Over the years, all-inclusive competitions, such as marathons and 5k runs have always been popular. One of the reasons that such events are so popular is the fact that anyone is allowed to participate; it’s not only for elite athletes. In recent years, the need for new ways to make race competitions unique and more exciting has ushered in the obstacle course phenomenon. Warrior Dash has become one of the most popular obstacle course races in the world. Since its inception in 2009, more than 2.5 million people have participated in the race, and its popularity is still on the rise.
When it comes to Warrior Dash, the creators have completed altered the concept of 5k races. This race attracts all types. Whether you are a beginner of an elite athlete, you have the opportunity to attack and conquer world-class obstacles. There will be mud — plenty of mud — wooded lakes and mud-caked roads. More than the medal that you will receive when you cross the finish line, you have the memory and bragging rights associated with finishing one of the most challenging races on the planet.
If you have never competed in this type of race, it may be somewhat difficult to envision. Imagine climbing walls, sprinting across balance beams, belly crawling under barbed wire and running through mudded fields — all against the clock and the competition. Much in the same way as the typical 5k or marathon, each person is competing mostly against themselves — moving at their own pace.
While the competition is a part of the allure of this event, the camaraderie and the opportunity to make new friends is also an important part of the event. After the race, everybody gets to join the after party. Because it is so different than what most people are used to, it tends to grab the attention of road races and trail runners alike. The truth is that the event took a while to catch on with some trail runners, simply because of the variance in the manner that the two events are set up. Obviously, it is much easier to train for a traditional trail run than it is to train for an obstacle course like Warrior Dash. Warrior Dash is something like the merging of a 5k with cross fit training, but with more endurance.
What is so amazing about Warrior Dash is that it draws runners from all disciplines. Where it may be easy to envision distance and mid-distance runners joining in on the fun, it is not unheard of to have short distance runners get in on the action. There is even the rare occasion in which sprinters will get involved. One thing any athlete, professional or amateur, has in common is that once the competitive juices get to flowing, all bets are off. If you are a competitor, you will find your place in this event, and that is one of the things that makes it special.
Max King, one of the most talented multi-race athletes in the world, started running in Warrior Dash events because he was too banged up to compete in a 100k event. During the period in which he was healing from his injuries, he realized that there was an event in his areas, and he figured it definitely would not be as taxing as the 100k event, so he decided to enter the race on a whim.
The Draw to Warrior Dash
When runners are asked why they are drawn to the event, the number response is that these types of races are a lot of fun. Because there are constant challenges and obstacles throughout the race, the monotony that can settle in other races never materializes. Some runners view this type of event as a cross country race with a few surprises along the way.
Another element that makes it fun is the difference in the field of competitors. There are the CrossFit crowd, the distance runner, and the generally fit crew. Each of the groups train differently as a part of their normal training regimen — making it fun to observe how each group fares. Because of the difference in training styles, different people will be stronger in some areas of the race and weaker in others. The idea is to maximize your performance in your area of strength and hold your own in your areas of weakness.
So, what does it take to be successful in this type of event? The people who are most successful in events like Warrior Dash are those who have the most balanced strengths — with a little bit of crazy infused into the mix. The most well-round athletes tend to best in the race, but keep in mind, that winning is an objective, but the fun is in simply competing and leaving all out on the course.
The number of participants in Warrior Dash continues to grow each year, primarily due to buzz created by existing participant. Just like more conventional races, the idea of challenging oneself to go all out and letting the chips fall where they may is actually quite intriguing for many. You have buddies challenging one another to compete. Couples also get in on the action
Unlike other events that are specific to a geographical location, Warrior Dash has events in multiple locations through the year, so it is likely that an event will be taking place in your area at some point. The mobile model, means that people who may not be able to travel to a distant event will have the chance to compete when the event comes to their area.
While this event invites all fitness levels, it recommended that participants train for the event, because fitness is a requirement. Additionally, the better trained you are, the less likely you will be to experience an injury. While nothing can guarantee that you will not be injured, but proper training and conditioning will definitely lower the possibility of injuring yourself.
No matter what, win or lose, competing in an event like Warrior Dash will provide a high level of personal satisfaction. It is a memory that you will be able to take with you the rest of your life.