Zombie Run Toronto
DescriptionRunForYourLives came to Toronto (well.... 1.5 hour drive north of Toronto) for a good ol' fashioned Zombie, flag football, mud run on September 22, 2012. Run for Your Lives organizes mud runs around North America for people who enjoy something a little more exciting....
Basically what you do is run a 5km mud run with obstacles while avoiding volunteer zombies in full make up who are trying to take your "health point" flags from your belt. In the race kit you will be provided a belt with 3 health points, a timer chip with plastic ties, four pins, a race bib number, drink tickets, and a shirt. Once you've completed the race you will receive your medal.
While running, you will encounter electric fences and wires, things to climb, places to get wet, and stuff to crawl under. There will probably be about two water stations, and don't forget, a slew of zombies. There are warnings before all the dangerous obstacles, so don't worry if you want to avoid electricity.
All in all, I thought it was going to be a lot more intense. In reality, it was just a lot of walking and waiting for large groups so you could throw some stranger under the bus when a zombie was on your tail. The obstacles were very easy and there was no one around the enforce penalty if you skipped one.
If you managed to make it to the end, you would walk over a different finish line: the Alive Group. If you had nothing left, zombies ignored you and you would shamefully cross with the Dead group. And good on ya if you made it to the end! Since I was a young male who had three flags up until near the end, I was attacked on the final sprint. I mean full body contact attacked... which they weren't allowed to do. So I made fun of their mothers. It was also cold! So no one was really enjoying the band and food stands. We didn't even end up using our free beer tickets. We showered, stripped and ran to the car to crank on the heating.
Tips and Tricks on a Survival Run!
1) Run in groups. Don't stand out. Wait for groups. Don't run ahead of everyone. These zombies are hungry and enjoy taking down fit humans. Watch out for young punks. They do the opposite of the laws in nature. They hunt down the strong and athletic... not the sick and weak.
2) If you see garbage bags (or other things out of place) look inside them. They can have "health packs" that contain an extra three flags of life. You can share these with other runners (meat shields) or keep it hidden until near the end. If you see signs indicating "health packs" it's probably a trap.
3) I never saw Zombies inside obstacles attempt to take health points. This is probably because there would be a higher rate of injury. Do not fear them. Taunt them.
4) The official rules are, zombies cannot touch you, and you cannot round house kick them (seriously, read the rules). Unfortunately this isn't what really happens. Runners body check the zombies and zombies go after some people a little too aggressively. Vaughn had his ass grabbed and I was pushed a lot.
5) Dress for the weather. We were way too cold and it started to rain. Don't worry about damage. While clothes will probably get dirty, there weren't many parts of the run that could lead to tears, unlike the Spartan Race Series.
6) There were two water stations but you shouldn't really need it unless you're pushing really hard.
7) Watch the video to see what you're up against. The zombies are as different as people are. Some see the run as a fun event, while others are just jerks. A lot of the zombies will be spread out in open spaces so it becomes a bit of a free for all tag game. Don't forget to look behind you since they can chase you. and.... they can take more than one flag.
9) To fully use your strategies, you should have a belt strategy. A lot of people keep their flags behind them so it looks like they're dead already, and when they pass the more athletic zombies they twirl it around so they can protect them. Then they run like crazy. Others keep the flags on their belly at all times so they can see them. The problem with this strategy is that the zombies can see them too.
10) Zombies can hide in the bushes. They're tricky. Some that are standing still go for flags from time to time. They're really tricky! Listen for screams to know when zombies are close. Seriously.
11) I saw very few people surviving. Many who were crossing the finish line alive cheated a bit. Popular methods include hiding flags, using pins to pin the flags, holding flags in your hands, saving health packs, sharing flags, and wrapping flags around the belt a few times. Remember that if they catch you cheating, they will run at you will all the anger of a hungry Dawn of the Dead zombie.
Good Luck! It was fun! I don't really want to do another one, but I already signed up for the race in South California so I'll just try to set a new goal. Finish in under 30 minutes with life intact. And, my stabilizer should be here in the mail by then, so hopefully it wont be as shaky.