesterol and triglycerides at an all-time high, and that was with medication.  I completed 6 events in 2012 and certainly exercised on a regular basis but never really changed my eating habits.  Starting the first of February I completely changed my eating habits and within 8 weeks reduced my body fat by 27%, 26 to 19.  Within 12 weeks I had lowered my cholesterol and triglycerides by 30% to levels that I haven't seen since high school and I continue to maintain those levels.  My goal for 2014 is to convince the doctor that I no longer need to be on a Statin.

I have to say that, at the age of 45, I could not be more proud of myself for the personal accomplishments that 2013 brought and not without challenges.  My race goals for 2013 were to do as many different events as I possibly could, to feed the addiction.  That goal eventually turned into achieving the Spartan trifecta.  By running in as many different events as I possibly could, I was conditioning myself to be prepared for anything that any event could dish out.  By the time I had reached my Spartan Super in Virginia, I started to wonder if I could even complete the miles of terrain required for a Beast.  I had to change up my training so I would be better prepared physically for the challenges that lay ahead.  In November, I completed my first half marathon and 6 days later travelled to South Carolina to conquer the Spartan Beast and earn my trifecta.  This was a great end to an incredible year and no better way to sum up this year than having that sexy tri-colored medal hanging from my medal rack.  2013 also brought me the opportunity to help design and organize an OCR event, the Mud Gauntlet.  This was a lot of fun and I think the reviews were decent.  I look forward to what the future brings for this event.  I also started this blog in May of this year and am happy to say that it has been read over 4,760 times from people in 10 different countries.  Thank you everyone for joining me in my journey.

Something I had always hoped for since starting this crazy journey in 2012 was to inspire my sons, young men now, to exercise and try to live a healthier lifestyle.  2 things happened this year that I could not have been more proud.  In July at the Mud Ninja, my sons let me sacrifice them to the Ninja as volunteers in the pouring down rain all morning.  They were miserable but made the best of it.  When their shift was over, my youngest (14) came to me and said "I want one of those medals" to which I responded "there's only one way to get it".  He said OK and I went around with him for a second lap of the Mud Ninja.  For those of you that have been fortunate enough to experience the Mud Ninja, you know that this is one of the most difficult courses in the industry.  He completed it, after working all morning, and when he got the medal at the end the look of pride on his face was priceless.  In September at the Mud Gauntlet, my oldest son (17) had agreed to be the DJ for the event all day.  He had a lot of fun with this but when I went to look for him after the last wave had gone, he was nowhere to be found.  His friend said he went to run the course.  I later learned that he didn't even go with the last wave, he went on his own, after all waves had gone, just because he wanted to run this great course.  No words, just changed his shoes and went.  THAT's what I'm talking about!  This was a tie to his completing the Indiana Spartan Sprint with me and seeing the huge sense of accomplishment on his face afterward.  These moments are priceless and I wouldn't trade them for anything.

Following is the complete list of my racing statistics for 2013:
  • completed a total of 37 events
    • 22 Obstacle Course Races (a few were covered multiple times)
    • 11 'other' events including trail runs and my first half marathon
    • 4 virtual 5k's
    • Actually won money as part of the 2nd place team at the TQL Urban OCR
  • over 193 miles ran in all of the events (not including training runs)
  • over 3,350 miles driven to events
  • 10 states travelled
  • Following is the list of 2013 events that I completed
    • 2/17 Fight For Air Climb - Cincinnati
    • 2/23 Sand Mine Challenge - Missouri
    • 3/2 Survival Race - Columbus
    • 3/9 Gladiator Mud Run - Missouri
    • 4/27 Spartan Sprint - Indiana
    • 5/5 Amazing Race
    • 5/11 Mud-Stash 5k - competitive
    • 5/11 Mud-Stash 5k - group
    • 5/12 Morgan's Extreme Trail Run
    • 6/1 Warrior Dash - Ohio 1
    • 6/9 Military Fitness Challenge
    • 6/15 T.A.C. Force Challenge
    • 6/15 T.A.C. Force round 2
    • 6/22 Waterfront Challenge - Louisville
    • 6/29 Mud-Stash
    • 7/20 Color Me Rad
    • 7/27 Mud Ninja
    • 7/27 Mud Ninja round 2
    • 8/3 Cincy Nation Mud Run
    • 8/3 Cincy Nation Mud Run round 2
    • 8/3 Cincy Nation Mud Run round 3
    • 8/3 Cincy Nation Mud Run round 4
    • 8/10 Mudathlon - Ohio
    • 8/10 Mudathlon round 2
    • 8/10 Mudathlon round 3
    • 8/11 The Great Mason Chase
    • 8/24 Spartan Mid - Atlantic Super - Virginia
    • 8/31 Mud Guts & Glory
    • 9/7 Mud-Stash - 5k
    • 9/7 Mud-Stash - 10k
    • 9/15 Mud Gauntlet
    • 9/21 Harvest Dash
    • 9/28 Mudocalypse
    • 10/5 Springboro Rock N Run
    • 10/12 TQL Urban Obstacle Race
    • 10/26 Great Pumpkin Run - 10k with Tough Pumpkin
    • 11/2 Mud Guts & Glory
    • 11/3 Mason Half Marathon
    • 11/9 Spartan Beast - Carolina
    • 11/28 Lifetime Turkey Day Race
    • 12/7 Artic Dash
    • 12/28 Topo Trail Series #2

2014 promises to be another exciting year.  I don't plan on running as many events in 2014 but will focus on getting to specific events and maybe even a multiple trifecta.  With the announcement of the Obstacle Course Racing World Championships to be held at the home course of the Crazy Mudder Muckers, Mud, Guts & Glory, my main goal for 2014 is to qualify for and ultimately run in the first ever ORCWC.  2014 is going to be a glorious year.
Happy New Year everyone!