CONYERS –A battle to crown the fittest of the fit will wage next weekend in Conyers as close to 4,000 racers challenge themselves at the Spartan Race.
Sponsored by Reebok, the competition is known as one of the world’s foremost obstacle race courses which extends anywhere from three to twelve miles and includes over 20 obstacle stunts to test a racer’s mental and physical strengths.
Spartans can compete at two levels. The Super category has 24 to 29 obstacles and stretches between eight to 10 miles; the Sprint division is spread over three to five miles and has 20 to 23 obstacles.
According to its website, Spartan Race aims to promote “healthy living and tremendous athletic ability,” and create “a unique culture and community of athletes working together to overcome any, and every, obstacle.”
Some of the physical challenges placed between the start and finish line include elements like barbed wire crawl, rope climb, carrying sandbags, fire jump, tire drag, wall jump etc.
According to race director Vinny Cappadora, some obstacles are not revealed to surprise the racers. The terrain of the course – whether it will be flat or hilly – is also kept under the wraps.
Cappadora says that they usually see three tiers of participants at the Spartan Races. The first group can be described as “professional racers” who train all year long to compete in similar programs across the country and the world and make a living out of it.
The second group includes “semi-pro” athletes who have other jobs, but are dedicated to competing when feasible. The third group of racers encompasses individuals who dare themselves to go beyond their regular routines and attempt a new and extreme regiment.
“To me personally, my favorite part is watching the people who are trying to challenge themselves and pushing themselves one step further,” Cappadora said. “To prove to themselves that they can do something even they didn’t think they could do is hands down my favorite.”
The elite men and women categories will be the first to run and will also receive cash prizes. The awards for the top three positions in each category are $500, $200 and $100 respectively.
All finishers will receive a medal, a t-shirt, a professional photo, snacks and bragging rights at the end of the race.
Spartan Race has over one million global participants/ The race began in 2010 in Vermont and has expanded to over 25 countries since then.
The race has also been picked up as a television series by NBC sports. It is called “Spartan: Ultimate Team Challenge.” Teams of five compete to win $250,000 on the show.
Registration is available until the day of the race at 5:30 a.m. Elite men heats begin at 7:30 a.m. followed by the women at 7:45 a.m. Other heats will continue throughout the day until the last one which starts at 1:30 p.m.
The race will be held on Saturday, Dec. 3 for the Super level and on Sunday, Dec, 4 for the Sprint level at the Georgia International Horse Park. A one-mile and a one-and-a-half-mile race for kids will also be hosted on both days.