The Zombies Got Me

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The Zombie Run is easily, hands down, the most fun race I’ve ever participated in. I had an absolute  BLAST this past Saturday running the race with my brother, Derek (pictured above), and friend, Tom.

We ran from zombies, belly flopped into a puddle of mud (a race worker dared us… and agreed to give us an extra flag… so we did it), front flipped into a “blood bath,” avoided getting electric shocks (more specifically I avoided getting shocked… Derek and Tom weren’t as stealthy), and received small battle wounds to show off. I’m telling you… best. race. ever. 

Have you never heard of the zombie run?!?!  Take a second to watch this video —-> WATCH ME <—- It almost does the race justice, but it’s 20348019480 times more fun. If you don’t feel like watching it, no worries I’m going to explain the race anyways (but really, watch the video). 

So here’s how it works…. you are given three “lives”, which are essentially three flag football flags that you wear on a belt around your waist. You are on a mission to get through the 3.1 mile course which contains zombies (obviously) and various obstacles without losing all of your flags.

If you make it through the race without losing all of your flags than you are a “survivor” or… if your name is Melissa and you lose all three of your flags due to crazy fast vicious zombies… you are “infected.” No matter when you lose your last flag, you are still eligible to complete the 5K and are chased/participate in obstacles. 

I lost my last flag with about a quarter mile left in the race, but am proud to say I did the run without curling up in the fetal position in the woods from exhaustion midrace. You see, I went in with the mindset that I was going to run the whole course… jokes. I even looked on at the running heat ahead of me wondering why some people were walking. I was oh so naive, I just didn’t know yet…

Although its a 5K, you don’t run the entire race (well I guess if you are the Hulk or completely use to running from Zombies… maybe you do). Instead, you go through chunks of the course that are zombie-free and obstacle-free where you walk, regroup, and catch your breath. I definitely wasn’t use to the on-and-off sprinting or doing obstacles mid-run, but that’s what made it even more fun. Ain’t nothing better than a challenge!

You may be wondering… who are these zombies? They are volunteers who go through a professional zombie makeover booth before the race. And these zombies are no joke. They will growl at you, stare at you blankly, and catch you off guard screaming. It has to be just as much fun to be a zombie as it is to be a runner. You could see the zombies’ proudly displaying his or her stockpiles  of captured flags after the race. I must say, I wouldn’t mind being a zombie next year, but then again… I want to run it again to earn that “survivor” status. 

But wait, let’s not forget about the obstacles! Every race has a different combination of obstacles. The Maryland version had a blood pit, smoke house, more mud related obstacles than one can list, and barrels of hay to jump over. Not to mention the course was really a motocross track, and therefore was neither flat nor smooth. My favorite obstacle was doing an army crawl through the mud underneath wooden planks, followed by a belly flop into a pond-like body of water, and then finishing the obstacle course army crawl under more wooden planks. 

If you haven’t figured it out yet, you don’t stay very clean during this race. There are showers provided at the end to help you rinse off before you start enjoying all the post-race festivities. 

This all-day fun party is called the Apocalypse Party. It’s where you check out vendors that are in attendance, eat food, pick up your complimentary beer, and show off your medal. There is a DJ playing music and getting the crowd involved. You aren’t done with the Zombie Run when you finish the race, but when you decide to go home. 

Overall, I am extremely satisfied with my experience. The race happens all over the USA and costs somewhere between $70 – $100 depending on how early/late you sign up.You can go to http://www.runforyourlives.com if you are interested. 

Lastly, besides having a kick-ass time, I completed a training run for my half marathon. It just goes to show that you can make training more than running the same route for 12 weeks. 

Let me know if you have questions… or if there is anything you want me to blog about! 

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