6 Tips to Make Your First Spartan Race Awesome

One Fit Mother Heather Valentine Spartan RaceLooking to do your first Spartan Race? Who knows…maybe you will end up hooked like me. Seldom in our every day lives do we have many opportunities to get outside of our comfort zones. The course is that place – physical challenges in many forms that allow us a chance to find out how truly capable our minds and bodies can be. Call it exercising the monkey brain (my husband) or challenging your inner athlete (me) whatever the case, thank you Spartan. So are you ready? Check out these 6 tips to make the most out of race day.


Your race is your race

The most important thing to keep in mind in an Open Heat: After signing up the first time I read all the rules and then to my surprise I watched people break them! **GASP** You know what? That’s ok. It’s not an Elite or Competitive Heat. So, the quicker I came to terms with this mantra – say it with me “my race is my race, my race is my race” – the less I cared about others and the more I focused on my own race and had fun. And, just for the record,  my personal race code (or competitiveness perhaps) is such that I do follow Official Rules, Guidelines and Penalties for Spartan Race Obstacles. Specifically, if I fail to complete an obstacle I do my 30 burpee penalty. And I did 150 of them my first time. Speaking of burpees….

Burpees are not a bad thing

You are no more of an athlete if you race burpee free and no less of one if you do them. You will be way less frustrated and fatigued at the end without them but no less of an athlete. Changing my mindset on this continues to make a huge difference for me. If you’re unable to complete an obstacle it simply shows you new challenges to work towards for your next race. For first timers, think slow obstacles or fast burprees. Don’t get frustrated. Be smart and be patient.

You must properly prepare

There just isn’t a substitute for consistent and specific training. Be smart and patient. Honestly, I didn’t train as diligently or as consistently as my husband did for our last race and it showed. Hard work and cardio prep always pays off and will be reflected in surprising ways on the course.

Mindset determines success or failure

After you have done your best to prepare and train it is then time to focus and trust yourself on race day.  Tell yourself you can. It’s sounds so cliché and simple. But it was crazy to watch people who say they can’t manifest it and same goes with the ones who make that inner dialogue positive. Use your mind to break that race up into manageable pieces and get to work grinding and chipping away. This is your chance to be so in the moment and present. You get to focus on that one thing right in front of you and do your absolute best to conquer it.


The Spartan community is incredibly helpful and encouraging. It’s a we’re all in this together kinda feeling. So, if you need help to conquer that wall ask a fellow racer. I see people helping people all over the place and that is something I truly love about the sport. There was a girl at the last race who was stuck on the monkey bars and so many people were yelling and encouraging her to hang on and keep trying. And she did it. Lots of cheers and applause. I honestly believe that was the boost she needed to make it through.

Have fun

Last but not least have fun and enjoy the journey. Don’t forget to smile for the camera at least once and cross that finish line with pride.One Fit Mother Heather Valentine Spartan


I’ll be on the courses this year and would love to see you out there – go here to check out venues, schedules and pricing and use code ATHLINKS2017 for up to 45% off race prices!  Let me know where it takes you. AROO!

About Heather Valentine

Heather Valentine is a National Academy of Sports Medicine Certified Personal Trainer and Nutritionist who believes in building your best body from the inside out.

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