It’s been said teamwork makes the dream work.
Nothing brought this phrase to life for us quite like the Rugged Maniac 5K Obstacle Race and Mud Run we completed on Saturday, July 22. Long Island Cares, the Harry Chapin Food Bank participated in this insanely dirty obstacle course and found out exactly how much team work is required to make this thing work. Our team consisted of 4 employees, and 6 community members, including Legislator Monica Martinez of Brentwood.
The day was challenging, but the accomplishment that comes with completing the course is a feeling that runs deep. Take, for example, the mud crawl, a 3-ft pool of heavy mud that dragged some of us down in the dirt and left us all feeling stuck. Climbing through the pit was like hauling yourself to pay day with an empty fridge, but having a helping hand makes it easier to get there.
Legislator Martinez made it through most of the mud before she lost a shoe to the fight. Despite the casualty, she just kept pushing through and completed the race, one shoe shorter but all smiles regardless.
Our Agency Relations Compliance Coordinator Michele Jackson, came along to cheer us on and said the mud pit was difficult to simply watch.
“Fighting the weight and watching everybody struggle to get out was surprisingly hard. You have to rely on your fellow man, whether it is the team you joined with or the person next to you, till you get to the other side,” said Jackson.
The run was held at the Long Island Sports Park in Calverton, a former golf course that now hosts events, weddings, and outdoor festivals. On the day of the Rugged Maniac, it hosted 3.1 miles of rugged terrain for more than 3,894 attendees to enjoy.
Besides the down and dirty run, the day also included a mechanical bull, contests of strength, musical acts, and beer holding contests. We also met some really cool vendors and donors, including Protes Protein Chips, a surprisingly delicious post-workout chip. They were parked next our donation booth the whole day and donated a few boxes of chips to our drive!
Long Island Cares would like to extend a big thank you to all who came out, participated, cheered us on, and found the rugged maniac inside ourselves. (We would also like to thank that guy in a clown costume for the motivation to run faster). Overall, it was a day of laughs, athleticism, and bonding for our employees and volunteers.
This article was written by social media specialist Michelle LaFiura and social media intern Patrick Northcutt. All photos were taken by Michele Jackson, the agency relations compliance coordinator at Long Island Cares.