Friday, June 21, 2013

Tuxedo NY Spartan Sprint
June 1st, 2nd, 8th 2013
(Part II)

WOW! June has surely started with a BANG! Two weekends have been all about unleashing my inner Spartan and welcoming a few new Spartans towards GLORY! At Tuxedo Ridge Ski Center, where all Spartans-To-Be gathered up to race the Spartan course filled with challenging hills and obstacles. The Sun was beaming strong and the mud was everywhere. It was perfect!

The first weekend was great even with a sprained ankle from the day before, on Sunday June 2nd I got my group to the finish line. After the first weekend I had until Saturday June 8th to recover, when I would be racing the Elite Heat for the first time at 8:00AM. Throughout the week I continued light training while I took care of my ankle, wrapped it, and went to a natural healer. Saturday came and although my ankle wasn’t 100% yet, I wrapped it up tight and was confident it was good enough to compete. Well it was 8:00AM, we took off, and 3 minutes into the race I twisted the sprained ankle twice getting through water hoses. Once again my mental strength, will power, perseverance were all going to be tested! “I must complete my first elite race, I must not give up!” I told myself.
Limping my way through the course I finished within 1hr 37min. Not my best time, but I was content I did not allow the pain of an ankle sprain stop me from enjoying the course. Needless to say, as soon as I finished the race I paid a visit to the medical station. There I had the honor of meeting the first place winner of that elite heat, Yury Shtankov, who completed the race within an astonishing 45min. We got to chat for a bit and exchanged our Spartan Race experiences while we both rested our sprained ankles. “HAHAHA” Turns out towards the end of the race Yury had twisted and sprained he’s ankle as well. I am glad he showed the Spartan attitude, and pushed towards the finish line to earn 1st place.

However, it was still not over for me yet. I still had one more group to lead during the 1:30PM heat. I only had a couple hours to rest. Like a true Spartan I prepared myself mentally to take on this course once again. With a very excited group of Spartans, they gave me the energy I needed. My trainees depended on my guidance and there was no way I was going to let them down.  I limped once again throughout the course, giving them that push if they needed, to push through each obstacle and pushing myself each step of the way as well.  We all finished and it was a great feeling! Not only did I push though the pain of my sprained ankle, but I guided my group successfully like I set out to do! Congrats to all my trainees and all Spartans who pushed through and conquered the Spartan weekends.  You have all truly earned your medals! On to the next races! Aroo!


Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Tuxedo NY Spartan Sprint 
June 1st, 2nd, 8th 2013 
(Part I)

It has been a Spartan filled weekend followed by a second serving. Crawling, jumping, climbing, pulling, and pushing onward to the finish line. Many Spartans were tested mentally, physically, and even emotionally. As a Spartan Group X Coach and Spartan Street Team member it is both an honor and a privilege to be a part of the Spartan Race mission of making better humans. In Tuxedo NY I was able to witness minds and bodies change from what they believed was personally possible to what a human being is truly capable of.

As many didn't know up until Saturday June 8th, I had twisted and sprained my ankle working the muddy walls helping Spartan after Spartan over the obstacle on Saturday June 1st (not even my wife knew). I knew I was going to pay with pain for it later, but I had hoped later then the 8th, I was wrong. After working the walls for 8 - 9 hours followed by doing a course sweep (another 3 ½ hours) my ankle had swelled up slightly and every step I took was a sharp stab. I was already set to take a group through the grueling course the following day, Sunday June 2nd, so I went home, ate, massaged it, put on an ankle support, took aspirin and off to bed for some rest. Come that Sunday morning I had told myself to forget the pain and SPARTAN THE @#%$ UP! The one quote from the movie 300 kept repeating in my head,

“Spartans never retreat! Spartans never surrender! No retreat, no surrender. That is Spartan law.”

Now let’s give you a quick scenario before I continue my double Spartan weekend. If you were in a car accident that landed you and your loved ones off the road down a steep 3 mile down hill with no phone or visibility to others and it looks like everyone has sustained serious to fatal injuries, would you, injured, but capable of moving, race to the top of that hill to seek help? Well the answer depends on how ready and confident of a person you are, and how determined you are to save your family.

I was confident in my capabilities and knew that the group was going to take their time going through the hilly 4.5 miles, 25 obstacles course and I was determined to get them to the finish line. As long as I remained cautious in my steps I would be fine. So on we went using will power, strength, determination, and team work. We all got through it and made it to the finish line to collect our well earned shields. Everyone in the group was so motivated and determined; I was watching the transformation right before me. Their will-power, perseverance, stamina and determination were all tested and were all conquered! I’m so proud of them!
Brian Sansanelli, Marcela Sansanelli, ME, Barbara Rodriguez, Jason Gerdes, Sean Mullahey

Spartan Group X Coach
Jonathan ARAGON