Spartan Race guide by Jonathan Redmond
With the recent announcement regarding two new Canadian Hurricane Heats, many are left wondering where exactly they fit in the Reebok Spartan Race lineup. Although the Reebok Spartan Race series is in constant mutation, I have gathered the most up to date information in this brief overview. I wish you good reading and I hope this helps you choose your next Spartan challenge wisely!
Reebok Spartan Race events
Reebok Spartan Junior
Junior races are offered in four formats and age groups (2017):
4 yrs. old: 0,8 km
4 à 8 yrs. old: 0,8 km
9 à 13 yrs. old: 1,5 km +
11 à 13 yrs. old competitive: 3,2 km
“Spartan Race isn’t just for adults. Our Spartan Juniors Race offers three distances for the little Spartans in your life. Based on age, our Junior races have obstacles in them just like the grown up versions. Find a race and sign up know for your future Spartans. They will run, jump, and play just like they’re supposed to.”*
Reebok Spartan Sprint
Sprint Races are the entry level in this series: 6 km+ , 20 to 23 obstacles . They are available in three formats:
- Classic: in the great outdoors, mud, water, insects and vegetation are all part of the game! Often run on ski slopes in the summer, you have to expect up and downhill running.
- Stadium Series: shorter distances, obstacle concentration, flat surfaces and absolutely no mud!
- Honor Series: run exclusively on military bases alongside military personnel.
“This is our shortest distance. It is perfect for athletes of all levels; from Spartan first timers to seasoned racers. The 6 km + Sprint may be our shortest distance but it packs more than 20 Signature Spartan Obstacles.”
Reebok Spartan Super
Super races are the next level up: 13 km + , 24 to 29 obstacles . Certains Supers are also available in Honor Series format.
“This is our middle distance course. With a longer distance than the Sprint and more obstacles, the Super will test your endurance, perseverance and grit. The 13 km Super packs more than 25 Signature Spartan Obstacles through tougher and more rugged terrain.”*
Reebok Spartan Beast
Beast races are not for beginners: 21 km+ , 30 to 35 obstacles .
“This is our most difficult of the three. The Beast will test not only your endurance, perseverance and grit, but also your mind. The 20 km Beast packs more than 30 Signature Spartan Obstacles.”*
Spartan Race Trifecta
If you complete at least one of each race distances (Sprint, Super and Beast) in one year, you will have earned your Spartan Race Trifecta. With each medal you received, you also receive one third of a larger medal. Assemble all three and you have your Trifecta medal! It is also possible to obtain special medals for completing multiple Trifectas in a year (x2, x3, x4, etc.) Some have reached 15 trifectas in one year!
Reebok Spartan Race Endurance Events
Reebok Spartan Ultra-Beast
An event like no other, the Ultra Beast requires that you run two laps of a Beast in about 12 hours or less: 42 km+ , 50+ obstacles .
“The Ultra Beast is considered the pinnacle of Spartan Racing. Covering 42 km+ in the hills, with a few twists thrown in to keep it interesting, the Ultra Beast is not for the faint of heart. The Ultra Beast is the only Spartan Race with strict time hacks that must be met. Please note not everyone who signs up for the Ultra will actually finish.”
Reebok Spartan HH (Hurricane Heat)
Here we enter the endurance events proper: every Hurricane Heat is unique in distance and lasts 3 to 4 hours .
“Beyond the mileage of the Spartan Race Trifecta stands the Hurricane Heat, or HH. As a team-based event designed to push racers to greater personal distances, you quickly learn the value and true meaning of having mutual objectives through teamwork. You also see the connection between teamwork and success and one drives the other on both a personal level and as a member of something greater than yourself.
The foundation of the HH is based on a code called “The Warrior’s Ethos,” which is 23 words comprising four main principles with centuries of meaning behind them. This ethos serves to provide a spark to warm you on the coldest of mornings and guide you on darkest of nights as it will guide you and as a critical step towards the pinnacle of Spartan — the Agoge. The Hurricane Heat is where you learn non-traditional problem solving, find endurance under duress, and experience the power of synergy.
There are no timing chips and no bibs. There is no individual competition. Once immersed in the HH culture, you quickly find your “why” and a renewed sense of purpose for taking on this challenge. With a gear list in your email inbox, the onus is on you to come prepared for four hours of intense demanding work with plenty of mental and physical challenges. Each HH is a unique experience directly related to the individuality of the venue, as well as the cadre in charge. You will be challenged. As a team, you will succeed.” *
Reebok Spartan HH12HR (Hurricane Heat 12 hour)
The next level in Reebok Spartan Race endurance events will make you push your limits!
“The 12 Hour Hurricane Heat, or HH12HR, is Spartan’s next level standalone event specifically designed to test every facet of your mental, intellectual and physical abilities through the use of mental challenges, nonlinear problem solving, morality, as well as teamwork and individual performance under physical duress.
Where the HH emphasizes the Warrior’s Ethos and teamwork to finish and find success, the HH12HR seamlessly interweaves elements of individual competition against the clock and other participants within the challenges that require teamwork and synergy.
Developed to forge the next level of Spartan, and as the precursor to the Spartan Agoge, the HH12HR is difficult, challenging and rewarding. Participants are required to be self-supported for the duration of the event. No outside assistance, no support team, no crew. To accomplish this, it is recommend that each participant carry a large ruck/backpack, a 2-3L Hydration Unit, and whatever food you think you need to survive 12 hours of pushing yourself beyond your limits. In addition, participants will receive a gear list via email that will include mandatory gear and equipment. Due to the unique nature of every HH12HR event, the gear list will always contain a few items that are event specific. Participants are strongly encouraged to arrive equipped and prepared.
In this phase of your 1,000 mile journey are the lessons of actions/consequences, personal accountability, perseverance, and dedication. You’ve mastered initiative. Now it’s time to master follow through and commitment.”
Reebok Spartan HH24HR (Hurricane Heat 24 hour)
The 24 hour Hurricane Heat is an extended version of the HH12HR that respects the same mindset and ideals explained above.
Reebok Spartan Race Training Events
Reebok Spartan Agoge 60
The ultimate challenge (for now)!
“ 48-hour (winter) or 60-hour (summer) event that builds physical, tactical, mental, and team-based strength through training, testing, and evaluation
To complete the Spartan Agoge, a person must overcome mental and physical obstacles that aim to develop the body, mind and spirit. Most people will need to undertake months of training and self-discovery to earn this coveted achievement.
The Spartan Agoge brings together every physical and mental strength as well as everything a person has learned in life. Finishers become innovative thinkers, prudent risk-takers, and expert decision-makers. They will embody the Spartan Code, a code of honor and respect that breeds trust and inspires action. Most importantly, they become masters of themselves.
It is advised that entrants have completed various endurance events and intellectual challenges. This could mean developing perseverance, camaraderie, and leadership through military training, or it could mean completing various Spartan Race and Spartan Hurricane Heat distances.”
Here is where we leave races behind completely; the Spartan SGX program is a training course to become an obstacle course coach. The training program also offers two new courses: Spartan Obstacle Specialist and Spartan Edge.
“SGX is Spartan’s official training program and the leader in obstacle race fitness. SGX is designed for every fitness level and any age, a scientifically-supported solution to get anyone physically and mentally prepared for a Spartan Race, or to live more vitally. SGX is grounded in functional bodyweight exercise to improve agility, athleticism and power; the workouts are progressive, varying in exercise volume, intensity and specificity over time. SGX is also about empowerment. Coaches are trained to help people improve their nutritional and lifestyle habits and self-efficacy, all critical to success in the race and in daily life.”*
Like the Spartan SGX program, Spartan X offers to teach you, based on the Spartan principles, to tackle the obstacles you meet in life rather than those found on the obstacle course.
“SPARTAN X the Course is an educational program driven by Spartan principles. It is the result of over 1,000 interviews with psychologists, sociologists, monks, priests, educators, athletes, community leaders and business innovators gathering data as to what it takes to achieve success.
What we learned is that there is a secret to success. People who commit – those who follow through with their goals, exhibit grit, and delay gratification – are more likely to be successful in life.
This curriculum and its 10 modules will help you get to the finish line. It’s going to be hard, but those that get through the 30 days (or however long it takes you) will have an owner’s manual for life. It will be your blueprint for when things get tough.”*
Ultra Events: Peak Series
This series offers ultra events for the elite athletes.
“The Peak Races series was created by ultra-athletes who wanted to turn coal into diamonds. To do that they developed 4 insane ultra-endurance events here in central Vermont. They believe that by completing one race (and for the insane every/all) in one year, the athletes will end the year in amazing shape… and live longer too!”
Peak Series: Death Race
“The Death Race is the ultimate challenge, designed to present you with the unexpected and the completely insane! Nothing else on earth will challenge you like The Death Race, both mentally and physically.
Every Death Race is it’s own uniquely brutal challenge, no two races are alike. The race, created by Ultra athletes Joe Desena and Andy Weinberg, was developed as a way for athletes to test themselves both mentally and physically. The Death Races take place in the unexpectedly challenging terrain of the Green Mountains in and around Pittsfield, Vermont and have lasted over 70 hours. We provide no support. We don’t tell you when it starts. We don’t tell you when it ends. We don’t tell you what it will entail. We want you to fail and encourage you to quit at any time.”†
Peak Series: Bike Races
Different races formats can include 6 hour loop challenges or multiple destination adventure challenges.
Peak Series: Peak Ultra
On either trail or road, distances vary between 25 km and 800 km.
Peak Series: Peak Snowshoe Race
Snowshoe races offer a variety of distances: 10 km, ½ marathon, marathon et 160 km.
*Information found on these web sites www.spartanrace.ca and www.spartan.com
†Information found on this site peak.com