The OCR World Championships were held at Blue Mountains, Ont. this year. At Worlds they do staggered start waves throughout the day starting with the pros at 8am and ending with Journeyman at 2:30pm. This staggered start was very strange for many of us who usually race first thing in the morning. My age group wave was 11:30 EST
I was fortunate enough to stay with a bunch of Ultra Beast friends in a condo right in the heart of the village. This provided convenience to the venue, the shops and the food.
We awoke in the morning and I had my regular breakfast of Oatmeal & green tea. Then a few of us went to watch the Pro division head out onto the course.
In the athlete corral the men awaited their start. Coach Pain (formerly from Battlefrog) was there to pump us up. He had a different speech for every group. This man is an amazing motivator and made me tear up several times throughout the morning. My favourite were the Pro Woman’s and Men’s Masters speeches although I wasn’t able to hear them all as I spent a good 3hrs 50 minutes out on the course. It was a 15km course with 45+ challenging obstacles many of which I’d never even seen, let alone tried. After standing by the Platinum rig for almost 2 hours waiting for our pro friends to come through and cheering everyone on, MY race start was approaching and now I had to start thinking of my own race. Kyla and I headed back to our room so I could prepare for the race. With such a weird start time I had only eaten a cup of yogurt and a banana as my lunch before starting and had packed water, candies, mustard and a GU into my hydration pack (I seriously underestimated the calorie deficit I would have on course).
I changed into my team Canada gear and went down to the bag check area. After my back was secured I entered the athletes lounge only to find that all the women in my division had already gone out into the start corral. I immediately went out through the doors running down the corral yelling at the volunteer that I needed my band to start (the band is required to race and only given up if you can’t complete an obstacle) Essentially I missed Coach Payne speech for my age group and was immediately starting the race upon my arrival. Nothing like going in cold and frantic to the biggest race of my life.
My Proud moments: conquering Dragons back without hesitation, making it up the quarter pipe, completing pipe dream, climbing endless walls, trying everything even when scared or hurting (there was a lot of hurting)
Regrets: not completing Platinum rig(I left my band there with many others),not trying the Warped wall a second time, not having gloves to save my hands (ouch), not having salt pills/electrolytes to prevent serious muscle cramps, being too tired to get up the last 2 ft of the rope climb
Note to self: even though it’s only 15 K you need more nutrition than jolly rancher’s and one GU pack.
Favourite moments: making a new friend Chelsea and running the whole race with her, cheering each other on at the obstacles, the view from the top of the mountain. The winding single track trails through the woods that led us up, up, up, down and then up again (at least 5 good climbs) I wish I had a camera then because the view of the Georgian bay was absolutely breathtaking. if I didn’t know better I would say it was the ocean because you could see no end but I’m told it was Lake Huron.
Hardest obstacles: platinum rig, low rig (wtf was that?), urban sky, stairway to heaven (think devil steps from Ninja warrior) 50lb wreck bag carry in the hot sun (20C) and warped wall.
Worst moments: failing obstacles, losing my band 😞 of course, my legs cramping and forcing me into a walk many times, ripping my hands open on the monkey bars (therefore making the last few grip obstacles painful and impossible), and the horrendous cramping of my calf on the Irish table that forced me to fall onto my back and I couldn’t move for a good couple of minutes. Thanks to the volunteer who advised me to drink more water, took care of me until I could walk and Chelsea who refused to leave me❤️. After that there were a string of grip obstacles that I’d never tried and could barely hang on due to my hands being ripped apart. I was feeling tired and defeated but was never willing to give up. Chelsea and I finished the race with a unison run up the slippery wall (3-2-1 go) and crossed the finish line together. Victory!!!
I had competed in World Championships and completed one of the hardest races of my life!
A few months ago it was just a far fetched dream of mine to compete in this race. None of which could have been possible without the love and encouragement of my family and friends and the support and belief of my Sponsors WEphysio Performance and Wellness, Speedy Collision West Edmonton and Body Tech Therapeutic Massage Inc. I truly thank you from the bottom of my heart. The rumour is that OCRWC will be back at Blue Mountains next year and I’d love a chance to come back smarter and stronger than ever.