Leg 3 Complete – Photo by Tezza Orlanda
Leg 3: No Turning Back – Nuvali (Pre Race) – October 6, 2012
The Immuvit Fearless Challenge was really a journey. It started with a 10K obstacle run which had a 20 foot mud wall, log hurdles, military wall, fire jump among others along the slippery trails of La Mesa. The challenge was difficult but this one’s a NO SURRENDER race so that’s a check for my first trail run. I had tons of excuses not to join Leg 2 but since the event was titled NO EXCUSES, I went on to join and and do those repetitions of Rip 60 Pull Ups, Tire Flips, Swipe Push Ups, Tire Pull, 40 pounds lunges and burpees and finishing everything in 10 minutes. I was even able to join 16.8K Adidas KOTR the next day. It’s time for leg 3 and as the event title goes, there’s NO TURNING BACK now.
Race Route and Elevation
Race starts at Nuvali Main Road and leads you to the first two obstacle within the first kilometer which is a fire jump and a 50 feet oil wall. The race then moves to an descending trail for about a two kilometers going into the next two obstacles which is tire mountain and tire skips covering an elevation of 30 meters before the trail moves into a series of uphills and downhills for the fourth kilometer. The trails become endless as you get three more kilometer of slippery ascending trail with a climb of about 40 meters. The trail ends with another obstacle which is the log hurdles. The race then moves out of the trails for about a kilometer as you get back to Nuvali Main Road wherein you have to get to another obstacle which carrying sand bags for about 500 meters.
At kilometer 8, you enter the other side of Nuvali, which was a more slippery set of trails covering another 4 kilometer of endless trail this time with a slow descent of about 40 meters and ends with the next obstacle which is a garter maze. The race moves back to the main road where you climb to the the round about and then leads you to a steep descent of another 20 meters to the next obstacle which is the River crossing at the 13th Kilometer. The river crossing covers around 800 meter to a kilometer. At kilometer 14, you start with the biggest climb of the race which is about 60 meters worth of elevation distributed over a kilometer and a half before hitting the next two obstacles which is a mud crawl and crossing a swamp which is chest deep. Finally, you get to do a descending trail over the final two kilometers which includes the dreaded military wall, the soothing ice pool and one last fire jump to the finish line.
This is IT… NO TURNING BACK – Photo by Patrick Dilla of D3finity
It was festive at the start of the run notwithstanding that the most challenging 16 kilometers is upon us. NO TURNING BACK so we might as well enjoy the ride. A lot of the people here also was part of the previous legs. It was nice meeting fellow runners, run bloggers and photographers, D3finity, Immuvit and Without Limits people who by now are friends and familiar faces because of the three legs of the Fearless Challenge.
Class Picture in 1, 2, 3… Click – Photo by Patrick Dilla of D3finity
I was running as part of the last wave of runners along with Team Total Fitness with a take off time at around 7 am. Since James and Rojan were such speedster, I requested them to pace with me until we get past the oil wall which was said to be a tough obstacle and may require people helping each other. Since it was just the second obstacle, it wouldn’t it so much of there time nor eat out too much of their energy just keeping pace with them. At gun start we went on smoothly to the fire jump and towards the oil wall. 50 foot high oil wall wherein you have to rely on your upper body strength as your legs wouldn’t help much due to the slippery surface. To my surprise, I did the oil wall at my first try and so after that I went on at my pace and James and Rojan went on super speed mode.
3 Legs of Fearless Challenge With Team Total Fitness Speedsters Rojan and James – Photo by Tezza Orlanda
Up next was a 2 kilometer of descending road and trails with tire mountain and tire skip in between. Not much problem with the tire mountain though you have to do it fast or else you’ll end up sliding in the tire holes. The tire skip was midway the third kilometer and was a bit more difficult than the tire skip in La Mesa as this one had uneven sizes. After the tire skip, the trail goes on unlimited mode as running solo and the unforgiving heat has made the next 2-3 kilometers the longest I’ve ever felt. Every time I saw a marshal, I would ask if there was an obstacle nearby just to take my mind of the trail. It can get crazy though as you get to hear some movements in the leaves.
Tire Jump – Photo from Coach Jim Saret Facebook page
After enduring this, I finally saw the end of it in the form of log hurdles. Not that I was looking forward to log hurdles as in the past I had difficulty with the larger hurdles and sometimes jumping causes a sting in my quads. I used a different approach this time as I used my upper body to lift myself up to cross the hurdles. Now back to solid grounds, the next obstacle was a sand bag which I first thought I had to carry just in the u-turn slot but it turned out, you had to carry it for around 500 meters going to the second part of the race.
Tired by Glad to See Some Runners After 13K Running Solo – Photo by RJ Knight Runner
The race then shifts to the other side of Nuvali and if the two kilometers felt endless, up next is four kilometers worth of trail and it was more slippery at this side. I had to walk on the slippery part. I figured if I had no chance of seeing people until the end of the race, I might as well try to finish it faster so went on at a faster pace. After another lifetime in this trails, the exit led me to a garter maze and finally saw some people. I dashed towards the race and finally caught up with some runners from earlier waves and Coach Jim Saret before entering the river crossing obstacle. After 13 kilometers of running solo, it was nice to finally see some fresh set of runners.
River Walk – Photo by RJ Knight Runner
The river walk was exhausting yet was really fun as you get to go against the tide and stone obstacles along the way. After about 800 meter to a kilometer worth of rivers and tides, I finally saw the end of the river. Had to clean my shoes from the mud and sands that accumulated inside before I went on with the race. Leaving the river was a challenge as you had to climb a wall using a rope. After reaching solid ground again, it goes back to another uphill climb. I realized that even just walking against the tide is as exhausting as running so went on to brisk walk here towards the next kilometer en route to the next obstacle which was a mud crawl and going through a swamp which is chest deep.
Run Franckee Run – Photo by Tezza Orlanda
It then leads to another set of slippery trails and uphill climbs and upon reaching the road again I felt my GPS watch beep that it’s the 16th kilometer but instead of a finish line in sight, I saw a sign that said, turn left. I caught up with more runners here and knowing that even if its longer than the 16K trail run, I had a shot at finishing this and so I preserved my legs for the biggest obstacle I consider in this race – The Military Wall. The Military Wall was a bit special to me because during the last military wall, I ended up enduring my tail bone after a bad fall. This time it was a lot tougher as it’s almost a 90 decree incline, about twice the height of the previous one and I’ve been seeing runners ahead of me having difficulty. Upon my turn, I pulled the rope lifted myself up and a few steps I was up there. Now, the tough part as I wouldn’t want to go to another round of injury so I slid sideways so I can control my fall which worked well.
The Road to the Finish Line – Photo by Tezza Orlanda
I was then on my way to finish the race which had about more than a kilometer to go. I crawled into an ice pool, which was really refreshing and went on to the finish line where I took my last fire jump and completed the whole 18K of a 16K trail race. It’s really difficult having an exact trail distance so even if it went on longer, I did have a lot of fun and satisfaction. This was indeed the toughest of the Immuvit Fearless Challenge Trilogy and I’m glad I’ve done all three legs.
Call Me Fearless
I entered the Immuvit Fearless Challenge trilogy unsure if I can finish any of it. Sure, I’ve been running for the past two years but going over hurdles, climbing walls, jumping over fires, lifting weights, doing core exercises were not the things I commonly do or think I could do. I’ve never even done a full trail run before this one. As one obstacle came after another, I just went on trying and ended up successful. I can now say I’m FEARLESS and can’t wait to get my hands on the loyalty shirt for finishing all three legs. It was designed to be an intimate run and catered to runners and enthusiasts looking for a different challenge and this was one indeed. Congratulations to Immuvit, Coach Jim Saret and Without Limits for coming out with this concept. Just so you know, I’m ready for LEG 4 just in case you’re still game for another round.
Team Total Fitness
Glad to complete all three legs with Team Total Fitness Teammates James and Rojan -Photo by Tezza Orlanda