Posts Tagged "race"

Incredible Athletes Compete

Dear Kid,


You read that right. Wow. Just wow.

By not watching TV last night (I’m assuming you didn’t) you missed American Ninja Warrior. And by missing this episode of ANW, you missed Wow.

Like some of the incredible athletes (incrediletes) in past seasons (read here and here and here), this episode featured someone we’ve never heard of and now will not stop talking about: Zach Gowan.

When Zach was 8 he was diagnosed with cancer and had his leg amputated. He became a professional wrestler for a while, and last night he competed on American Ninja Warrior.

Think about this for a moment—most people can’t get through the course with two legs. Zach attempted it with only one.

He made it through the first several obstacles, including the floating steps (are you kidding me???!) but his hands slipped on the third challenge.

Not completing the qualifying course isn’t relevant (I’m sure it is to him on some level); competing is. That he gets up and trains and put himself out there to try this crazy sport is amazing.

To put this in perspective, several of the Indianapolis 500 drivers competed and didn’t get as far as Zach did.

In other Wow news, Megan Martin became the first woman to qualify three years in a row. She is a rock star, and not just because she’s a professional rock climber IRL.

I don’t see the fun in crawling through freezing cold mud under barbed wire. DearKidLoveMom.comSpartan: Ultimate Team Challenge premiered last night (it was a heck of a night for non-traditional sports). The coverage left something to be desired (what did the team have to do when the log thing dropped before it was supposed to?), but I have to say I’m not sure I see the “fun” in the sport. I get that the competitors are crazy athletic, but I don’t see the fun in crawling through freezing cold mud under barbed wire. Almost as much fun as having someone step on your head make it to the top of a wall. But that’s me.

Love, Mom

Read More

Mud, Guts, and Glory. And Cold. And a Celebrity.


Dear Kid,

Last week Pi found out about the Mud, Guts, and Glory race. She felt it was too late to train for the competition, so she invited me to volunteer with her. Being the kind of Mom I am, I said yes before I found out what volunteering involved.

That is how it came to be that at extremely early in the morning o’clock I found myself sitting alone in the woods next to a pile of tires with no pen, no paper, and only 20…19…18 percent left on my phone battery. Not one of my better planned mornings.

The tire carry at Mud, Guts, and Glory 2016. Pre-race and pre-mud.

The tire carry at Mud, Guts, and Glory 2016. Pre-race and pre-mud.

I’d been assigned to the Tire Carry obstacle. Really, Pi and I had both been assigned to the Tire Carry but they were short on volunteers and moved her to the Weaver. Did I mention that one of the reasons I agreed to volunteer was to spend time with her?

There I was, by myself. At an obstacle in the middle of Stage 5 of the race. I had about half an hour until the Elite competitors began and the first one wouldn’t get to my area for an hour and a half or so. Here’s what I was thinking.

My feet are cold. Really cold. How can nature be this cold in May?

I have to find a way to entertain myself. Commune with nature. Yep, there’s nature. Still surrounded by nature. Nature doesn’t seem to be doing anything.

What do people do in nature? Try to relax. People relax in nature, right? I’m not one of those people. People paint in nature. Think about whether you’d like to paint the trees. I’m sure someone would, but not me.

15%.  Why doesn’t nature come with electrical outlets?

The race starts in 10 minutes. They won’t reach my station for more than an hour. That’s a lot of nature to contemplate.

I try harder. I look at the trees. The poison ivy climbing up the nearest one winks at me.

13 percent. 

Dear lord.

I listen to the wind in the trees. I picture a gentle breeze on a hot day. I compare that to the reality of a sub-arctic morning with a 90 mile an hour wind.

The poison ivy smirks. It doesn’t care about the cold.

Did you know that nature doesn’t come with coffee? Who invented a coffee-less nature? Coffee’s natural. There should be a Keurig around here somewhere.

Oh, great. My phone’s dead.

Then out of nowhere, colorful racers burst around the corner, running easily and enjoying the course.

Nope, that didn’t happen. Not even a little bit. I was hoping it would, but it didn’t.

I started pacing on my little platform to warm up. I felt like the polar bear at the Central Park Zoo.

Eventually, The First Runner came sliding silently down the hill.

mgg-hillSerious competitors are focused. Really, really focused. Really, really focused on competing. No small talk here. The First Runner grabbed up two tires, slung them over his shoulders and headed around the loop. At the end, he dumped the tires and off he ran. I cheered for him. He didn’t seem to need the encouragement.

Ten minutes later, runners 2 and 3 arrived. They didn’t seem to need the cheering either.

The poison ivy didn’t bother cheering. Apparently it had already computed the outcome.

Eventually Pi showed up and made the day much more entertaining. She has that effect.

Michelle Warnky of American Ninja Warrior fame was the second woman we saw. She is a rock star. (This is my crazy impressed face.)

As the day went on the course, um, deteriorated. By that I mean where there had been mud, there was MUD. Where there had been slippery, there was treacherous. Where there had been sprinters, there were walkers pulling themselves along by their mud-covered fingernails. (Still, they did more than I did, so I’m not dissing.) Where there had been silence and concentration, there was conversation and camaraderie. It was fun.

The poison ivy continued to show its superior attitude. The Keurig didn’t show up. Neither did the feeling in our toes.

Still, it was a pretty cool day.

Love, Mom


Read More

What’s a Ragnar?

Dear Kid,

(Don’t tune out—you’re actually going to like this after the first paragraph or so.)

Once upon a time, there was a Viking King named Ragnar. Like most Vikings of Legend, he was the scourge of France and England, the father of many sons who weren’t all exactly devoted to him, went around killing giant serpents, and had a big beard. He probably raped a few people too, but no one talks about that. And since he’s been dead a really long time, he is seen as “a conqueror, a wild man, a leader, fearless, and free-spirited.”

Which is why the founders of Ragnar chose to name their crazy races after him.

Ragnar is a team relay race (12 members per team) over about 200 miles. Yes, you read that right. Each runner runs three times (legs are between 3 and 8 miles of varying difficulty). The rest of the team hops into vans, drives to an exchange point or cheering point, pretends to sleep, and waits for their turn to run.

Just to be clear there is no sailing, warring, or serpent killing during the race. Beards are optional, costumes are encouraged.

Ragnar races are run in a bunch of cities, none of which are Cincinnati, so you don’t have to worry that I’ll enter.

You can stop laughing now.

Love, Mom


Read More

The Iditarod is Coming! With or Without Polar Bears

Dear Kid,

In approximately 22 days, the Iditarod will start.

Because this is a dog event, I decided to consult our resident canine.

Puppy: What do you mean they are outside for 1,000 miles for a race? That’s crazy!

The Iditarod began in 1973. During the race, teams of 16 dogs and a musher race to the finish. The race frequently involves mushing through huge blizzards, sub-zero temperatures, and crazy winds.

Puppy thinks polar bears should be in the Iditarod. DearKidLoveMom.comPuppy: Those aren’t dogs. They’re polar bears.

There are 26 or 27 checkpoints along the route (depending on which route is run). Mushers pick up planned supplies at the checkpoints and often rest there (although some prefer to sleep along the trail). There are three mandatory rests along the way. One is a 24 hour layover, one is an 8 hour layover, and then final one is an eight hour stop before the final sprint.

Puppy: See? Polar bears sleep outside. Dogs sleep on pillows.

According to the EPA, temperatures in Alaska have increased 6.3 degrees over the last 50 years (twice as fast as the national average).

This year the Iditarod route is being changed because of low snowfall.

Puppy: There’s no snow for the polar bears? Ridiculous. I’m going to take a nap.

Now you know.

Love, Mom

Read More


Can't remember to check for new posts? No prob. I'll send it to you.

Online Marketing

Blogging Fusion Blog Directory

Blogarama - The Blog Directory

Blog Directory
%d bloggers like this: