Tag Archives: Race Reviews

Muddy Buddy (race review)

23 Jul

Saturday, WAY too early in the morning (we’re talking before 5 a.m.) Jas and I set off for the Muddy Buddy. We had coffee in hand, bike in tow, and Princess dresses on. Wait, what? Yup, you read that right, we went thru with the princess dress idea for the race!

(That’s me in yellow and Jas in pink. The dragon is the one breathing fire!)

The costume contest was set for 6:30, as far as we knew, and I wanted to get my gear checked before we had to show off our matching dresses and dragon bike. Not to mention we still had to attach the head and tail to the bike! Parking was a breeze and well organized, and we got around to attaching decorations to the bike and laughing about how difficult it was going to be to ride it with a tail streaming behind us. I’m not saying it was the absolute best dragon bike ever created, but I am saying my kindergarten-teacher-of-a-mother would be proud of our arts and crafts skills! You don’t grow up kindergarten and not learn valuable skills like paper mache and how to use a hot glue gun. Some strong knots with twine/string/stuff and we were set!

This is probably a good time to mention that as we were attaching our dragon, most people around us were stretching or putting their bikes together… as in bikes that were probably competitive and we wondered what exactly we’d gotten into. Having never done this race before, we weren’t sure how difficult any of the obstacles would be or how much of a competition to expect. We dressed as princesses, after all.

The sad news: we didn’t win the costume contest. The even sadder news: we weren’t even finalists.

But, we’d paid to get these dresses muddy and that was the real goal, right? So we took our turns watching the dragon (Which we named “Cassie” though we constantly referred to it as “He”) and going to the bathroom, because really having to go to the bathroom with no option to do so in sight during the race is just plain obnoxious. Strangely enough, we lost track of each other once we’d split up. We each thought the other had lined up at the start because we hadn’t looked at wave info before and started getting worried that the other would take off without us! This meant a lot of asking strangers things like “Have you seen a girl in a dress exactly like mine around here” and “Did a princess come take the dragon?” Eventually a girl came up to me and said “Oh! Your friend was just here! She moved your bike!” To which, I replied that no, that had been me moving the bike. But Jas was nearby and overheard me say “She’s wearing a dress that looks like mine” and we were reunited!

By the time our heat was up, we were raring to go. I was biking for the first leg, Jas was running. I wish I’d have started further up in the pack of bikers because I got stuck behind a few more leisurely paced ones and couldn’t get any speed going. After a few elevation changes (biking thru the barn was pretty fun, hoping not to crash into anyone on the way down… not so much) and plenty of turns, the path widened and I could finally get around the people directly in front of me. And about that time we hit the first obstacle. Over the obstacle and off on foot.

I’d say the most surprisingly scary obstacle for me was the inflatable cargo slide. The slide in itself wasn’t bad. That steep of a drop in a fancy dress? I nearly flew off the end of it! I was laughing with a guy I’d been running with about how poorly designed dresses were for events like this.

The crawl thru the mud pond (they call it a pit, but it was so much water I say pond) was fun, and I was happy we got to do that part together. We crossed the finish line at 1:01:11.2 and I’m pretty darn proud of that.

(Who says it isn’t lady-like to play in the mud?)

Race Review In Numbers: 

Organization: 3/5 The website offers little of the information I wanted and when Jas asked at packet pick-up the volunteers weren’t very well informed. However, once we got to the race everything went very smoothly and people were friendly and knowledgeable.

Race Support: 5/5 The volunteers along the course were lovely! They’d offer so many positive words and were all very taken by the dresses! I guess it is something you don’t see every day… 🙂

Obstacles: 3/5 They were somewhat varied. That is one of the most important things to me on an obstacle course. None of them were amazing but they were all fun. I would have liked less “Climb over this” type and more diversity, but for a race that they needed two sets of almost all the obstacles, they do a pretty darn good job.

Course: 4/5 It was very flat. There were a few steep inclines and declines but none of them were for very long. Rough terrain offered more challenge for the biking, but as I was running I caught myself thinking over and over that all I was going thru were sunny corn fields.

Difficulty: 3/5 The distance was more challenging than the obstacles in my mind. They were a nice change of pace as was alternating between biking and running, but nothing needed any amazing physical strength or prowess.

Overall Experience: 4/5 I didn’t go into this one expecting a huge physical challenge. I’d go to Spartan or Tough Mudder for that. This was very laid back and the way they divided the heats probably had a lot to do with that. We were in the middle group (I think) for females. Perfect! The atmosphere of the whole event was just to have good fun and do silly things. The fellow racers were up for some chatter along the course and everyone seemed to be all smiles.

Things I wish were different:
~If I were to do it again, I’d try to get a group of four. That way you always have a friend with you. Since that is in the name of the race, it was a bit of a bummer that along the course, we only got to see each other in passing moments.
~More diversity in the obstacles. Let me get dirtier earlier, or crawl under more, or balance on things, or cross monkey bars. Most of the obstacles were climbing over things. Also, leap fire. I always want to leap fire in obstacle races.
~More info on the website. I may be slow to find things in general on websites, but I had difficulty finding the forms to change my partner (original buddy had a job get in the way, so Jas jumped in). I even emailed them about it and sent them all the info they asked for and it was still never updated.

Goals this Race:
1. Win Costume Contest. status: not achieved
2. Not walk. status: achieved!

Interested in doing it yourself? Check out www.muddybuddy.com