Continued from One Tough Mudder, Part 1…
Where were we? Ah yes, I was freezing my cheeks off. Moving on!
Scariest: About halfway through, we had to Walk the Plank. As a kid, I jumped off the high-dive at the pool once in a while, and I can swim just fine, but I don’t know, faced with a drop three times my height all of a sudden, my heart started throbbing in my limbs. It didn’t help that the lifeguards had to save a drowning guy while I was standing there at the edge looking down on the scene.
I couldn’t contemplate my fate for very long though because a bitch with a bullhorn was up there screaming at everybody to jump, so I did, and I plunged down, down, down—the fifteen feet seemed like a mile, and the water went all the way to the center of the earth—and I felt like I might never reach the surface again. But I did, and I swam out of there, and yeah. I did it. Go, me!
During the former, I got zapped three times, once on my left shoulder and twice on my right butt-cheek. (Looking at our team “before” photo, I’m kind of surprised that my ass didn’t get more of a jangling.) Running through the latter, I hit no fewer than five zappy strings.
And I don’t even know what to say about how it felt. It fucking hurt? It felt like I was getting electrocuted? I don’t know. It wasn’t like anything I’d ever felt. It hurt a lot.
Worst, Runner-up: By far, the worst physical part of the Mudder was the running. First and foremost, I hate running. I hate running. I hate running.
I don’t think I can say it enough times or with enough emphasis to get across my vitriolic hate for running. My body doesn’t like to move fast in a forwardly direction. (And “fast” should probably be in quotation marks. Let’s say “faster than an amble”.) The impact makes my hips, knees, and shoulders hurt. And even though I can walk a marathon and dance/hula hoop for HOURS, my cardiovascular system mistakes running for imminent death every time.
Also, it’s so BORING.
And, as I mentioned in my post about the thwarted Tough Mudder Mid-Atlantic, keeping up with my teammates was going to be a real challenge. I solved that problem by scrambling through the obstacles and taking off, so I’d get a little ahead of the group. They would inevitably catch up, pass me, and wait at the next obstacle, but I didn’t get too far behind that way.
But! In addition to my loathing for the sport of quickly covering distance by foot, I’ve been experiencing some Old Lady Problems lately. A couple months ago, my right heel started feeling bruised, particularly after double-unders, but it wasn’t actually bruised, and why pay $70 for a specialist copay when you can ask Facebook about these things? Dr. Facebook diagnosed me as having plantar fasciitis.
I’ve been doing stretches and rolling my foot on a lacrosse ball and whatnot, which has helped. However, the heel was tender at the very start of the Mudder, so I knew it would be an issue, and I worried about what problems might arise if I favored that foot for 11 miles.
Z told me to take tiny steps and lift with my quads, in essence to favor both feet, and to keep them relaxed, making sure my heel touched the ground with every step so it had a split second to rest. When I concentrated, I was able to do that, but you know, there were people to watch and call-and-response cheers (One of us: “Hercu-!” The rest: “‘Lisa!” [Repeat]) to do, so it’s possible I got distracted one or two times.
About mile 8, three Team ‘Lisa members were up ahead; Hammer was just behind me because her knee had gotten totally jacked up somewhere in there. And my right leg crumpled. Just crumpled underneath me. I stopped and looked at the back of my leg, and there in the middle of my calf was a crater about three inches in diameter and an inch deep. Hammer came up beside me.
“WHAT IS THAT?” I said, pointing at the alien that was backflipping inside my leg.
“Oh! You have a Charley horse! Quick, put your foot back and stretch the calf out,” she said. So I did, and whew!, it totally helped. Hammer to the rescue.
Thanks to her, when Charley came galloping by again at mile 10 and then again when I was reaching up for the monkey bars, I knew what to do, and later in the car, Z lent me his
to roll out my calf, and it was magically hurty and helpy. (Shiv insists on calling it The Stick, even when there’s another article or possessive pronoun in front.)
[Note to everyone: you should buy a The Stick and use your The Stick every day because it will make your life betterer.]
Now those of you who know me will say, “What could possibly be a Worse Part for Amy than running?” And it’s true, there wasn’t anything else that was so physically taxing (and BORING).
But there was one part that was, spiritually and emotionally, the Super-Worstest of All the Parts, and that was what Shiv likes to call Shitter Village, i.e., the giant bank of port-a-potties at the start line.
Of course, nobody likes a port-a-potty (except maybe Flukie), especially ones that have been enthusiastically used for pre-event lightening of loads, as it were.
And I’m not going to say, after a sausage & egg breakfast and a soy latte, that I left Shitter Village better than I found it or anything, but the first port-a-potty I tried to use, but ran out of screaming—
Actually, let me address the previous occupant directly.
Dear Sir or Madam,
I understand your impulse to squat. I really do. Nobody wants to put his ass directly on the seat of any public toilet, much less a portable one that doesn’t flush. But since you, in your crouched position, managed to miss the hole entirely and shit directly on the back of the seat, I feel like it’s your duty to wrap your hands, wrists, and forearms—whatever you need to do—in toilet paper, and sweep that pile into the space where it’s meant to go.
EVERYONE ELSE THAT HAD TO GO IN THERE AND WITNESS THAT, THUS LIVE WITH THAT IMAGE FOR THE REST OF THEIR LIVES
I guess you could say that the Most Worstest of All the Parts, Much Worserer Than Everything Else By Far was the shit show.
And we’ve come full circle.