Training With Weight

Two workouts to prep for race day “carries”

Training With Weight - Two workouts to prep for race day “carries”
Obstacle course racing incorporates traditional trail running elements with unique obstacles to crawl, climb and jump over and under. In addition, obstacle course racing incorporates “carrying.” Thus, you not only need a strong lower body and the ability to run a 5K or more, but you also need strength to carry strange objects while doing so.

Training With Weight - Two workouts to prep for race day “carries”The most common of object that is carried in races is the sandbag. Sandbags can range in weight from about 10 pounds to 50 pounds. The most common weight for women is about 25 pounds. Working with the weight is something you will definitely want to practice prior to race day, as it can either slow you down or give you a huge advantage over the rest of the racers.

How To Incorporate Weight Into Your Race Training

Workout 1 – The Weighted Walk
Training With Weight - Two workouts to prep for race day “carries”The first workout to help you practice for the sandbag (or other odd object) carries is to incorporate a moderate weight (10-20lb) sandbag into one workout per week. Start off walking with the additional weight on the road or trail for 1-2 miles. This will help you build endurance while at the same time work your upper body.

Workout 2 – The Total Body Slam

The second workout is a variation of the first and is guaranteed to be a full body challenge! Pick a 1-2 mile trail (you will want to be on a trail). For the duration of the hike, you will pick up and throw a sandbag (10-20lbs) in front of you. Walk to where the sandbag drops, pick it up and through it in front of you again. Continue this for the 1-2 mile trail. You might get a few strange looks, but the repeated motion will help you gain both strength and endurance.

Finding A Training Weight

The most durable sandbags on the market are the Hyperwear Sandbells; however, you can also make your own sandbag with a few items from the local hardware store. In a pinch, you can just grab yourself a rock on the trail and make friends with it for a run or two. However you choose to add the weight for your workout, you will be thankful for the practice on race day.

That’s the dirt for this week! Next week we start to take a look into some of the different race organizers to help you find the best race for you!

Margaret Schlachter

Margaret Schlachter, the first professional female obstacle course racer, is a top ranked athlete in the Reebok Spartan Race series. She is also an endurance athlete specializing in ultra trail running races, a Spartan SGX Coach, and a CrossFit Level 1 Trainer. She founded, a leading source for all things obstacle course racing and endurance sports. For more information on Margaret, her upcoming book and online coaching services.

Margaret's book "Obstacle Race Training: How to Beat any Course, Compete Like a Champion and Change Your Life" is available for PRE-SALE! Click HERE to reserve your copy.

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