This is the fourth year of the Merrill Down and Dirty series. The LA mud run is always right near me. And yet this is the first year I’ve done it. See, it’s always on a Sunday, and I’ve always had church stuff to do. But this year I decided enough was enough, and I was going to do it.
Of course, I was worried about my knee going into it after beach league the day before. That proved to not be an issue at all, which I was very thankful for.
I’ve been to the lake where it was several times over the years, including for a couple of triathlons years and years ago. But I’ve never ventured too far from the swim lagoon. To do the 5K, I was well beyond that.
But we did start out and end by the swim lagoon. One of the first obstacles was a water pit that was getting muddy waterish thanks to the dirt runners were tracking in. Frankly, I wasn’t quite warm enough for that yet since it was a cold day. In fact, it was a cold enough day I wore a shirt for the first time in well over a year.
Anyway, there was a big hill in the course. Or you might even say two of them. And I really struggled up the hills. I couldn’t figure out why for a while, but then it hit me. My quads were sore from the beach running I’d done the day before. Yes, running is good, but the sand works muscles differently. I wasn’t sore, but I was tired.
And then there was the height obstacles. There was a giant inflatable slide. It was fun going down, but it was a pain going up. The rope wobbled some, and it freaked me out a bit, but I made it to the top.
Ironically, I felt better at the rope climb up and over a trailer. That was because we went in stages with a rope walk/crawl/roll part way up and down. If you fell, it wouldn’t be that far.
Then there was the wall to climb up and over using rock climbing type footholds. Again, I managed to make it over.
I don’t think the mile markers were at all accurate. Mile two felt way further away than mile one, and then we were done in what felt like half a mile. But, naturally, I had no way of knowing for sure.
We finished with a swim in the lake and then the final mud pit. And we got a great after picture despite the fact that my camera battery had died. My new iPhone comes through again as the person I’d asked about taking my picture had one and texted me the picture, which came through.
My roommate Spencer did it with me again. And I ran into a friend from my Sunday ultimate group and another friend after we’d finished. Normally, I only see people I came with as far as people I know.