Congrats to all those who Survived the Mens Health Urbanathalon earlier this morning.
It was an early start for a Sunday morning, and the weather was perfect! Arriving later than I had planned, I joined the masses before 7am queuing up with the intent of getting into the the first wave. Waiting patiently and squeezing through landed me in the 3rd wave! As we were packed into the starting grids I realised that we still had 30minutes before the starting time. With good company (Wyman Yap) and some stretching /warm ups, time passed, and the race begun.
Deciding to take this one easy and enjoy the run, we still took off at a great pace, before returning to a comfortable cadence. Soon after the 1 km mark, we hurled ourselves over the LAB Series freight container, and made our way to the 8 flights of stairs (up and down) at the floating platform. Taking the steps in stride, it was not really tiring, although I’m sure the many people walking would disagree with me!
Running further took us to the next obstacle, hurdling 1.3meter beams. Getting air over these beams, parkour style, was awesome. Obstacle followed quickly, commanding us to climb up and down a rope net (army nets). The cool thing about this was the truck we were climbing over had a container full of muddy water, although I didn’t see anyone falling through to take a swim.
After some uphill climbs at Fort Canning, we arrived to the sandbag obstacle. I saw one young girl standing there helplessly, probably thinking “how do I even lift this wet 20kg bag onto my shoulder?” So I hoisted it up and onto her shoulder, and off she went. This was a potentially difficult task, slowing many participants to a struggling walk… luckily the distance was manageable!
The one next obstacle followed soon after, and was the one I was looking forward to. Incline monkey-bars! Too bad the distance was so short, it was over before I knew it. Still fun, as they had the white chalk ready for us, giving us really good grip!
Obstacle 7 was a mind map, forcing us to cross the 15m stretch by jumping from object to object. Simple, easy, as long as you can aim your landings correctly! In hindsight, I should have had my name card handy, for anyone who missed the landing, and sprained their ankle! Thankfully as I passed, no one did!
I was also anticipating the next obstacle, the lateral shift/bars. Surprisingly, it was quite easy to maneuver across the beams, with not much effort, although speaking to some people after the race, I think technique was the biggest factor in making it easy (or hard!)
The final stretch of the run landed us at the best obstacle by far! No 9: “Down & Dirty”… the muddy ICE bath! It was a much welcomed feeling, to jump into a container waist deep of ice! And the feeling afterwards, was brilliant! I should have stayed in there longer! After turning the legs on again, you can run even faster! The 250m sprint to the finish was a breeze, and concluded a great way to start a Sunday!
If you have not signed up for an event like this, I’d recommend it, for all fitness levels (although training and some basic fitness will ensure a smoother, safer event). For some, the hardest challenge is actually completing the 14km run!
So Post run, everyone should rest, stretch more, rehydrate, and fuel up (although i’m pretty sure there’s plenty of feasting going on!) If you have sprained your wrist, ankle or pulled a muscle, do get it checked out if it persists more than a couple days, as most post-exercise soreness should be resolved. Further pain may indicate an injury, and if addressed early, will recover and not affect future performance and activity.
Be well, and enjoy your Sunday!