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Mud run was fun, but no walk in park

Participants crawl through the mud pit at The

Participants crawl through the mud pit at The Survival Race. (May 4, 2013) Credit: Hank Winnicki

It wasn't the mud or the obstacles or the 5-kilometer distance that bothered me. It was the hills. My goodness, those hills.

I ran in my first mud run at The Survival Race in Riverhead over the weekend. It was fun and filthy and fantastic. But I must confess it was tougher than I thought it would be. I like my 5K runs flat and fast. Running uphill is unpleasant. It's grueling. It makes me whiny.

The obstacles were a blast. There were walls to climb, tubes through which to slither, stuff to crawl under and jump over. There were short, steep hills that were tricky going down and slippery going up. But there was one monster of a hill waiting for you shortly after the beach crawl obstacle. This hill was steep and stern. It was a tough slog up the hill, but at the summit was a well-placed water station. From there, the terrain flattened out and all that was left were a few walls and a mud pit.

The race is broken into waves of 300 runners going every 30 minutes. Still, it was crowded in the beginning and the only way to get past slower runners was to dart and dash around them. That can be a bit dangerous since you’re running through the woods. I elected to pace myself and wait for things to open up, which they eventually did.

I finished the race in just over 40 minutes. I’m fine with that. It was my first mud run and I wasn’t all too concerned about time. My goal was to not skip any obstacles or avoid any mud pits. I also planned on not walking at any point, but that plan knew not of those humbling hills.

Some other mud runs coming up on Long Island:

Saturday, May 25 -- L.I. Adventure Race in Calverton
Saturday, Aug. 10 – L.I. Adventure Race in Calverton
Saturday, Sept. 7 – The Survival Race in Riverhead

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Does anyone know of other mud runs on Long Island? Let us know.

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