It was called the Badass Babes Light. A GoRuck event.
The title sounded interesting. But after reading the description, I definitely wasn’t going to do it.
Two hours. Unknown physical challenges. All under the weight of a ruck.
Not doing it.
Team work with no one I knew.
Nope. Nope. Nope.
The hour came, and a handful of the gals I just met threw their packs on and looked at me…”are you coming or what?”
And so it began.
Me and 93 of my newest gal pals corralled in a large field. A woman stood in front of us. It was her job to warm us up for the challenges / adventures to come.
50-40-30-20-10 she said.
50 jumps over your pack
40 pack deadlifts
30 reverse lunges (pack on your back, of course)
20 weighted air squats
10 burpees with a jump over your pack.
Oh, and when you’re done, you can either sit in a pack-on full squat hold, or a pack-on plank.
I looked around. No one to complain to. Just do it. But if this was the WARM UP, I had a strong sense of the madness to come. I seriously thought about just walking away. No one was there to stop me. Who would know?
But I just decided to stick it out a little bit longer.
What followed was a 1.5-hour tour de force of strenuous exercise. 60-pound sandbag suitcase carries in a circle, pack-on pushups, more burpees. Clip the bags together and carry it with all your fellow badass babes in a line. Pick it up, put it down, pass it one way, pass it back. Put the sandbags down. Step ups on a long local bench with your pack on. Up, down, up, down. Then the 5-gallon buckets come out. The leaders each fill one with the salt water in the canal behind us. They come back up to the long line of babes and start picking people off by the bucketful as they step up, down, up, down. Thankfully it was hot as heck. But shouting encouragements to others when an unexpected dump came left me with a literal bad taste in my mouth.
More walking with the clipped sandbags, back to the original corral. Then, we had to lift and toss the bags, all 25-30 of them, around a circular path. 90 plus women, 30 bags, so we were taking turns with the tosses. This had to be my favorite part. I love my sandbag at home, which isn’t quite so heavy but I do know how to clean it to my chest and launch it. This made me feel so strong and like I contributed. Finally, back to a big circle with more sandbag throws and pushups with pack.
I forgot what may have been the hardest part for some, which happened at the very beginning, even before the warm up. All this was done with nothing to hold back your hair. I have short hair and had nothing holding it back anyway so when they told everyone at the beginning to take their hair down I just stood there. As you’ll see on the patch we earned, the badass babe has long flowing locks so the two dudes in charge said it’s a rule to have our hair down. I wondered for a moment if that meant I wasn’t woman enough. Then I decided I didn’t care what their narrow definition of femininity was anyway. What would three men know about that? Not much. Nothing that mattered to me, at least.
30 minutes of yoga and cool down and I earned my patch for my ruck. I am a total patch chaser and I knew what it meant. All the Street Parking Women who completed it took a group pic, but otherwise there was no evidence it happened. I was too busy suffering to grab a photo. I do have the patch, of course. Another effort and experience for the books. I didn’t give up.