After each mud run or obstacle race I compete in, you'll get my review and grades for each event to help you decide which ones you might want to sign up for. The following categories will be discussed:

1. COURSE- the design, venue, and setup of the race itself- how creative/ adventurous/ difficult the obstacles were, and obviously... how was the MUD?!?

2. FESTIVAL- all the fun beyond the actual race- the social atmosphere which usually includes food, beer garden, dj/ music/ concert, contests, vendors, and more during the after-party

3. SWAG- the included goodie bag and prizes up for grabs- all the "free" stuff that comes with price of entry and the quality of awards, shirts, and other giveaways

Feel free to use the search box to read up on any past topics you might be looking for.


My last visit to Brooklyn was the miserable Rugged Maniac in June, where I debated whether or not to return to Floyd Bennett Field for another obstacle race, despite it being the closest venue of the year to my home in Long Island.  The Civilian Military Combine has been one of my favorite (and luckily also successful) events over the last two years doing them, as this was my fourth CMC competing both as an individual and on a team.  Having a longtime friendship with their staff and going to defend the previous titles, we had to make it back for another trip to the Flatbush Avenue exit on the Belt Parkway.

1. COURSE:  Being an Urban Assault event in the CMC series, anyone could plainly guess this would be nothing like May's Camelback PA mountain race, as there aren't too many significant ski resorts in downtown Brooklyn, haha.  A flat and partially paved course, originally advertised as 4.5 miles in length, had to be at least a mile less as racers were clocking times around 30 minutes or even slightly under (and that's with first enduring CMC's famed 7 minute "pit" workout portion to burn up your legs and lungs before the run).  But focusing on the obstacle race, this event had a much better use of the land and fortunately did try to not to over-use the long asphault roads to merely stretch miles into the race.  And these old knees certainly appreciated it!  And while the race was quick and not a grueling uphill mountain course, it was obstacle dense with likely in the neighborhood of 30 separate pieces across the roughly 5k distance.  Both the barricaded pit area and at least a dozen of the more exciting obstacles near the final 5 minutes of the course were open to spectator viewing, the best of which was a two story container with multiple sections of climbing and ranger rope traverse high above.  GRADE = A

2.  FESTIVAL:  Surrounding the fenced-in "pit" filled with barbells, kettlebells, and plyo boxes- the festival had an impressive vendor village with more participants and sponsors than we have seen before at a CMC.  Multiple branches of the military were represented and had fitness contests to win their souvenirs, and the many food/beverage companies had samples or more to give away.  Food and beer (in addition to the one free Bud Light) were for sale as well, though options were limited to surprisingly less than "healthful" options at this CrossFit and fitness-friendly event.  The same DJ that rocked the sounds for the workout sessions was broadcast to the whole area near race start/finish and all afterparty areas.  GRADE = A

3.  SWAG: The trademark dogtags are still among my favorite finisher medals, as one side adds the specific date and location for the race, which I wish more events would do.  Top 3 awards (not shown, as an awards ceremony wasn't held that day) are more high end engraved chrome dogtags, given in many individual categories and to overall teams.  Finisher tshirts are soft cotton Next Level apparel, designed by Muzzlejab and also featuring the season schedule on reverse.  Until this Brooklyn event with these light gray shirts, all previous versions have been black, so it was nice to have a different one this time.  GRADE = A