This is a guest post from Spahten Nele Schulze
Boston Flash WOD 10/27/2012
Earlier in the summer someone came up with the brilliant idea of a Spartan Flash WOD to promote Spartan Races. Now for those who aren’t sure what a Flash WOD is, it’s based on a flash mob, which is defined as a group of people who suddenly assemble in a place, perform an unusual and seemingly pointless act for a brief time, then disperse. In this case the “unusual and seemingly pointless act” would be a workout to give the audience a general idea of what Spartan Races are about.
Now the idea had been brewing for some time, and lucky for us, Boston was chosen as the tester for a Flash WOD to promote the Spartan Race at Fenway on November 17th. Rumors began on social networking sites of possible dates and locations and finally it was confirmed! October 27th would be the day a group of enthusiastic Spartans and their families would meet and perform the Flash WOD. I packed my 8lb sandbag in a backpack and skipped into Boston to meet Mercedes, who did a fantastic job organizing the event, where we waited for other Spartans to appear. Surely, one-by-one, Spartan t-shirts started appearing out of the crowd and assembling at the meeting point. Out of the corner of my eye I noticed a huge spear making its way through the crowd, carried by none other than Keith Glass. About 5 minutes later Mario Da Silva shows up in red speedos and covered in red body paint dressed as the devil. This was going to be fantastic for the Flash WOD because nothing attracts attention like a man with a spear next to a man painted in red as a devil. We said our hellos, and gave our introductions and quickly started to go over the plan.
Off we went to the parking garage above the Hard Rock Café to grab supplies and rehearse. We all wore matching t-shirts, we had the devil, a Spartan Queen, and a Spartan Warrior (complete with spear, sword and helmet) accompanying us. We decided the WOD would be burpees (because nothing screams Spartan Race like burpees), squats, and bear crawls. The difficult thing was figuring out how to make the obstacle aspect of the races come across during the workout, but it just wasn’t feasible to carry obstacles into downtown Boston. Drop Kick Murphys – Shipping Up To Boston was the song chosen to work out to. After a couple of rehearsals in the parking garage we decided it was time. We left in groups and mingled in with the crowd at Faneuil Hall. I waited nervously for Keith the Spartan Warrior to stand up on a post and begin making his speech. Then I heard it, “300 of you are gathered here today…” at the top of his voice, you couldn’t miss it. I could see Spartan t-shirts in the crowd gathering closer to Keith and the Spartan Queen. “I am Spartan!!!” we shouted, getting geared up, and really getting into it. And at the final “ARROOOO” instead of taking off running (which is what I’m used to when hearing that speech) I dropped to the ground and began bear crawling to the front of the work out, passing a row doing squats, and joining the front row doing burpees. Then we all switched. At the end we stood in a single row, an army of not quite 300, doing burpees. “I am Spartan!!! AROO AROO AROO!!!” we shouted, and it was over. Flyers and wristbands were passed out, chatting to folks, explaining the concept of an obstacle course race. Then Gangnam Style started blasting from the speakers and the Spartan Queen and Mario the devil start busting out the dance! We watch for a bit, but Mercedes and myself couldn’t help but join in, followed by a bunch of teenage boys. Great way to finish the Flash WOD!
We headed back to the parking garage to pick up belongings from the car and that was it, as long as the planning had taken, the actual event lasted a few minutes. But what a fantastic few minutes. I left the group of old and new friends full of pride of being a Spartan and being able to give something back to the races that have changed my life.