Posted in DIY Obstacles, Gear reviews, Training

DIY Obstacles aka creating a home made OCR rig – Updated

Quite a while ago I added a post about how I created a home made OCR rig, DIY Obstacles aka creating a home made OCR rig. In the year since I added that post, I have updated the home made rig to be something far easier to use and much more convenient.

Instead of having to lug my things over to our local fitness center, now I can just attach them to the bottom of my kitchen deck. To do this I used 3 1/2 eye-bolts and pre-drilled holes into the bottom of the deck rafters and then I screwed in the eye-bolts. All of the attachments now can be added or removed with quick release clips. This is much move convenient than before.

I also make is much easier to do simple grip work since I can now do this at my house.

This made a huge difference this year in my ability to get across grip strength obstacles like the Ape-hanger at Palmerton.

Posted in DIY Obstacles, Gear reviews, Training

DIY Obstacles aka creating a home made OCR rig

How I have my “Rig” attached has changed. The new configuration can be seen by clicking the picture. Everything else has stayed the same. After 1 year of use all of the attachments are still performing as good as new.


Since I’m tired of falling off rigs while Luke sails across, I figured that I needed to do something to raise my odds a little bit.  Since I don’t have a big enough bank account to buy my own rig, I decided I might as well create my own.

I thought the best way to do this is to enlist Luke to help design and build the obstacles. So that is what I did.  His thought was that we needed a combination of ball holds, pipe holds, rings and ropes and about 10-12 of them in total. Those seem to be some of the more common grips on the rigs, so I figured that this would be a pretty good start. So after a quick trip to to price out some of the items we need, I decided there has to be a better way.
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Posted in Gear reviews, Training

Triwonder Professional Outdoors Hydration Pack

I bought this pack for my son to use during our training for the Pennsylvania Spartan Super and the Vermont Spartan Beast, I currently have a Nathan Zelos pack and will be using that as a point of comparison.

Vest fron

The first thing I noticed was that the pack sold here is really an “AONIJIE” which sold as a “Triwonder” through the AMAZON vendor. It has not even been relabeled to match the “Triwonder name”from the Amazon storefront. That isn’t a bad thing, but is seemed strange when I opened the box. The second is that it is marketed as a hydration vest, but they don’t sell a bladder for it (yet) and you need to depend on water bottles. I knew that when I purchased it,  But It can easily be converted into a vest to carry a bladder by dropping in a 1.5 or 2-liter Camelbak bladder. Doing this raises the price to about $60, which is still about half the price of my Nathan vest.

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Posted in Gear reviews, Training

Nathan Zelos


The Nathan Zelos was the first running vest that I purchased, prior to this season I had no reason for own this type of pack.  For short runs I use a Nathan Trail Mix 4 hydration belt,  but for longer runs including my 8.5 mile run from work to home, I needed something with a little bit of cargo carrying ability.  I also intended to use the vest for my longer OCRs as well.

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Posted in Gear reviews, Training

A view from the “mountaintop”

It is a bit hard to call a 1300′ foot hill in Montgomery County Maryland a mountain.  But, this is I have to work with, so a mountain it will be. On Sunday, Luke and I decided we would go for a  for a trail “run” at Sugarloaf Mountain in preparation for our Pennsylvania and Vermont Spartan Races.

I also got to test out a new pair of trail running shoes Salomon Speedcross 3’s. Continue reading “A view from the “mountaintop””