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i DO ALWAYS

First things first: This home grown super bad ass forthcoming race has graced me with the priviledge to grant one lucky reader one free entry! Details at the end of the post!

Now on with the (P)review!

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This past weekend I got the chance of a lifetime: I was asked to preview the course for the upcoming home-grown  Obstacle Course Race, (OCR) Trails ‘N Tribulations (TNT – see what they did there!) and offer my expert opinions and insights-as if I am actually an expert! I checked my schedule, responded positively and invited Red to come with-sadly, she was down with a mild bout of influenza.I would be joining a crew of OCR fanatics from the South Austin based MYLO Obstacle Fitness…more on them to come later!

I did a double take when I saw the venue- Rocky Hill Ranch…

It seemed familiar, so I dug back through my old reviews and discovered that yes, I had raced there and loved the venue- I ran the Rebel Race 15k in mid-2012, and the trails at the venue were that days major saving grace… the event was awful, downright dangerous, but the venue itself was amazing…since then I have wanted to return to the location and see what those trails were made of when a well organized race was in place…

I woke up a little later than I wanted to on Sunday morning and dragged myself out the door late….the venue is about 1 hour and 30 minutes from my San Antonio home, and I wanted to be out the door in time to get there by 0900 hrs….

I didn’t make it until 0945…. bad MuddyJ… I parked and with no one around, I called Jason-the event coordinator- and asked him for directions out to where the group was… I remembered the trails out there being numerous and vast and I wasn’t looking forward to getting lost because I had simply started down the wrong trail. He gave me a quick set of instructions and told me he would backtrack to meet me along the way…and just like that, I was off!

The trails were every bit as challenging and beautiful as I remembered, and the Texas winter had decided to take the day off…. so with the sun shining overhead and the mercury tipping around 70 degrees, I stuck my VFF’s on my belt and padded off down the trails in my favorite footwear…none!

I have written about how much I loved these trails in the past, but here’s some pics so y’all don’t think I am lying!

Less than a mile in Jason met me at the top of a hill, and after a quick handshake and hello, we settled into an easy trot side by side as he explained how the race was conceived and discussed with me plans for the race- I won’t go into detail, mostly because my memory is awful and I don’t want to get things wrong, but my general first impression was that he is an individual who brings passion and excellence to everything the attempts…in between doubling as a stuntman for Vin Diesel….

We met the first obstacle, an 8 foot wall, and he dispatched it with ease while I stopped to check out the construction up close. I have done a few home-grown races, and they have each left me worrying about their obstacle’s quality and sturdiness at some point. It was quickly evidenced however, this is not the case: The construction standards he displayed quickly put my mind at ease…everything he has constructed for this course verges on overkill when it comes to durability and quality…

Continuing on, we met with a few more of his obstacles, and I was impressed each time with the construction quality, as well as the variations… I don’t want to give too much away, but each obstacle we met and dispatched was a little different from the “standard” issue OCR versions and thus a bit more challenging…

We caught up to the rest of the group quickly on one of the course’s largest and most impressive obstacles: Conundrum… a 15 foot tall series of back to back peaks… and I completed it backwards and forwards…talk about fun!

I could go into more detail about this race, but that would defeat the purpose of a PREVIEW… so you’ll have to try and grab what you can from some pictures….

I can say, with authority, that it will feature many challenging obstacles, and the the trails themselves should count as an obstacle on their own…. if you’re looking for bragging rights, then this is one home-grown Texan-proud race you don’t want to miss out on!

…..now about that giveaway I mentioned earlier….

Head on over to the MuddyJ Facebook page and check out the “giveaways” tab…(Not mobile friendly, sorry!) for your chance to enter… I am ending it on February 1st to give the winner about 2 weeks to get their affairs in order to get ready!

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