The Agri-Fit Challenge is my favorite race. I look forward to it all year. It's also the hardest race I've ever done - harder than my marathon or triathlons - and this year was the hardest of all!
It's a 5K interspersed with farming-based challenges. The obstacles change every year. Though I don't have many pictures due to rain and distance, this year we had to:
- Climb over round bales
I learned from the first year that I have to wedge my foot in between the bales.
- Run through a mucky pond
I actually fell and so I crawled through part of it.
- Mud run and crawl under ropes
I hit an electric fence with my spine last week. Good practice.
- Carry a 50-lb bag of soybean seed around cones.
I started on my shoulder and moved it to my hip - like carrying a big kid!
- Pull a tire over and back a painted line
This made me laugh, because last night the boys and I were trying to move a big tire and couldn't ... but if it had a rope attached to it like here? Better.
- Run up a steep muddy hill
- Climb up and down a wall with boards nailed to it
- Run through drain pipes
- Run over small square bales
- Scale some black, wet crates
- Climb up, through, and down a grain truck filled with sugar beets
I slipped and a volunteer yelled 'DON'T FALL OUT!' I think I scared him. Also, I would have probably fallen on him.
- Jump over a fire
You could go around, but ... seemed more fun to jump over it.
- Slip on the slip and slide right before the finish!
The run through the narrow path in the woods is actually what makes it the hardest. This year it was super slippery, and it's so incredibly twisty that I am always afraid that I've gone off the path and will just be running for miles. You're usually alone, and that intensifies the feeling!
And what made this year even more fun was ... they had a kids race! My boys have loved watching me in this race in past years and were so excited to do it. They had a shorter run, but did a lot of the same obstacles - climbing round bales, tires, drain pipes, steep muddy hill, grain truck, fire, slip and slide ... it was SO fun watching them and they loved it! Since they do live on a farm, there were also a lot of activities that are very familiar to them.
Like Ty yesterday on the farm ...
and Ty today:
And a normal day:
And at the race:
We all had chocolate milk afterward. (Big surprise. It's my favorite post-race drink and I'm sad when any race doesn't have it, so I just go home and drink my own. This race was stocked! Thanks, Cathy McCune!)
My parents came to cheer us on in the rain - and thanks to them for the pictures. Kris had planned long ago to go to the MSU vs. Notre Dame game - so he was having a blast, too!
Thank you so much to Gratiot Area Chamber of Commerce and all of the volunteers and organizers for the most fun, hardest, and farmer-friendly race around! See you next year! We'll be in daily training ...
Want to know more? You can like the page on Facebook, follow me on Twitter@carlashelley, or sign up to get the blog by good old, old-fashioned email - the form is on the right side of the page.