May 1
In my case she didn’t believe she could, but she still did. As I’m writing this my shoulders ache, my arms feel like I’ve been lifting weights for 24hrs straight, I’m covered in cuts, grazes and bruises and, despite 2 baths and several showers, my toenails look like I’ve had an attractive mud coloured pedicure. I also can’t keep the stupid grin off my face. Why? Because I did the Yorkshire Warrior and not only did I survive it but I even enjoyed (bits of!) it too.

She didn’t believe she could 

If you’ve not heard of it, Yorkshire Warrior is an obstacle course or mud run as they’re sometimes called. Jennie initially suggested back in February that a team of us Set U Free crew could do it together. My first reaction was to refuse point blank. I wouldn’t be able to do it, I couldn’t run 5 miles, I’d hold the rest of the team up, I’d injure myself, or, even worse, someone else if I fell on top of them. Oh and the thought of being cold, wet and muddy horrified me. Gradually Jennie persuaded me I could do it. She assured me she wouldn’t have asked me if she wasn’t confident I could do it. Plus every time I came up with a reason why I couldn’t do it she had a reason why I could, so eventually I gave in and said I would.

Deep down I still didn’t believe I could actually do it, but I put a brave face on, told everyone it would be good training for my triathlon and secretly plotted excuses to get out of it. It genuinely is no exaggeration to say I was more worried about doing the Yorkshire Warrior than I am the triathlon (apart from possibly the wetsuit of course!) I felt physically sick every time I thought about it and resorted to just trying to forget it was even happening.

May 2

She started to imagine she could 

Then Jennie put some training sessions together for us all, and it really helped. We got to know each other as a team and I started to get a better understanding of what the obstacles would be like. After losing my trainer in knee deep mud and having to retrieve it barefoot, I even overcame my horror of getting muddy. I was still terrified but Jennie’s assurances that we’d start and finish as team, that we’d go at the pace of the slowest team member (in my head I knew that was me) and her promise that we wouldn’t run all 5miles and we would walk as needed, meant I wasn’t so terrified that I didn’t turn up on the day.

the set U free crew working together to get everyone through the tubes (note everyone waiting in the cold muddy water to help each other)

the set U free crew working together to get everyone through the tubes (note everyone waiting in the cold muddy water to help each other)

She still didn’t believe, but she did 

Despite thinking I wouldn’t be able to do any of the obstacles, I was actually fine with most of them. Wading through chest deep cold water didn’t bother me, crawling under electrified nets and backwards through small pipes was not a problem, even the 700m long pitch black tunnel that was knee deep in icy water was OK. I didn’t like most of the climbing obstacles, especially the ones like walls where I had to climb over something (as opposed to climb up, walk along a platform or something and then climb down the other side) but with a bit of moral support from the team (and sometimes physical support too!) I made it.

YW2

This was higher and scarier than it looks. The last obstacle, so we were tired and fed up, we still worked as a team

 

She believed she could, so she did 

It’s given me a huge confidence boost for my triathlon next month, if I can get round the Yorkshire Warrior, jog most of the way and not actually collapse then I’m reasonably confident I can get round the triathlon. The absolute best things though are that we all got round as a team, we worked really well together, helping each other with different things as it was needed, so I’ve made a whole bunch of new friends, I got a free Yorkshire Warrior T shirt, and we raised over £1200 for a Leeds Women’s Aid. No bad for a Saturday morning

YW3

set U free crew, still together. Our t-shirts said it all; alone we are strong, together we are stronger

 

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Read Marias story here, and catch up on last months update. 

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