Why do we love adventure racing? The answer is simple: You don't know what you're getting into. It's an adventure. It's something that's hard to describe and can only be experienced. Most people have never been covered in mud, jumped in a river or climbed a high wall, but it gives you a great sense of accomplishment. It's a test of the mind and body. It's all about facing your fears and having fun at the same time.
TEAMWORK MAKES THE DREAM WORK
Adventure racing is a team sport. More importantly, adventure racing emphasizes teamwork, skills and decision making above fitness. Teams (ie: you and your sweetheart) with the ability to think clearly under stress and combine their various fitness levels to go fast, along with strong navigation skills, are the ones that find success at the finish line.
When I first saw a video about adventure racing, it excited me. They seemed to capture the human spirit in raw form, with male-female teams traversing long distances, sometimes hundreds of miles, over remote terrain, tackling a myriad of challenges together — relying upon each other 100 percent. Their eyes were burning and I felt their wilderness. I felt alive. I wanted to be part of it.
But there was one huge “but”…. I was far from a person who could be described as an athlete. Lucky for me, there are so many adventure races out there for anyone who would like to be part of that lifestyle.
HOW TO GET STARTED?
Find your local adventure racing community.
Do some research, reach out and ask questions. Get to know the other people involved — they'll become great friends and resources.
Find out what events and races are happening around you—or what events you may want to make a special trip to visit.
It will allow you to keep a running calendar, which you can organize and hone as you go.
Begin by volunteer at these events and races to get acquainted with the sport and the community.
There's no better way to familiarize yourself than by taking some time to feel the world out, somewhat on the sidelines, before diving in.
And finally. Just do it.
Jump into the water, dive in, and you just might find that you're a wonderful “swimmer” in this environment.