Do you remember my running post, the one where I listed several reasons I go running? I have another thing to add to that list: quirky races like Gung-Ho. I’m really glad I took part but I wouldn’t do the same run again. It’s still worth adding to my list, as I know there are other similar runs out there that I’d like to take part in.
Gung-Ho came to Leeds, Temple Newsam to be exact, a couple of weeks ago which I and three of my colleagues signed up to as soon as we heard about it. We got super excited the week before and when driving there – despite it being far too early in the morning – the excitement was hitting the roof. The excitement lasted till we set off and for most part of the run but afterwards, I was over it. Here’s what I liked about the run and also why I wouldn’t take part a second time!
Why I ran Gung-Ho
Inflatable obstacles! Do I need to say more? Obstacles can sometimes be hard but when they’re inflatable, it’s all about fun. Gung-Ho has 5-10 different inflatable obstacles along their 5k course, ending on a high with the tallest slide in Europe. When I first saw pictures of the slide, I thought it looked very steep and maybe something I wouldn’t be able to handle. When I saw it in real life, it didn’t look that bad and it was definitely the most fun obstacle during the race. I did scream a bit setting off at the top, but only out of excitement.
The other obstacles varied in terms of fun and difficulty. Some where just pointless to be honest. The one we struggled the most on and needed help with was the climbing wall. I had no idea where to start and being short didn’t really help either. I do like a challenge though and we did it in the end. It was nice to see that so many people helped each other and even strangers. It’s a good team building and team work exercise.
Anyone Can Take Part
After the climbing wall, I felt like we’d accomplished something, which was fun. I do understand that all obstacles can’t be like that one as anyone can sign up and I like that. We saw dads with their children, whole families and people walking the course so any level of fitness is welcome.
Why I won’t Run Gung-Ho Again
Wow, I couldn’t believe it but there were some areas of the course that was so disorganised. All the had was cones marking where you were supposed to run. I saw so many people skipping parts and taking short cuts. I refused! If we hadn’t seen where people had taken turns before us, we could easily ave gone on the wrong track. There was one long stretch where people arriving to the field and warming up area was the same as we were running on and people didn’t realise and therefore didn’t move. It would have been helpful with signs indicating that runners will use the same path.
When we signed up, we had to choose the time wave we’d like to be sent out in. I’m glad that we picked the earliest one available but still we ended up queuing at some of the obstacles. The first wave easily did times around half an hour. I said from the start I was only there to have fun (which I did) but it took us 1 and a half hour to finish. Without the queues I think we could have done it in half that time. For me, it felt like I did 5 x 1K runs rather than a full 5K. If you do decide to run Gung-Ho next year, make sure to sign up to be in the first wave. Later on you’re looking at hours to complete.
With admin fee I think we paid around £35. You can get it cheaper if you’re one of the first to sign up but also pay a lot more if you wait the one of the last. It’s not worth it! You get the experience, a cool t-shirt and headband when finishing but you get these in most races so it’s nothing extra special. I can’t believe they charged us for handing in our bags whilst running the race.
Have you run any quirky runs to recommend? Which runs would you never do again?