For two years now, I have been dreaming about doing the Metro Tek race in Kalamazoo, MI. Its described as an adventure race offering the best wilderness and urban combo. Bike, trek, orienteering, ropes, paddle, and surprise elements. There is no course to learn and it takes nearly 10 hours to finish it. I know it is about 50 miles of biking, running, and canoeing.
Signups end next week. It is time to take the heat or get out of the kitchen. It appears that my teammate and I can not make up our minds as to whether we should do it or not.
So here’s a list of PROS and CONS for the Metro Trek:
1. My 21 speed mountain bike has only two functional speeds. I’ve never had it serviced in the 12 years I’ve owned it. Besides, I suspect even Walmart carries higher quality bikes than what I have.
2. I don’t own biking clothes. 35 +/- miles of biking in one day is gonna hurt. A lot.
3. I can’t run in regular shoes and VFFs aren’t that fun to bike in. Not 35 some miles, that is.
4. As I explained above, I have a bike that is primarily for recreational use. If I get a flat tire, I just wait until my husband has time to fix it. They want me to carry a spare tire and a CO2 cartridge. Wouldn’t a bottle of oxygen be better? I mean, I’m sure I’m going to be pretty close to fainting from pain by then.
5. I had never heard of orienteering before this race. Neither one of us owns a compass and I’ve never read a topographical map. I’m afraid I might actually get lost in the woods. (what if I pass out from hypothermia and they see that my shorts have a gigantic hole!)(oops, see #8)
6. You need a backpack to carry race and emergency related items. The only backpacks I have in my house were formerly owned by my kids. Can you see me on a serious adventure race with Batman on my back? Maybe a Jedi backpack would be better so that I have the force with me?
7. They recommend protective (sunglasses) eye wear. I did actually buy a pair of sunglasses this summer. They are the highly fashionable bug-eyed look that all the hot ladies are wearing. I’m sure they’ll go well with my VFFs and Batman backpack.
8. I do own a pair of running shorts. But, they have a gigantic hole in the crotch that gets caught on the seat whenever I get on my bike. (Indecent exposure is not an issue since the shorts have inner panties)
9. There’s a scouting hike that I should attend as the Pack Leader and mother of two great boys. (I don’t want to be the Pack Leader, mind you, I just am. For now, I hope)
10. The cost. You have to love a sport that as you get further into it, it actually costs you less money. With barefoot running, I don’t even need to spend money on shoes! (and I’m STILL wearing those runner shorts with the disappearing crotch).
The fees for this adventure race are several times more than I usually pay for a race. It’s justified considering they supply the canoe and the life jacket. But, I also live out of state so it will cost me gas money to get to the race. If I even considered improving some of the state of affairs mentioned above, you’re talking cha-Ching for some local stores.
Let’s not forget that a trip to Kalamazoo is not complete without a trip to Bell’s Eccentric Cafe for a Best Brown Ale or Oarsman Ale. Or, perhaps, I’d take my goddaughter out for ice cream at Plainwell Ice Cream.
Yeah, my budget for the rest of the year with an ocular prosthesis on the horizon really can’t handle that kind of impact.
1. I really want to do it.
After making that list I realize that it is 10 to 1 indicating that instead of being an adventure seeker, I’m just a poser with kids and sunglasses. (wearing shorts with holes)
Maybe next year? Yeah right!