I AM A SPARTAN AROO

“Spartans ready your breakfast and eat hearty, for tonight we dine in hell!”

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My Spartan race experience was so freaking amazing. There is so much to tell but there is no way I could tell you everything, this would become a novel. So I’ll give you the detailed highlights.

I was initially supposed to race with some ladies but that didn’t work out so I put on my Greek panties and went solo. I wasn’t even really nervous because I knew things would work out perfectly for me. And guess what? They did. I had not been there 5 minutes and met Howard, aka Mr. Kinky, who would become one of my race buddies. We hit it off from hello. Within 10 mins we had nicknames for each other. And within 12 minutes “Our” girlfriend had joined us and it was on and popping from there. They were team Chaos and are also members of Georgia Obstacle Racers and Mud Runners, or GORMR. They were  largest group represented there. They were the coolest of cool.

Okay so get this, I had to jump/climb/crawl over a 6-7′ wall just to get to the start line.  I’m walking around that area wondering how the hell do I get in? When the volunteer says you have to go over. (Humm maybe I was wondering out loud, lol) I asked, are you serious? She said yep! So that’s when I got my first, bruise, LMAO. So we got the Spartan speech which ended with “Look at the Spartan to your left. Now look at the Spartan to your right you will draw strength from them and they from you. They will not let you fail!  Truer words have never been spoken. And a chant, Who are you? Answer, I AM A SPARTAN!! With that we were off. .01 mile in, the first obstacle, a mud moat…white sneakers became Georgia clay red. Then there were hurdles 6′, 8′ and 9′ maybe. We did them as a team. 2 out of 25+ DONE 🙂

The one that I’ll never forget, would be that damn red bucket that they made me fill with rocks and carry it 1/4 mile up hill! The bastard  Persians, I know Xerxes, was behind that. (rolling my eyes at him) I know that bucket had to weigh at least 75lbs. I did fine for the first 1-2 minutes but then…I was done. I started pulling, dragging, and praying. It was then my Spartan guardian angel showed up. I put my bucket down and he picked it gave my some carrying techniques and cheered me on. I had never seen this man before. I walked about another 50 yards and my back started hurting. I had to put the bucket down, again. And there was Zack ( I later learned his name) He gave me some sort of back rub and chile, I almost wanted to kiss him. At first I was like whoa, whatcha doing back there? Then I was like, whoa, yeah that’s it! LMAO. He said, “See, I got ya.” He picked my bucket up again gave me more guidance and I was off again. When I finally made to the dump spot, they were asking us to dump on a higher end, which meant I was going to have to lift that heavy ass bucket over my head and over the ledge into the dump area. I’m thinking damn really? No way. And there was my Spartan, he dumped my bucket for me and gave me the biggest hug and whispered words of encouragement to me and sent me on my way.  That was an awful challenge yet a beautiful challenge.
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The mud pits, the MUD PITS the ROLING MUD PITS.  (Is that what Adel meant when she sang Rolling in the Deep?) The muddy clay was slippery, and the water was freezing. My feet sank to shin deep and I had to battle the slopes for my sneakers. And battle the cold water for my breath. So when I slid into the first pit, and the cold water hit my body I almost went into shock. SN: If you have ever seen the Movie Sugar Hill with Wesley Snipes,  the last hit his father took that killed him he began to say whoo, whoo, whoo. Yeah that’s how I was doing it. If not, how about jumping into a cold pool, filled with ice. There were four pits back to back. Each a little deeper that the preceding one and colder, if that’s possible. I went from waist deep to nipple deep by the time I exited the 4 pit. Did I mention the drop off in pit 3? Yeah there was a drop-off. Oh to be 5’3″, smh. Dory from Finding Nemo came to mind, “Just keep walking, just keep walking.”

Then there was a cargo net hanging from a cliff that was as high as the Statue of Liberty. You had to use a rope that was dangling from the cargo net to get to the cargo net. But it wasn’t bad. It was actually one of the easier challenges. I enjoyed that one. I’m sure I looked like Spiderwoman on that one.

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“No retreat, no surrender, that is Spartan law.”  

The Tarzan swing was the hardest thing for me to do. We had to grab a rope and swing over a, say it with me now, a mud moat! I must have stood there 10 minutes trying to get the nerve to do it. Lawd have mercy, I was all Jane, honey waiting for Tarzan to show up so I could hitch a ride on his back. Hell even Cheetah would have sufficed. Of course the people around me were giving me tips and cheering me on. My race buddy was standing next to me trying to get up the nerve as well. She eventually took the burpee penalty. But I knew I had to do this. That was my goal complete every challenge. And it Spartan law. So I closed my eyes, held on tight and swung….right into the mud moat, LOL. But, I tried. Maybe had I kept my eyes open I could have made it to the other side without yet another cold mud bath. SN: Does anyone know if Georgia red clay is good for your hair or skin? I’m sure there is some around here somewhere.

I carried sandbags up ungodly, unforgiving small mountains, I hoisted 80lb sandbags 2 stories in the air. It was about this time someone with a megaphone began to yell out my name. “Denna? Denna is that you? ” I initially thought I was hearing things but then the person started walking towards me without outstretched arms. And she said I was looking for you. I’m so glad I saw you.” Total shock on my part. Turns out she was a friend of a friend who I had met a few months ago. Never expected that. You know who is watching or where.   I carried a 60lb Atlas ball 20 yards did 5 burpees and took it back 20 yards. I completed a memory challenge, you had to read the directions that were upside down. You had to read 1 word and 7 numbers and commit them to memory and provide it when asked later in the race (which was about 10 obstacles and 1 hour later) I still remember it MIKE 384 7893. AROO!

I climbed an inverted wall that was about 10 feet high and had to belly slide down the other side. I made a clean spot on the plywood (O_O). I traversed 3 walls with someone’s hand on my ass for 2 walls. No worries, I returned the favor and groped her ass for 2.5 walls. Matter of fact, I touched a LOT of foreign ass on Saturday, LOL. And there were more than a few hands on mine.  I climbed a 10, 12, 15 foot wall with help of my race buddy Howard. God bless Howard, I stepped on that mans quads, cupped hands, and shoulder and possibly his ear,  just to name a few of the parts. Lord if it were not for him, I know I’d still have 5 more obstacles to go, right now lol.

I crossed monkey bars, all but riding Laura’s shoulders. There were cargo nets several stories high. I threw a spear, after all I am a SPARTAN. I climbed a rope that was suspended about 2 stories high, well I got to the attic, of the first story, lol. My arms were done and the I was muddy and the rope was wet and muddy. Did I mention I had to go chest deep in yet another, muddy ice bath to get to the rope? Yep they were suspended in the middle of a huge mud pit. That had to be the Persians again.

I low crawled about 100+ yards through puddles that threatened to drown me, mud so thick I was losing my pants all this, under varying levels of barbed wire suspended mere inches above me, only to reach  a mountain of mud that was nearly impossible to climb. There was nothing to grip, nothing to get your footing on. And once at the top I realized that oh, now I have to slide into this mud hole that is abdomen deep on this tall lady, so that means it’s drowning level for me. There was a huge board dividing it lengthwise. It rises about 7 -8 feet out of the water and disappears below the surface of the water. They tell me I have to swim under. Wait, say what now? How wide is this thing, how far does it extend into the water? Damn! They say it’s 4 inches wide and only about 6 inches into the water. I give them the you better not be shitting me look and check. They seem to be correct. I look at my race buddy and say, I’m just going to do it. She said, “Really?” Yep, I’m just going to do it and get it over with. I’ve come to far to be stopped by a bit of muddy water. Hell I am muddy water at this point. And with that I disappeared under the water. I resurfaced to cheers and applause. Now, I’m literally soaked from head to toe and covered in mud from head to toe. From there, there was another football field of low crawling under barbed wire. Oh yeah, then onto the Slip Wall. That was a bitch! The wall was at an angle wet, covered with mud and they want you to go up and over.  Fortunately I made it over the first time, no back sliding (or belly sliding). I think my toes came out of the bottom of my sneakers and just dug in and held on. What else could have happened? Everyone wasn’t so lucky.

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There were several other obstacle to complete before completing the challenge. I honestly can’t remember them. I do remember the final mud moat that was waist deep, I waded through that and then I could feel the warmth of the fire! I had done it! I had complete every single challenge they threw at me, all that was left was to jump the fire. I did it. And I did to applause cheers and whistles. What an awesome feeling. And when they placed my medal around my neck I felt like a real Spartan, Leonidas would have been proud, AROO!!

I can’t wait to add my super medal, to go along with my sprint and finally complete the set with the beast medal. Super proud of myself for completing this race.

The video shows what I saw the following day as I volunteered, as well as few stills of my muddy self.  I was thinking to myself, wow you did that! Hey you did that as well. As I watched many many people do the challenges I could just feel the pride swell within me. I was just so proud of myself.

 

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The Article

Wednesday February 25, 2015, was THE BEST DAY! I was the featured success story in the Atlanta Journal Constitution. Boom Shaka Laka! You talk about psyched, amped, turnt up, LOL you name it. If it means excited I was/am.

 

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This entire process has been somewhat surreal but to actually make a well-known publication for weight loss, I’ve come a looong way baby! I’m so grateful for the drive and determination that God has blessed me with. As well as  for everyone who has supported during my journey. This would have been much more difficult without my support system. And it would not have been half as fun.

Despite how far I’ve come, my journey is far from over, I still have a bout 20-25 more pounds I’d like to lose. But honey boo boo chile, I’m much closer to the maintenance portion of this journey than the beginning.

 

So me being me, I was showing the article to random strangers as I was buying newspapers. I would whip open the paper and say, “Hey, look that’s me!” LOL. Yes, I did that. It was surprisingly well received 🙂 I received tons of congrats, and way to go’s. Some people even went to get their own copies of the paper so they could actually read the article. Umm, but there weren’t any left, someone had bought them all, lol.

Start and don’t quit, that’s the key. And going my March weight loss camp to kick-start your own journey. I want everyone to Get Right and Get Tight 🙂

 

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Flourless Protein Pancakes

These pancakes are delish. Great for breakfast or a snack. They are one of my favorites. Super quick , easy and tasty! Everything you need, complex carb and good protein. I sometimes add berries and/or greek yogurt to mine. But plain is just as delish. Today I only added 6oz of almond milk on the side. Makes 1 serving!

 

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Salvation

The pianist begins to play as the pastor walks from the pulpit. Let the church say Amen! The doors of the church are now open. Will there be one? Will there be one?
I look from left to right, take a deep breath and make my way to the center aisle adjust my dress and begin my walk to salvation.

Because I have just spent 60+ minutes in HELL and I don’t want to spend an eternity there. Yep he was  ’bout the devils business today because I remember my pieces and parts being on fiyah.  That’s really all I have because I’m so tired I just remember the feelings not the actions that brought about the feelings, LMAO. I know it was mostly upper body but that’s ALL I remember. I also remember the deadlifts and those 10 plates on the leg press machine.  Oh and I remember walking to my truck. Even with all that said, I know I loved it. And I know at one point I laughed so hard I cried, cause some dude booty was hungry and eating up his sweats that were DIRECTLY in my line of sight whilst I was trying to press those 10 plates! My gym time is SO FREAKING awesome!

So when I reached the preacher…LOL

Did I happen to mention, I went back to the gym and took a TRX class? Umm well yeah, I did. As I drove to class I began a conversation with myself and it went something like this.

What in the heck are you doing? Why are you going to this class? Aren’t you still tired from that dip in the fiery pit from earlier?

My responses went something like this.

Idk, sigh. Idk, sigh. Hell, yes!

And then I was thinking well I’ll just do what I can. Some will beat none. But, in reality that will not work for that class. My instructors have already have expectations. I’ve talked so much trash, it’s a must I back it up. My instructors even refereed to me as “Beast” as opposed to my name, lol. That just sealed my fate, smh. So I had to beast it out. Jesus take the wheel.

And I did 2 miles on the dreadmill. Yeah, it was slow but I did it 🙂

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Dedicated and Determined #GRGT

Progress

Everyone wants a quick fix. We live in a microwave society and that is not in our best interest for many reasons. It’s like the old saying goes, “Anything worth having is worth working for and waiting for.” When things come to fast I don’t think we get a true appreciation for it. We don’t value it like we should. This is true with weight loss as well. We need time to adjust to new mindsets, new bodies, and a new way of life.

The image that I am sharing comes from time, dedication, determination and hard work. I’d rather it take me some time to achieve my results and they be permanent rather than fast and temporary.  My results are from 5-6 days a week workouts, healthy food options and a new mindset. I’m still working towards my goals but I can see all that hard work is paying off in a big way.

Where would I be if I had quit? What would my progress look like (if any) if I had listened to my friends every time  they said ,”Girl go ahead and have that cake.” Or, “Treat yourself your deserve it.” Not where I am now that’s for sure.  They say a picture is worth 1000 words, or in this case it has left some speechless 🙂   Trust the process and never quit.

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Recognizable Beast

It seems as though this TRX class is everything! I’m loving it. Yes, I went back again today. The thing of it is, I was super late for class and had hopes of just being able to slide into class but low and behold all straps were filled. My heart sank 😦 Instead of moving on to something else I just kinda stood outside the class like a little lost puppy wanting to come in from the rain. Just as I was about to tuck my tail and move on, I noticed Amiee (one of the instructors) coming towards the door. And when she said come on in, I was overjoyed! I hurried inside before she changed her mind, lol. I was greeted with such enthusiasm from Victor, the other instructor. I felt right at home, in my house of pleasure and pain, lmao!

So this is how it went down today. When I grabbed my strap, it was break time for the class, but it was suggested that I catch up, (giggles). Hey, whatever, I’m bout this life. Bring it. And he brought it, LOL. If you all don’t know by now, when I show up, I show up with Beast Mode on. I’ll take on all challengers! So during class I choose to do the advanced moves, not because I’m showing off, but because everyone should work to their ability so that you can get what you need out of the workout. So, that is what I do. I challenge myself. And if in doing that I push others to challenge themselves, that’s even better. Even the guys, (giggles). It might be a “Mans World”, but that’s, my class.

So when class was over, Victor looks at me ands says, since you were late, “I know you want some more, do you want to stay?” Well at first I thought he was kidding but I soon found out he was not! So, in my mind, my inner Beast is being recognized. My desire, dedication and determination are shining through. And that is moving others to become a part of team GRGT! How freaking amazing is that.
My class, after class, was amazing. I worked my legs like nobody’s business. My biceps and my core. Chile my core, lol. It’s getting stronger that’s for sure. I love, love, love being pushed and challenged, it only makes me better and stronger.

Check out my video…whatcha think?

Dedicated and Determined to Get Right Get Tight

Rambonian Beast

I took another TRX Class at the gym. I have to giggle to myself when I think about it, because the first class I took with them I talked a little trash about it, and they knew it, LOL. So, I KNEW when I went back I needed to be ready. Did I say I was STILL recouping from that leg session on Wednesday? So when I walked in Victor and Aimee were Ooooh she’s BACK! I wore my camo leggings I went with the intent to go to war, lol. And chile let me tell you a war it was. But as most of you know, that’s how I like it. Force me to engage beast mode. I’ll never back down or quit. As we got into the routine we had to do squats, I knew they would burn but I had my poker face. So I’m going pretty deep and happy with it, and Aimee decided to do JUMP squats. Well I took it as an unspoken challenge (gives her The Rock Eyebrow because she KNEW I was beat down from Wednesday) I accepted the challenge like a true Rambonian Beast (LMAO) so WE did jump squats! Some of the others in class were looking like WTH, yeah yall can have THAT! We did all sorts of moves, various squats, regular rows, high rows, bicep curls, triceps, planks, mountain climbers, and MANY other things. There was a cute senior couple in there and the lady was next to me and she kept saying, “Wow, you are just a little Dynamo.” It was an awesome class. I really like that 12:30 class. I’ll go back. I was suppose to go back to the 5:30 class but sometimes teenagers can throw a monkey wrench in you plans. So I’m glad I did go early. Day 13 of the challenge done! GRGT