I am not ever sure where to begin with this.
Worlds Toughest Mudder 2018, the crazy idea of Jeremy Payne and I to get the “Holy Grail”. I thought i was just joking with him at the end of 2017 and that crazy bastard signed up for the first step, “tougher” and the rest was history.
We completed, Toughest Texas in May, Tougher Tahoe in June and were impatiently preparing for WTM in November.
The time came, the nerves were real and we toe’d the starting line.
Anyone who knows me, I am NOT a runner by any stretch, my goal was to train hard on running to better myself for this race but my body said otherwise. Hernia surgery 8 weeks prior to the race, a possible torn meniscus at our “Warm up” In Sacramento, two weeks prior and a sickness that rocked our Air BnB the week prior that seemed to cleared up for the most part, hours before we started. The cards were clearly stacked.
Lucky for myself, I had Ben Mitchell, Jeremy Payne and April Fernandez on my side, Team “Always Finish Together” was ready.
Prior to this race my longest run EVER Was roughly 17 miles, Toughest Texas (with penalties) and Rugged Maniac were about the same, so I set a goal of 30 miles, in 24 hours which given the above, was ambitious to say the least. But ultimately, my goal was to leave it ALL on the course regardless of mileage. Afterall, only like .010 percent of the world population is crazy enough to try this race every year, so I had that going for me!
The course was wet, cold and daunting. Jeremy and Ben had much larger aspirations than I so I planned to run alot of this alone to reach my goals, but the course quickly changed those plans.
We ran the sprint lap and second laps together. Ben started to get a bit colder and separated on lap 3 and Jeremey did the same as obstacles began to open.
Before night fall, I had completed 3 laps and knew if i pushed i could get 1 more. A quick change of shoes, an added layer in the form of a windbreaker and face mask and the always fun headlight as the only source of course light were added and I was off, this time with Jeremy for our 4th lap of the day.
We completed the 20th mile and although we both seemed to have more in the tank, we knew the cold was coming and it was time to be smart and avoid Medical DQ, which was a real possibility.
Temps dropped into the high 20s and people were pulled off the course left and right. We however, waited it out. Albiet freezing cold in our tents as we were inadequately prepared to “Camp”.
7am rolled around and we knew we needed 1 lap after 8am to be considered WTM Finishers. I literally stood over my now wet and nearly frozen wetsuit for 15 mins, in silence, staring at it. While I could hear Jeremy, Ben planing the morning. I said fuck it. suited up and decided we were best to get out earlier than later since many obstacles were still shut down.
We headed back on course, a CRAZY thought considering in my OCR life I’ve never been in a condition to run on a saturday and wake up able to move, let alone run another lap on a Sunday.
Ben again split off after he completed STACKS (the 35’ plunge) which turned out to be much quicker than the .5 mile penalty. Jeremy and I were again on our own. Jeremy set a solid pace and i did my best to keep up, fighting through unbearable knee pain.
After the biggest hill on course, I caught him and suggested since we didn't do stacks we owe it to ourselves to take the “High Voltage Route” on our last lap. 3 Obstacles, with electricity as our “punishment”. Lucky for us, we got through ElectroShock Therapy, Entrapment and Operation with no shocks, our decision paid off.
Ulitmaltey, we finished together, (although official standing actually has me AHEAD of Payne ;) and we completed our goal of the Holy Grail together, which I think ultimately is the icing on the cake for me.
Jeremy trusted in me to complete this, embarked on this journey with me and pushed me to limits I never thought possible and although im sure he won't admit it, I annoyed the FUCK out of him this whole year, I'm grateful he was the teammate, along with Ben, who made this possible.
We hit 25 miles in 24 hours, a feat I am super proud of. We got our Golden Carabiner, our 25 mile patch and our Grail.
While, 2019 Worlds Toughest Mudder, MAY Happen, I want to see what would happen healthy and fully trained, that is to be determined.
2018 was an epic year with a Truly epic ending.