Welcome to the New England Spahten FAQ!
The goal of this FAQ is to be a guide for new folks, and explain who we are and what we do – and what you can get from being a team member.
Who are the NE Spahtens?
We are an organized group of Obstacle Course Race (OCR) enthusiasts and participants. We have no affiliation with a specific race brand, but as our name suggests, we do kind of like the Spartan Race series, due to their competitive nature and sheer awesomeness. We also run Tough Mudders, Warrior Dashs, Ruckus, Rugged’s – and any quality race in New England.
As a group, we span the full range of athletic abilities – from elite athletes who are competing for prize money and points, to everyday folks who enjoy rolling around in the mud and working out the frustrations of their day job. There are no minimum requirements or expectations.
Our members are from all over New England – MA, NH, CT, RI, VT and ME – and members race all over the country. Prior to the formation of the NE Spahtens, we had state specific groups (the MA Spahtens and RI Spartans being the biggest) – we merged into the NE Spahtens after the 2012 Spartan Sprint in Amesbury MA.
What do you do?
Folks who run OCRs tend to be an enthusiastic bunch – and it’s not uncommon to find out that you’ve worked through your friends, family, gym buddies, co-workers and now you have no one left to run races with. The NE Spahtens fills this void. Through the friendly, social, just as enthusiastic as you contacts you’ll make, there is normally someone from the NE Spahtens at any race you are planning on running – we encourage you to meet them, say hi, maybe race a little bit with them and share stories of other races – compare war wounds – that kind of thing.
How do I officially get on the team for my next race?
Every race series is a little different – not every OCR series supports, encourages or even has teams. But, wherever possible, search for the team name “NE Spahtens” and join it. Check the events page on our website to see if there is an event already created, and network – find the team heat and pick that during your sign up process. If you’re stuck, just ask on the Facebook group – you are almost certain to find out that a group of folks is already running the race.
I’m slow, unfit, fat, not an athlete, never run one of these before, scared out of my mind, can’t climb ropes, can’t run a mile – I’m a total n00b. What can I get out of it?
OCR racing is a new sport and you can only improve. While we have elite runners as part of our group, we have every day, common folks with desk jobs. We have folks who are at the very beginning of their journey to a fitter, healthier life – and folks a little further down that journey. We have folks with injuries, folks who are older and folks who are simply slower. No matter what your experience, where you are on your journey – there will be someone in the group you can relate to. Come to a race with us, and there will be someone running at your pace. Make some friends, get some encouragement and who knows – you may even find yourself doing things you never thought you were capable of.
Is there a team uniform?
NE Spahten member Mike McEnzie designed an awesome logo for the team, and members Crystal and Jess went ahead and organized group orders for compression sleeves and some amazing team shirts supplied through Akuma. Prior to that, Sandy organized shirts for the MA Spahtens specifically. Point being, yes – there are team shirts and you can have one – CLICK HERE. We wear these shirts to any race we run – Spartan Race or otherwise – and they are not required gear – you can still hang out with us, even if you aren’t in a cool team shirt and sleeves 🙂
How can I run with you? Where are you running next?
Check the Events tab out – listed there is a (usually incomplete) list of the up and coming races that NE Spahtens will be attending – you can socialize and chat with your fellow racers there. If there isn’t an event for a race you’re doing, create and entry! Put in all the relevant information (date, location, wave time etc). Please keep this limited to OCRs and other OCR style events, or we’ll end up with every local 5k, 1/2 and full marathon – and we are an OCR group at heart!
Hang out in the group. Check out the events. Post an introduction. Ask questions – GET MUDDY!