If you are reading this post you may already know what a Spartan Race is but just in case, let us explain. A spartan race consists of a series of obstacle based races that vary in difficulty and distance. The Spartan series includes five races including the Spartan Sprint (20+ obstacles over 3+ miles), the Super Spartan (25+ obstacles over 8+ miles), Spartan Beast (30+ obstacles over 13+ miles), the Ultra Beast (60+ obstacles over 26+ miles) and a special military series with an obstacle course designed by the US military. In addition to these five races, there are also various winter and team events.
If wondering about the different obstacles involved in each race there are too many to list, but we will provide a few examples. Obstacles often include activities such as barbed wire crawls, fire jumps, bucket carries, wall and mud crawling. If a participant fails to adequately complete any of the given obstacles, they must pay a penalty and complete 30 burpees before moving on to the next portion of the race.
For those interested in participating in a Spartan event, you may find yourself wondering how to train for the Spartan race? The answer to this question will depend on your physical condition and the race you elect to participate in.
Spartan Race Training
To keep things fresh for participants, race coordinators never release the course map before the competition. As a result, participants never know what to expect so there is no way to know exactly how you should prepare. The best strategy is to develop a training plan that helps prepare you for anything. The obstacles in Spartan races test your endurance, body strength (upper and lower) and speed so if you want to do well and succeed in the race, it is best to focus on all of these aspects when participating in Spartan race training. Another helpful tip is to practice and perfect the burpee. Don’t forget that if you fail to complete one of the obstacles, you will be responsible for doing 30 burpees before continuing with the race.
To help you achieve the best time on Spartan race day, it is highly recommended that you focus on the following training components.
Inclines and Intervals
When running, it is important to ensure you are challenging yourself with various inclines. It is important to include hill workouts at least one time per week. Running up hills will help prepare your body for running up the steep inclines that are often found between obstacles.
In addition to hill training, it is important to include sprints and an interval workout each week. If wondering how doing intervals will help, they will allow for you to regain energy more quickly when between obstacles and/or hills in the race.
It is true that some of the Spartan races are only 3-4 miles. However, that doesn’t mean that is all you have to run to be fully prepared for this race. This is because these races have a harsh terrain so to better prepare, you are going to want to get comfortable running further than the distance of the race. The longer the distances you can run, the more prepared you will be for this race so remember to focus on your stamina and endurance when training for a Spartan event. To help with this, it is recommended to do at least one long distance run each week when training.
Spartan obstacles require great strength so to properly prepare, it is important to work on both your upper and lower body strength. If looking for a baseline, you should be able to do push-ups, pull-ups and squats. It is also recommended that participants have experience climbing walls and being able to cross a set of monkey bars. Another helpful suggestion is to participate in plyometrics, which is more commonly referred to as “jump training.” This will serve as a significant advantage for any obstacles involving jumping exercises.
An important part of the training that participants often neglect is rest! If you wish to improve your fitness, prevent injuries and get the best results, you must allow your body to have time to make the necessary adjustments and repairs between workouts. It is recommended that during Spartan training, you provide your body with 1 to 2 full days of rest each week.
If you follow all of these Spartan training tips, you should be prepared come race day.
If you live in the Beaverton, Oregon area and are interested in hiring a personal trainer to assist you with Spartan race training, contact Fit Academy today!
Call (971) 371-3666.