Rugged Maniac – Atlanta 2015

Rugged Maniac - Team ORM

I arrived at Matt’s house at 8 am where of course there were still fifteen things to do before we left. Matt’s wife, Stacie had some delicious sausage and eggs for us, River, the two year old, was happy as could be eating his eggs, and Jaxson, Matt’s 6 year old was complaining, rolling around on the couch per usual. We had to go to CVS to get paper towels for the hashbrowns that nobody has eaten because we don’t have plates. Should have gotten plates. Oh well, at least we were on our way.

During some legal discussion on the road, Matt was trying to set the GPS for the fastest route. He explained it always takes him the wrong way and he was bound to go the right way. Guess what? It took the same way he always goes. Imagine that. (For those that want to know for next time, it’s Exit 82 of I-20.)

I manned the ORM tent while Matt, Peter, and Chrissy started the first heat at 10 am. Yep, this is the race for us slackers, or those who love their sleep. I got a few emails for the email list and unsuccessfully tried to get people to do burpees to get free Athletics8 compression athletic gear. Everyone postponed their burpees until after their race.

I was ready to run as soon as Matt, Peter, and Chrissy got back. I ran to the starting line just in time for the 11 am wave. I have no patience during these races. I should probably always be in the first wave. I would rather walk on hot coals than stand in line. It might be rude but I always pushed through people to get ahead. This is a race though. If you’re going to walk stay to the right and get out of the way or be prepared to get pushed around a little. I ran pretty hard the first few hundred meters to the first obstacle, the barricades.

Rugged Maniac Obstacle Rings

*Photo courtesy Melissa Montoya

I was already feeling pretty winded. I slowed down and tried to pace myself. I made it to Jacob’s ladder next. I love climbing and this race has multiple climbing obstacles which I love. Tipping point was next. I had never done this one. It was walking or running up a seesaw and going down. It felt a little strange but was fun nonetheless. The next obstacles involved lots of mud and water. Such a relief since it was super hot and humid out there today. I’m still sweating writing this outside the ORM tent. I really enjoyed the balance beams, the soft mud of the barbwire army crawls, and the muddy hill climbs. The toughest obstacles for me were the trenches obstacle, which was a set of about 12 six foot deep by six foot wide trenches one after another. They were farther apart than it seemed. The rings were tough also. This is the only obstacle I didn’t finish. I lost momentum and couldn’t move but hitting the water was a very nice relief. Lastly, my favorite obstacle, the warped wall. It was my first time and didn’t want anyone to help me up. I waved the guys at the top off so I could do it myself but they seemed not to understand my sign so I yelled don’t touch me when I got to the top. One guy exclaimed, “Obviously you don’t need our help.” Precisely, good sir. Finally, the victory slide felt so good.

The medal, oranges, banana and water hit the spot. PowerIce saved the day with their electrolyte ice pops. So good!

The race was fantastic. All of the staff and volunteers were great. The MC Aaron Smalls was amazing. He sounded like Aziz Anasari. I liked the obstacles here at Rugged Maniac much better than Udder Mudder, but Udder Mudder had free ice cream and yogurt. And Udder Mudder was backwoods which I liked.

Rugged Maniac Pies

*I was so excited about a pie eating contest, I forgot to move my thumb out of the way.

Seems like all of the races are at Conyers Horse Park which can be good and bad. Familiarity but no change in environment/terrain/course. The DJ and big stage were great. Lots of good music, dancing, a pull up contest, and finally a pie eating contest!

Whew, I’m sunburnt and exhausted.

See y’all next week at the Asheville Spartan Super!

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Clayton Griffith

One day, Clayton made the mistake of getting too close to ORM co-founder Matt Davis. Now, most weekends, he is stuck with Matt running on a trail, on some train tracks, or at obstacle races. He also been forced to take on additional duties, such as writing for ORM, manning the ORM tent, and watching Matt's kids, all against his will.