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Bliss Life

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Mud, water, and foam-- oh my!

Sep 15, 2012 02:22PM

Foam Fest

Written by Micah Holley

Water, foam, dirt, and wooden eight-foot walls are not the only obstacles thrown in your way during the 5k Foam Fest. There are tires, water slides, mud puddles, and highly dreaded electrical barbed wire.

My best friend and I ran this course together and had no clue what to expect. We showed up to Rancho San Rafael Park in Reno wearing tanks and shorts. As we looked around, we realized there were teams dressed as superheroes, “The Hunger Games” characters, soldiers, as well as ballerinas. Lisa and I were unprepared—definitely.

We should have read more about this particular fun run. Instead, we just went with it.

As we lined up at the start line, the DJ urged us to dance to the “YMCA,” all while a volunteer sprayed all of us in the front line with foam. The foam did not stop there. 

We began the race knowing there would be some tough obstacles. What we did not know was how dirty we were going to get. Within a minute of starting the race, we were faced with a slip and slide fully packed with dirty water and foam. Lisa and I sprinted and jumped onto the slide, hoping to slide some serious distance, which we did not achieve. We were soaked. Then the wind picked up and we were numbingly cold. Once we got past the coldness, we embarked on our journey of grassy hills, dirt trails, and the muddy hill.

Note for beginners: You do not want to take time getting up a muddy hill. Run as fast as you can or other runners will race past you while splashing your entire body with the very runny mud. I made that mistake. You can’t outsmart a fun run or its obstacles. It will eat you alive—or cover you with mud.

My friend and I got through smaller obstacles, such as tires and eight-foot walls, and soon hit the most dreaded obstacle of them all—the barbed wire pit.

It was not a mud pit under barbed wire as we had expected. It was a pit of dirt and rocks! I hunched down to the ground with Lisa by my side. The barbed wire was low so we had to get even lower. All of a sudden, I felt a swift pain in my shoulder. “Ouch! What the heck was that?” I thought Lisa had kicked me in my arm. I glared at her in shock. Then she screamed, “Ouch!” We looked at each other and realized we had been electrocuted. Frozen in place, we decided to urge on.

The girl in front of us was rolling through the dirt instead of army crawling, so we copied her technique. Although we were dizzy, cut, and probably bruised, we made it out of the barbed wire with only one electrocution!

We then ran up to what looked like a bounce house. It was like a scene from the TV show “Wipeout.” There was a pool of water and gigantic balls in the way to the exit.

A volunteer said, “It’s easier if you jump on the balls.”

Gullible me believed her. I went running and jumped onto a ball. Almost as fast I had touched the ball, I was flying through the air, landing in the water. She lied! Escaping the blown-up dungeon of death, Lisa and I ran away quickly shocked and laughing that we actually believed the volunteer. Another note to beginners: Don’t trust anyone! The volunteers’ goals are to watch you get dirty—not to help you. 

As we approached the finish line, our shoes were packed with mud, our hair smelled of cow manure, and my sock was at the middle of my foot. We finished our race with another sprint and jump onto an extremely long slip and slide, high from adrenaline and caked with the pride of conquering the most heinous obstacles.

We picked up our free towel, cleaned ourselves off and walked barefoot back to the car. Would we ever go through such a dirty day again? Absolutely.


Find the nearest location to you and join in on the fun:

Oct. 20: Austin, TX Nov. 3: Dallas/FW, TX

All photos courtesy of Foam Fest.

See the photos from our journey through the pits of foam, dirt, and mud by clicking here.