Facing Arizona: Training and competing for Spartan races while living in Arizona
Editor’s note: Facing Arizona is a series that will appear on KTAR.com and social media — follow KTAR News on Instagram and Facebook for updates — highlighting unique and everyday people across our state and give you a glimpse into their lives.
I have been competing in Spartan races since 2014. To me, being a Spartan racer, is to challenge myself, not only against others but to push myself past my limits, to be better than I am.
I moved from Michigan 11 years ago. The economy was better, job prospects were better. I can honestly say, that had I stayed in Michigan, I probably wouldn’t be competing in the Spartan races. Though I did travel back home to race in 2017, the ability to train year-round would be hampered. It would be completely different. You would have to run on treadmills during the winter months, which would be dreadful in my opinion. There wouldn’t be as many days to train outdoors and really put yourself through the paces, which is crucial come race day. I feel there is a different mentality about being physical, and being active, between people here in Arizona and people back in Michigan.
That is not to say that there aren’t people in Michigan that train hard and compete, but it is more difficult to get motivated in the winter months. The ability to train year-round outdoors is one of the best things about this state. – Jake Podolsky