First, let me start by saying that the Warrior Dash is one of my favorite events. They offer a really nice venue and the atmosphere on race day is awesome! I didn’t feel intimidated by other runners at the event, and the whole day was a lot more relaxed. I’m not saying the event was a walk in the park, but it’s very different from other OCR events.
We registered for the Warrior Dash shortly after completing the Spartan Sprint. This time it was only me, Keith, Cait and Lauren. We assumed the race would be hard if not harder than the Spartan Sprint. Luckily for us, that turned out to be false.
Warrior Dash was held in Long Pond, PA around the racetrack of Pocono Raceway. This course was only 3.1 miles compared to the five mile Spartan Sprint. The terrain was flat and partially in the woods. There were between 10-15 obstacles, all of which were not that difficult. There wasn’t much heavy lifting, just a lot of mud.
Tip: if you are looking to complete your first OCR I suggest the Warrior Dash. It’s a nice beginner race. I wish I had done this race prior to the Spartan Sprint.
Most of the obstacles involved crawling through tunnels or under barbed wire. There were also some climbing obstacles and balance beams. I considered the Warrior Dash obstacles to be more fun than challenging. Also, there were no water obstacles, unless you count the final obstacle of swimming through mud as a water obstacle.
My only complaint about the Warrior Dash was the line at one of their signature obstacles. Just so you know…Warrior Dash doesn’t time their open waves so standing in line won’t ruin your results. We probably stood in line for at least 20 minutes. Some people bypassed the obstacle because they didn’t want to wait any longer. This obstacle was a giant slide, so I wasn’t skipping it! We eventually made it through and across the finish line.
Tip: don’t skip an obstacle unless you are “serious” about your time. You can always estimate your wait time and subtract it from your final time.
Update: Warrior Dash has revamped their wave times so lines don’t occur. Thanks for listening to us!
Warrior Dash offers the most unique medals of any OCR. In 2013 they could be used as a bottle opener. Talk about convenience! I haven’t used my medal to open any bottles, but I’m sure many people have.
We estimated this race took about 45 minutes to complete. That time is with the 20 minute wait-time subtraction. We took some nice post-race photos all covered in mud. Since we got to race early, we walked around their post-race party prior to the start. The music was pretty good and they had a “longest beard contest.” I had no beard, so I passed on my entry to win.
Overall we enjoyed our first Warrior Dash experience. The course was nice, but very different than the Spartan Sprint. As I mentioned before each race has it’s own identity. That is probably what makes each one so successful.
In the next mile I’ll talk about the significance of training.