Rugged Maniac returned to NYC at the Aviator Sports Event Complex on June 28, 2014. I am happy to cross mud run off of my bucket list. Rugged Maniac is a good entry race; it is only 3.1 miles with 25 obstacles spread throughout the course. Though the venue is out in the middle of nowhere Brooklyn, parking is free and they offer a free shuttle from the subway station. Do allow plenty of time to get there, especially with weekend train schedules.
I wouldn’t call this an obstacle. There was one tiny machine that was barely spitting out any foam. Most people just ran passed it all together.
A series of sand dunes which weren’t too high. Fairly easy to run up and down.
Barricades (x3)/Jacob’s Ladder
Crawling under a net (nothing exciting here).
Your supposed to jump from “rooftop” to “rooftop.” Harder than it looks. They are further apart than you think.
You have the option to carry 50 or 25 lbs. I opted for the lighter load (nothing to prove here).
Climbing up and over more walls. Being tall would be helpful here. But little me pretty much used every part of my body to pull myself up.
A series of see-saws. Much easier to do now that I have been riding my longboard.
I was so hot by this time. It felt so good to jump into the cool, muddy water.
Beam Me Up
Climbing up more walls. This one is much easier with the beams as opposed to a solid wall. The only sketchy part is at the top and swinging over to the other side. I wish people would give me a little room and not be right on my ass. Oh, well. It’s there fault if they are too close and I kick them in the face.
More refreshing dirty water to jump into.
I love climbing cargo nets. Might be my favorite obstacle.
Reminds me of the television show Wipeout. Didn’t fall in. The plank you walk across was really wide and not hard to balance on at all.
Balance or Bust
Probably my best obstacle. Walking across a 2×4 plank seems like cakewalk now that I have been longboarding and slacklining, a solid, stable piece of wood is a pretty easy surface.
But don’t worry if you fall in—more dirty water to land into.
Jumping on a trampoline to get to the other side. Wish there was more trampoline. I love jumping on trampolines. You can’t help but smile.
Crawling down and up two sets of pipes. This was my least favorite obstacle. There was a rope in the uphill pipe to help you climb out. I wore shorts, so this is where my knees got cut up the most.
Crawling through muddy water under barbed wire. This was the most muddy obstacle but could have been muddier. It was fun. The wire wasn’t electrified like other races. My knees may have gotten scraped up here, too but not as bad as the Pipe Dream because the mud and water is less abrasive.
Like monkey bars but with rings. My worst obstacle (no surprise). It’s the only one I didn’t complete fully. I dropped after four rings. I just don’t have that upper body strength yet. More push-ups for me. It’s definitely one of those things you need to do regularly at a CrossFit gym.
The most challenging and most rewarding. Few extremely fit people could get up the wall without help. Like this guy:
I pointed at the guy straight in front of me and said, “you got me?” I ran to gain as much momentum as I could, climbed up the wall and reached out and grabbed his hand. He was like, “don’t give up!” I didn’t. I was determined to get over. I clawed my way up the wall and swung a leg over.
I just had to crawl across another cargo net, which is cool because runners that are starting the race are right below you.
Lastly, the fun part: down the big slide to the finish line.
I loved doing the obstacles, the running in between is my least favorite part. I’m happy to have done all the obstacles without injuries. I would have like it to be muddier. I think it’s just this location; we ran on pavement more than through the woods.
I also wish I could jump through fire, just because that sounds like fun! I would recommend Rugged Maniac to others looking to try out an obstacle race. I would do another type of race, but I don’t think I am hardcore enough for Tough Mudder just yet. Like I said, I don’t really like the whole running part and Tough Mudder is 10 miles.
Tips for Next Year
- Do an earlier race. I signed up for 10:30 am. There was little shade coverage on the course so it got really hot.
- Wear slim fitting capris. I didn’t have any old ones that I didn’t care about, so I wore shorts this year. Although my scabbed knees are like my battle scars and reminds me of a job well done, I think I will protect my knees next year.
- Bring lots of friends. These things are more fun in a team (with coordinated outfits, of course).