Splitsider

Monday, January 6th, 2014

Upcoming Obstacle Races, by Alex Pearson

Mark your calendars, runners. Don’t miss out on the newest, most challenging, and inventive races yet.

The Urban Obstacler: Running eight miles is hard enough, but now throw in simulated real-life automobile traffic, startled pedestrians, furious outdoor vendors, unfazed homeless people, and a completely unmarked course. And while we don’t have actors dressed up as zombies chasing you, watch out for our very convincing police officers trying to stop you to ask about permits. Just remember, no matter what happens, don’t give them any information about to whom you paid your entry fee. That is automatic disqualification!

The Quicksand Scamper: 200 of the area’s most adventurous runners; 10 kilometers of the most rugged trail; dozens of the toughest quicksand pits; and one very frantic volunteer with a fraying rope that is simply too short. Whatever you do, keep running. Except in the quicksand. Then, whatever you do, stop running. You will sink like a stone. If you're unsure if it's quicksand or not, run a few miles and see how much you sink.

The Lead Lap: Sure, we may not be the first or longest race to dump paint on the competitors, but what we lack in distance, we easily make up in acute toxicity.

The Inferno: Sweat pours down your face. You can barely see your eyes are watering so badly. And that’s just standing on the starting linebefore beginning The Inferno. You still have to run all those miles, dig all those ditches, and dump all that water. Sometimes it isn’t about who wins and who loses; it’s about finishing the race, and most importantly, containing the fire. Until the state can once again afford a trained crew, we are depending on you to pay us to do this.

The Photoshop Five-Miler: Think you have what it takes to run five miles through some of nature’s most challenging elements and then show your Facebook friends just how tough you are? Well, we are strictly enforcing a no outside cameras rule and then posting photos all over the internet of you trailing a gawky pre-teen girl wearing a back brace and roller skates.

The Beast Bolt: So you’ve proven you can run with the pack, huh? How about we make that pack a little more… wild? Lions, tigers, and bears, oh my, as well as the world’s saddest looking elephant and two rare pandas who simply refuse to mate, running right there with you through a zoo with all the cages left open.

The Okayama Challenge: It may sound like any other Japanese 5K, but whoever wins this one will be named the sole heir to mysterious dying billionaire Hayato Okayama’s entire fortune. How much money does Okayama have exactly? Well, he's a billionaire so probably at least a billion. And at least enough to literally buy the suspension of all laws after the first 60 seconds of the race. How did Okayama make his fortune? By being the leading producer of the world’s most innovative and brutal hand-to-hand combat weapons.

Alex Pearson is a writer from North Carolina. So if Alex Pearson from South Carolina says that he wrote this, he's lying.

The Humor Section features a piece of original humor writing each week. To submit, send an email to Brian Boone.