Warrior Girl Dashing… Race Day

Warrior Girl on Race Day... a whole lot cleaner than when I finished

Lyric of the Day (Raise Your Glass, Pink): 

So raise your glass if you are wrong
In all the right ways
All my underdogs, we will never be, never be
Anything but loud
And nitty gritty dirty little freaks
Won’t you come on, and come on, and
Raise your glass
Just come on and come and
Raise Your Glass!

The Day of the Warrior Dash has come and gone. The race itself was secondary to the surrounding commotion. Guests arriving and settling in, catching up on news and eating healthy pre-race fare. The afternoon was given over to preparation with consideration given to the right apparel (stuff that could be disposed of, if necessary), the position of the race number (front or back, and what if I just wear my bra top, then what?) and the application of warrior markings. We dipped into black tempra paint and my older daughters cheerleading make-up (glued-on sparkles that refuse to budge in the face of tears, sweat or faceplants).  We painted Ws, stripes and messages of warning: I am a Warrior God. Once we were in our full warrior regalia, photos were taken and we piled into the van for the long drive out to Horseshoe. 

The venue was crowded with people in all manner of costume: a team of eight in kilts, several versions of warrior from Viking to medieval to Jedi, military types in camoflauge, combat boots and helmets. Spiderman was in attendance as well as an enthusiast in a full ape suit, in 28 degree weather no less. I can`t imagine how the sun-blasted ski hill must have felt while in encased in black fur. It was brutal enough for those of us who were half-naked in shorts and bra tops.

In the end, I was downed by a stitch, for Pete`s sakes. Well, not downed, but certainly slowed-down in my pace. Rookie mistake.  At my age, I really ought to know better.  The race was fun, nonetheless, an endless up-and-down through the trees, slogging through thigh-deep mud then slip-slopping up a dirt trail thereafter. Belly-crawling under a man-made trench, spidering our way across horizontally cargo nets then through a life-sized cat`s cradle of tangled rope. Hills and more hills with a blessed water station at the half-way point atop the longest climb of all. We high-stepped through dozens of tires then clambered across old wrecks of cars.  Finally we were blessed with a downhill, albeit it came with a make-shift water slide that proved somewhat vicious.

“Make sure that you go down on your butt and not on your stomach,” an earlier finisher warned us. “You’ll get scratched up otherwise.” 

He wasn’t kidding.  I started out sitting down, but unable to control my body during the slippery descent, I ended up toppling over and flailing about on my side. I hit a rock sticking up through the plastic and was scratched the length of my arm, bruised on my hip and cut quite badly on my left-hand. It rather looks like I was bitten by a buck-toothed vampire. Thank goodness it wasn`t my wrist. 

I gathered my scraped self up off the ground and jogged down to the final obstacles: a twenty-foot cargo net climb, two dare-devil leaps over foot-high flames (fake fire logs if I`m not mistaken, but toasty all the same) and a final crawl through twenty feet of mud and under a series of low-slung chains to the finish line.  With relief, I dashed the last few yards over the finish line and was handed the coveted Warrior Dash medal. Only ten thousand others were handed out that day.  My husband met me with a muddy smile and a cup of water.

“Way to go, boss,” he said. “You did it.”  I certainly did, and I had the warrior scars and mud-sodden shoes to prove it.

After a thorough hosing off by volunteer firefighters, and a quick trip to the first aid tent for antiseptic, we hustled our way to the van to await the rest of the team. I was shivering by now.

“Who the heck thought we could be cold after that,” I muttered through chattering teeth. It was almost 30 degrees outside.  This is the one down-side to having low body fat.  I have never been so grateful for a towel and a granola bar.

The day finished as it had begun, with a crowd of hungry warriors gathered to feast around a table, a little worse for the wear, this time joined by our loyal spectators and a dog no less.  War stories were told, injuries compared and much laughter shared.  And everyone agreed: same time next year.

Apparently, Warrior Girl is going to keep on dashing.

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