Between a Rock & a Hard Place – Book Review

A very brief book review of “Between a Rock & a Hard Place” by Aron Ralston.

This is a very early attempt at writing book reviews. It’s still a work in progress.

Aron is very descriptive of the landscape. He describes every single detail of the trails, rocks, cliffs, mountains and scenery. I recommend reading the definition part of the appendix before beginning the book. This will give you a better understanding of the terminology that he uses throughout the book.

After he introduces his accident, he goes into flashback mode and talks about his childhood. He does an OK job of building his character. You understand the kind of person he is, and the thoughts that go through his head during his life-threatening situation start to make sense.

2009 Muddy Buddy Richmond – Race Report

This is just an awesome race at Pocahontas State Park. The obstacles are top-notch. The mud pit is long, and the spectators get on you if you’re not face down in it. The team names are hilarious… and the costumes even better. I even witnessed a proposal this year.

For some, one Muddy Buddy is enough. But not me. I came back for round 2, this time with a different partner. Nate Raecke provided the bike, Pocahontas provided the park and we took care of the rest.

The weather

A little colder this year (mid 60s), and overcast, but overall, not bad. It rained quite a bit yesterday, which made for some slick spots on the trail. But it is the muddy buddy, so there’s no reason to wait until the end before we get dirty.

Obstacles

This year featured a:

  • mini rock wall with a cargo net on the opposite side
  • balance beam (which I always struggle with)
  • 20 ft. military crawl under a cargo net (I was lightning fast)
  • cargo net climb up an inflatable slide; slide down (which I also dominated)
  • and the always popular stream crossing

Mud pit

Last year’s mud was like sludge. Definitely man-made. The kind you just get stuck in.

This year, I think the overnight rain changed things a bit. The mud pit was watered down. Liquid mud. The kind that splashes. And there were rocks on the bottom. Sharp ones.

The proposal

For the second time in 2 weeks, I witnessed a marriage proposal at a race. Last week I saw a guy get on one knee before his race during the National Duathlon Festival downtown. Today, this guy proposed to his girlfriend right after they got out of the mudpit together. Maybe this is a sign for how I’m supposed to propose… who knows, but maybe I should find a girlfriend first. Let’s start there.

It was Nate’s first time, and he enjoyed himself, despite the 2 hours of sleep he got the night before. And I enjoyed round 2 more than I thought I would. And in less than 2 weeks I’m doing another mud run, 5k, on Brown’s Island. Hey, I just like to get dirty.

The result

57:38, a few minutes faster than last year.