Our customer service and marketing manager Josie took part in the Spartan Race South East Sprint last weekend. Below she answers some of the most asked questions regarding the race
What is the Spartan Race?
The Reebok Spartan Race is a worldwide obstacle race company which provides races for all fitness levels as well as competitive and elite races
Which Spartan Race should I do?
There are three main types of races; the sprint, super & beast. Plus a kids option too
13KM + Distance
20KM + Distance
For ages 4-13
The level you choose will depend on your fitness level and whether you have done anything like this before, but for most people I would recommend trying the Sprint first. Despite almost a year of training with a personal trainer I still found this quite difficult so I would recommend starting with the easiest option, you can always work up to the bigger ones. The obstacle numbers and distance are a rough guide so make sure you're aware of this when you train. The course in Kent that we completed was actually over 6km and had 28 obstacles. Below the red line shows the Sprint course and the blue the Super course:
How do I sign up for the Spartan Race?
There are lots of different locations to do the Spartan Race. If you go onto their website and put in your postcode they will show you all of the races close to your location. You can also filter this by the level of race you want to compete in. The price depends on the type of race and location but we paid £40pp while they had a deal on, keep an eye on their Facebook page as they reguarly have offers
Is Spartan Race for charity?
You don't have to raise money for charity but once your friends and family see what crazy antics you'll be getting up to I'm sure they would be happy to donate. Our team created a justgiving page and we raised £477 for Cancer Research
How to train for the Spartan Race
After signing up you'll receive some great emails from the organisers which will include a training plan and obstacle tips. I would recommend working on your strength, especially upper body as there are a lot of climbing obstacles including monkey bars with a twist, rope climbs, sandbag carries, tyre flips etc. I would also work on cardio and make sure you can run the km that you've signed up to do...and then make sure you can do this on an incline and decline. I underestimated the amount of sheer hills that would be in the course
What to wear for the Spartan Race
When friends told me to expect to get muddy I again underestimated the sheer amount of mud...ending up head to toe fully covered in mud with my trainers falling off and getting lost in the mud a few times! This will of course depend on the weather and location of your race. Ours was in Kent, England on a typical British rainy day
Be sure to take the weather into consideration when deciding what to wear but below are a few of my tips:
Bottoms: As well as crawling under things like barbed wire fences you'll also be climbing up and over high obstacles in front of other participants. For protection from the obstacles as well as keeping your modesty I would recommend wearing gym leggings or long shorts
Tops: Despite it being cold and rainy I found a tank top to be warm enough for the duration of the race so I would recommend either a tank or lighweight t-shirt. You want tops that will dry quickly and wick away sweat. Lots of runners had matching t-shirts on to represent their Spartan team (Girls, I would also recommend wearing a sports bra to keep everything in place)
Trainers: I wore my normal Nike gym trainers but if you have some trainers with good grip such as trail running shoes that you don't mind getting muddy go for those as the more grip the better. Wear them in to make sure they'll be comfortable for the whole race
Gloves: Before the race I researched whether I needed gloves and on finding some horror stories about blisters, cuts etc I purchased the Reebok specific Spartan Race gloves. At the start of the race these felt great, protected my hands and had plenty of grip, however after about 15 minutes of getting covered in mud they became useless and less grippy than my hands so I ended up taking them off. Do some research into the course and likely weather conditions if you decide to purchase some gloves, I imagine in less muddy conditions they may have been more useful. Despite not wearing them on most of the obstacles I did remain blister and cut free...phew!
Clothes for after the race: Despite being warm during the race, after receiving my medal and t-shirt I quickly became very cold so make sure you have a warm change of clothes. The changing/shower conditions are poor (ours had a couple of hose pipes as showers and a tent with extremely muddy ground) so bring clothes you can easily change into and maybe old clothes that you don't mind getting dirty. Be sure to pack spare undies too...you really do get mud everywhere!