Inadvertent Mud Run (or, Why It’s Nice to Get Your Shoes Dirty Now and Then)

Is there a sillier form of entertainment than shelling out hard-earned money to get up at the asgard-crack of dawn and slog it through the elements with three hundred people I don’t know?  I don’t know.

Yesterday marked the first race I’ve run since October, which is a shame for me, because I love races, even though they are dumb.  Seriously, races of any sort are the antithesis of everything I profess to love about running:

  • Running is great because I don’t have to carve out a huge block of time from my already emaciated body of available time to go to a gym; I can just step out my front door and off I go.
  • Racing?  Yeah, I have to get up at least an hour prior to the event, drive somewhere — usually thirty minutes or so — park, get out, wander around until the event starts, then drive back.  Typically it takes the whole morning, even for a short race like a 5k.  Tyrannical time sink.
  • I don’t need an overpriced membership to a fancy gym, I can just toss on some sneakers and hit the road.
  • Let’s forget about all the money I’ve spent on running gear: shoes, watches, shirts, hats, belts, reflectors… okay, I’m getting embarrassed.  Races cost money.  I’m paying money to run.  That’s stupid.  Granted, many runs benefit local charities, which is great, but on a personal level, it’s still extra money out of my pocket when I could just as easily run for free.
  • Running is fantastic for solitude, reflection, and relaxing.
  • Racing isn’t.  Nothing like quick-stepping down a blocked-off city street or backwoods trail with hundreds or thousands of your closest people you don’t know yet to keep you from having a thought to yourself.

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