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Mens Health Urbanathlon Sydney 2012 Apr 22

I entered into this as part of the team from my gym, wasn’t sure if I could do it, but what the hell. Nothing ventured nothing gained!

The guys at the gym held weekly training sessions for it, but unfortunately due to holidays and then the house settling I just didn’t have time to get to them, so the nervousness was going up. Got even higher as while i was still getting in three training sessions a week during the house move i had stopped running as just not enough time.

Had to be up by 5:30am to get in there in time to register, pick up my kit and be in the chute. Got really nervous on the train and almost bailed as my confidence dropped, then I started to think that I’ve been faced with some really big and serious challenges in the last 5 years and gotten through them all successfully so “what the feck” was I getting worried about with this. If I come in last, but finish then I’ve still won. That pushed all the doubt out the window.

After that it was just turn up and get processed, bib, timer, drop bag and wait my waves turn. I was in the third batch of my wave and just started at my own pace. Was at the back and fairly much stayed there in that batch, then had the next wave who left a minute behind us start passing. Just pushed on, and after everything warmed up the pace picked up to probably my normal beach pace of about 1Km in 6 mins.

The first obstacle challenge was the stairs. Now after months of doing the stairs outside the gym these were actually a doddle and I was really happy at the top when people were suffering abit already! Next was 10kg sandbag carry for 500 metres around the observatory. Again after doing the training bag which is 15kgs at the gym up the stairs, running around a relatively flat circuit with it was also good. Oh sorry the first challenge was actually the tire run, which was so simple (possible my photo might appear on this one as I was almost walzing it to get into the tyres!). The 4th challenge was tarzan swing and the one I was dreading.

Think most people has issues with this one as the bars were so slippery. They appeared to let you get as far as you could then move on. Jog on. The cargo next climb over a container was probably the only one they didn’t plan well. It was great, but I suspect next year they will have two of them to allow people to move over it quickly without have to stop and wait in batches. A nice thing at this point was that I had about 5 mins wait and recovered completely when it was my time to go up. Used the brain here and went for an edge position so had better tension!!

Jog on up via Darling harbour, then the up and under challenge. This was really interesting as all the guys were doing macho jump swings over (very impressive to watch), i was going for minimizing effort so was doing more of a sit and swing over. The interesting bit was being normal hight but with good flexibility i was able to do the unders in a smooth easy motion while the jump guys couldn’t so a the end of it we all ended up equal!!

Jog on, at it was 7km mark, knew then i could complete this as was feeling good. The crawl under netting was really fun and jog on. More stairs, but was still good. The 100 metre sprint i left to the really fit people, i had my pace going so no drama there.

Next it was all over barriers, again used my sit and swing technique. a guy who had great technique came from behind me, but oddly i passed him latter as he was buggered from it. I then thought that was the last challenge so i was set. The last one stumped me.

It was a like a skateboard curved ram that you had to run up and then grap the top and pull yourself over. I almost baulked as alot of people were having issues. (the guys at the top were helping the girls). but i gave it a go, just hit it high speed then grabbed. What surprised and thrilled me was that all the work the boys have been doing on my upper body strength just swung into action and I was easily able to pull myself up and over. No one really noticed my yelp of surprise that i had done it first time!!!

The steep ramp down was easy, then it was just jog on to the finish line, could possibly have picked up the pace, but just jogged on and crossed the finish line!!!

One very happy chappy for doing it! I not only started it but finished it and the only rest breaks were one stop for traffic and a wait for the rope climb, that personally to me is also a great result. After grabby some gaterade to re-hydrate it was wait for bag pickup. Another little surprise was that my recover was so quick! I had also noticed along the way that there were alot of people passing me, but were gasping for air, while my pace was just keep going. I felt like i could do it again if needed (with dry socks).

It was a awesome feeling to have done it. I’ve run 10km before on the beach, but not in shoes or mixed terrain so this was a great change and result.

I really thank my main personal trainer Trent for all the work he has done in getting me to this shape, (my other trainer is Greg who picks up sessions when Trent is away), both these guys are awesome and have really changed my life and body. They both said I would have no problem doing this challenge. As this is my first they definately had the inside edge on what is required to complete something like this and so glad the faith they had in me to do it has been well placed.

Feel on top of the world at the moment!

Category: fitness, Health
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