So if you remember back to The Walking Dead season 2 opener, there was the commercial for Run For Your Lives, which is a zombie infested 5k race that is held in multiple cities throughout the year. We mentioned it briefly here, but what good is that. I needed to see this for myself, so I gathered a team of elite athletes…ok, we’re not really elite, nor are we athletes, but we still went. Off to Amesbury, Massachusetts we go! Keep reading to hear my thoughts on the race.
Since we had a 3 hour plus drive, we were starting to get some of the scoop via their Twitter account @RunFromUndead as people were rolling in early due to the heats running all day. The one that stuck out was something about a slip and slide. Already starting to get anxious to do this and we weren’t even close to the NY border! The other thing to keep in mind is that this is to be my first 5k race. I figure if I am going to run, it damn well better be fun. We finally arrive, and sure as the tweet said, a big ass slip and slide running down the face of a mountain. Oh yes, this should be fun indeed.
After we set up camp a few minutes away, we were shuttled over to the event via bus, which looked like a scene out of a horror movie with the folks inside covered in mud from the previous heats. What the hell did we get ourselves into. We get there and the place is packed. Filled with mud covered runners, yet to be destroyed participants, and of course, zombies. We didn’t give ourselves a lot of time to look around before we had to get in line for our heat. Here is how the race works.
You have a belt, with three flags. These flags are your lives basically. Make it through with at least one still attached, you are “alive” and the top three from each heat are awarded prizes. All of those who finish however, regardless of your status, are awarded a medal (see below), which is far from cheap. It’s actually pretty cool and I will hang it in my home with pride. Now the site taunted us with a mention of 12 obstacles, which unfortunately was not the case, and more than likely due to the constant rain for two days before the race. So, remove a handful of obstacles, which was probably for safety reasons, and replace with mud. A lot of mud. So much mud. I think you get the idea how much mud I am talking about. Of course the biggest obstacle throughout the race is the onslaught of zombie attacks. All types of zombies, all over the place. Some stand there and moan while others grab at your flags. Some even catch you off guard and when you think you got by them, they will chase you down. Others are placed in groups. You get yourself through, and just as you feel like you have a second to catch your breath, you turn the corner, and there are more. Be careful of your surroundings however as some may have overplayed their parts a bit too much and got a little overzealous. Much of the makeup is excellent and very well done.
The obstacles were nothing major, however they are disguised well, and fit the part. Some tunnels, a smoke filled room, a maze (with a lost guest) and again, all of that wonderful mud. Once you get yourself to the end, we had to climb a wall that lead to a giant mud puddle slide just to make sure you are completely filthy. All of this unfortunately took a lot of time to complete as we began to bottleneck at the top of the hill, which in turn added quite a bit of time to your total. No big deal for me as I took a long time to complete anyways. Then, on to the slip and slide! Down the hill you go into yet another mud puddle, followed by an army crawl under an electric fence, and on to victory (and beer).
The rest of the night is filled with food and inexpensive beer (compared to most events such as this), along with bands, a few vendors, and just a flat our great night. At this point, everyone is fairly exhausted and too tired to get out of hand, so it was a very calm, but fun party.
All in all, this was truly a great time and I recommend that you participate in one of their upcoming events if you can. Very well put together by Reed Street Productions and with a huge help from the United States Marine Corps, there were not a lot of hiccups. People all around had a great time and nothing got out of hand (although I did hear of one injury – still not bad out of I think 6,000+ runners). Take a look at some pics from the event, as well as the video I shot while running.
CONTEST – Want to win a shirt just like the ones that we wore in the race? Tell us your favorite zombie movie in the comment section and we will randomly select 1 winner this weekend! (The only size available is large)