I find it’s very difficult to get the most out of adventure and travel if my current level of fitness is holding me back. I am one of those types who gain weight far too easily and practically have to kill myself to take any of it back off. It’s hardly my fault though – beer is just plain good!

Recently I’ve made a decision to take my health back and do whatever it requires to reach those self-imposed fitness goals. In doing so, I’ve created a new category in Big John’s Adventures in Travel titled Adventure Fitness. For my first post in this new, motivational category, I will take you to my hometown of Greenville, SC for the Goodwill Mud Run of spring, 2015.

The Goodwill Mud Run,  presented by St. Francis Sports Medicine, is a 3.5 mile long race with 35 muddy obstacles for teams to compete in. Rebecca and I entered this event for the first time together.  Our two-person team “Wanderlust” may not have been the fastest, but I definitely believe we had the most fun!

 

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 Team Wanderlust (Rebecca & Big John) feeling all clean and neat just before the run.

 

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Sgt. Zach Ervin of the U.S. Marine Corps motivates racers as they encounter their first obstacle.

Marine Corps reservists from Greenville, SC volunteer their time to ensure runners are properly motivated and complete each obstacle in the prescribed manner.

 

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 Marines motivate runners as they take that first muddy plunge!

 

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In addition to cash prizes being offered to the fastest teams of  various classes, the Goodwill Mud Run hosts a costume contest of sorts that can also be rewarding.

 

 

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These guys were a very colorful bunch of characters!

 

 

Goodwill Mud Run

…and off we go!

Goodwill Mud Run

 

 

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Look at Greenie go!

 

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You’ve got to get low to crawl under that Humvee!

 

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Climbing up and through those dark, wet tunnels!

 

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That marine thought they looked hot and thirsty!

 

 

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 These guys and gals make light work of those cargo nets!

 

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The center of the course runs right through a river!

 

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Now that’s what I call teamwork!

 

 

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Mud diving mania!

 

 

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Ripping up a mountain of mud!

 

 

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A helping hand goes a very long way in conquering this wall!

 

 

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These colors do run!

 

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Low-crawling under wire and through the mud!

 

 

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Goodwill Mud Run

Rebecca is a squinty one-eyed pirate – Argghh!

 

 

Goodwill Mud Run

I look like a wounded seal (the animal, not the highly trained warrior type).

 

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With the finish line in sight!

 

 

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That’s  my “I’m too old for all of this” face!

 

 

Goodwill Mud Run

Me and my sassy little buccaneer!

 

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This is what we looked like just after the run!

 

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She’s so sassy!

 

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I figured they might want a gun show after their run.

 

 

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PDQ provided the venue with tasty chicken, scrumptious sandwiches, and delicious salads.

 

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Liquid Catering was on hand to provide adult beverages and soft drinks for thirsty racers and spectators alike.

Hey, I earned that beer!

 

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The Upstate Young Marines (Youth Organization) operating a Mud Run for the smaller ones.  (They said I was short enough for the course but was disqualified due to my age.)

 

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Rebecca ran so hard her soles fell off! Now that girl’s got drive!

 

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My run is done, now time for fun!

 

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The Goodwill Mud Run, like every other obstacle course run, is not only a fun and rewarding experience for its participants. These events raise lots of money for charity and are often boosted by sponsors within the local community.

 

My next planned event is the Navy Seal’s BattleFrog run in Atlanta, May 2015.  Yeah, wish me luck because this old man needs it! I’m taking the whole family out on this one, so you’d better come back and see the results! In the meantime, get off that couch and find a fitness adventure of your own. When you do, be sure tell us all about it in the comments section below.

Happy Travels,

Big John

 

 

 

 

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